jill lim cost of pregnancy

In this series Jill Spills, Kiss92’s Jill Lim bares her soul about the trials and tribulations of being a millennial mother.

Before manifesting your intents was trendy, as a child I’d concentrate and wish very hard for something I really wanted, and a large percentage of the time it would come true! I can’t explain how or why, but years later I realised I had been manifesting my dreams.

While trying to conceive my second child, the costs were piling up and in less of a meditative manifestation state, I complained: “The government seriously needs to give us more help financially!” Two weeks later, as if the universe heard me, the new budget was announced!

Things rarely go according to plan

Quite frankly, I blame the lack of sex education in Singapore. It is drilled into our young minds that, in our hormonal adolescent state, so much as a lingering glance from the opposite sex could potentially result in pregnancy! 

While there are fairly accurate free apps that help track your cycle, that alone didn’t give me a peace of mind when I was trying for a child. That’s where ovulation strips came in. Clearblue sells ovulation test kits at $57.50 for a pack of 10.

If you have irregular periods like me (mine lasts anywhere from five to 11 days), tracking ovulation becomes more tricky. Tracking my ovulation for three months already set me back by $172.50 ($57.50 x 3).

I’m ovulating today, so I’ll get pregnant today. Easy!

Not quite. Everybody would love to have spontaneous, wild passionate sex that results in a beautiful baby as the fruit of your nasty labour. If that’s your birth story, well done to you! Once again, nothing came easy for me both tries.

Once I confidently knew when I was ovulating with the help of the app and ovulation strips, I’d tell my husband to try to get off work as early as he could, come energised and raring to go as I would be ready for insemination!

With my irregular periods and desperation to have a child, I would take a pregnancy test the second my period was late. Trusty brand ClearBlue was my choice, at $18.80. Once, my period was five days late. I took three pregnancy tests during that time, all showing negative. $18.80 x 3 = $56.40 down the drain.

What was the matter with me? Google gave me the answer to something that was always stated clearly but just didn’t click in my mind. “A woman ovulates for up to three days.” Those words “up to” – what really was my ovulation window? Back to the store to pick up another pack of ovulation strips. $57.50.

Many ovulation strips later, I realised my ovulation window was barely a day long! I’d be ovulating that morning, and then be done by lunch time. My best bet was to have sex before my ovulation started, on the day of ovulation and possibly the day after. We did this a couple of times and finally, eight months in, I fell pregnant!

That was how it went the first time…

Second time around, I was prepared!

Lies! It was about six months, two boxes of ovulation strips and four pregnancy tests before I got pregnant the second time. Three weeks in, I lost the baby. Miscarriages are fairly common, with one in four women experiencing them. Some women experience multiple miscarriages before successfully conceiving.

That whole ordeal set me back about $300. I was lucky as I expelled things naturally and didn’t need a D&C (dilation and curettage). That brought the total up to $771.40, trying for my second child.

After the miscarriage, I wanted to prep my body better for conception and pregnancy, so I ordered confinement food for a week. Seven days of lunch and dinner from Tian Wei Signature came up to $498. The portions were really large – they lasted more than seven days. Call it placebo, but I genuinely felt stronger, healthier and warmer. Very soon after, I conceived my second!

Total cost so far: $771.40 + $498 = $1269.40

Fast forward to the present, how much have I spent?

At the time of writing, I’m five months pregnant. A month ago, I started bleeding! It was another threatened miscarriage, which meant an emergency trip to the hospital. My doctor was away, so I had to look up a new gynae. That fiasco set me back $660. Since I wasn’t admitted to the hospital, I couldn’t claim that through insurance.

Just a couple weeks ago, I was admitted into the hospital due to severe migraines that triggered vomiting so badly I had to be placed on an IV to rehydrate. That cost $5570, covered by insurance thankfully.

I’ve got another four months to go before the baby is earth side. Regular medical checkups aside, the running cost to date is $1269.40 + $660 + $5570 = $7499.40

This better be one cute baby.