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We Paid Cash! :: C-Section and Hospital Stay

We paid cash!

Testimonial by Mary from Practical Strawberry

The Plan

When we found out we were expecting in October of 2005, we immediately started saving for the birth. My husband’s income covered most of our expenses, so most of my earnings from my work as a massage therapist went to the Baby Fund. Because we planned to use a midwife, we knew how much the birth would be and it gave me a very concrete, motivating goal.

I feel energized by literally seeing my money accumulate, so I kept a jar on my dresser labeled “Baby Bean” were I would put my spare change and tips from clients. As my belly grew, so did my savings.

By May, I had reached the Birth Fund goal and started to get excited that the rest of the money I earned between then and the baby’s birth in July could be used for some fun new furnishings for our house. Some afternoons after working, I would lay on our bed and mark pages of the IKEA catalog, getting excited about the idea of getting to spend some of our money on something fun, instead of bills, rent, groceries and cars.

Having been a “saver” all my life — although my husband was very sweetly encouraging (he’s the spender) — I eventually decided there was nothing that we really needed and I enjoyed the peace of mind knowing we had the extra money in savings instead of new stuff. And it was a good thing I did!

We paid cash for our boys' birthsThe Unexpected

Our son ended up being breech and instead of the home birth we had planned, I had to have a very expensive C-section delivery and a bit of a hospital stay. Our insurance deductible and other expenses were almost five times as much as we had saved in our original Baby Fund!

Fortunately, the extra money that I had been able to save, combined with what we had been saving in our general savings account was enough to cover the bills. I was even able to negotiate a lower amount for the hospital bill because we paid it in full up front instead of dragging it out for years. It was such a blessing to not have a “baby payment” as part of our early life together as a family of three.

The Second Time Around

When our second son joined our family, we paid cash for his delivery as well, but the process of saving wasn’t as eventful. We just pulled the money out of our general savings account, which we try to add to each month, although the amount was much less the second time around because we were able to use our midwife.

What We’ve Gained

In telling our story, I often say “I” or “we” when referring to our savings, but am more than aware that our ability to save and the resources that we saved all come from God. I truly credit the Holy Spirit for calming my IKEA coveting, at least that time ;).

Many times we fail on our budget, but I know that God is conditioning my heart so that I won’t become overly prideful.

Mary blogs about the adventures of life with her crazy guys (husband and sons included) at Practical Strawberry.

Have you saved up and paid cash for something — large or small? Submit your story for possible publication here.

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10 Comments

  • That’s so amazing! Healthcare bills plague so many people nowadays. God was telling you you’d regret that IKEA! LOL

  • Alyssa says:

    Oh do I know about the IKEA coveting….my credit card sure does!

  • Jennifer says:

    So a midwife is less than a hospital birth? Can someone please show me some numbers? I’m very curious about this. I’ve had 3 hospital births ranging in price from $600-$800 out of pocket after our insurance covered the majority of expenses. That number doesn’t include all my prenatal visits and tests.

    • Shelly says:

      @Jennifer, It largely depends on where you live and your insurance coverage. I had a vaginal birth in a hospital with an OB and paid about $1,000 out-of-pocket for everything, even with a $0 deductible – we had to pay 10% co-insurance. If your insurance only charges co-pays for hospital stays, you’ll pay significantly less, whereas if you have a deductible and co-insurance, you’ll pay more.

      The poster was talking about a home birth with a midwife, which, in our area runs around $2,500 (including prenatal care), whereas a hospital birth will cost $6,000-$8,000 (for a “normal” vaginal birth). If your insurance were to cover a midwife and pay at the same percentage as a hospital birth, you’d definitely save money that way!

    • mary says:

      @Jennifer, like shelly said, it all depends on your insurance. our insurance had a high deductible and then a copay, so at 2K for a midwife, which included my prenatal, it was much cheaper than the hospital route. but price was secondary. we prefer the care and experience of our midwife.

    • Cricket says:

      @Jennifer, Definitely depends on you insurance as well as delivery location. Baby #1 we paid about $1500 for delivery (no epidural) and hospital stay for both me and baby. Baby #2 delivered at the same hospital but on different insurance we paid $300 for everything. I was told that the hospital charged 2x what a nearby women’s center charged.

  • I have had two c-sections due to placenta previa and thank goodness we had insurance through my husband. The first baby we had to pay a $200 co-pay and the second baby was a $1000 deductable (my husband switched jobs and insurance). Thankfully I knew that I would need c-sections way beforehand so we saved the money up to pay cash for them- I can’t imagine having to pay for the full amount out of pocket though! Great job not falling into the “I need to buy all new stuff for my baby” track! Nothing is better than knowing your precious liitle baby is “paid for”!

  • Mary says:

    Ahhh…..IKEA….. 🙂

  • Bethany says:

    After having three babies in less than three years, I quickly learned that even though all those pretty new baby things may look nice, it’s so much more economical to just go garage sailing for all the baby’s stuff!! They grow out of everything faster than the speed of light, and 90% of the time you can find brand-new or hardly used things at yard sales for pennies on the dollar.

  • Sarah says:

    that’s awesome!

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