How did you prep for TTC?

[name_m]Hi[/name_m] Berries!

My fiancee and I are getting married on Friday, and will be starting TTC at the end of the year/start of next. As it is potentially our last full year with just us, there is a few things we want to do before baby.
I’m curious (and I know it’s different for everyone!) how did you prep for ttc?
What things did you check off your list before baby? Things you wanted to do?
Did you build up your savings?
What health goals did you want to achieve before then?
Did you get it all done, if not, did it even matter?

Looking forward to hearing everyone’s different experiences :slight_smile:

First off, congrats on your wedding. Make sure take a second to just sit there and look around and take it all in. It will go so quickly!

We got married in [name_f]October[/name_f] and are just starting our TTC journey. Last year for the wedding, both DH and I worked our tails off and took all the overtime we could. It was exhausting but it helped build up our money to pay for the wedding and have a hearty savings as well. This year so far, my job has slowed down, but he is still taking the overtime. We have both been at each of these jobs about 3 years so we have benefits a bit of seniority which is nice. My current job has paid maternity leave so that is a plus and one of the reasons I am not actively looking for a different job.

Another thing I really wanted was new cars. Both our cars were old and starting to give us issues, and I was not going to put a child in a unreliable car. We had full intentions on getting cars this year, but DH transmission blew right before the wedding and my car started stalling right after so we jumped on the first opportunity to get new cars in [name_u]November[/name_u].

The only other thing on our ‘to-do’ list is go on our honeymoon. Its already booked for [name_f]April[/name_f] so were kind of at the point if we get pregnant now, we can still do a lot of the stuff we would like the do during the honeymoon. After that, whenever it happens, it will happen. My husband lives by the motto, “you can’t plan life” so he really just goes with the flow.

Best of luck to you!

It took us 3.5 years to get pregnant (and stay pregnant), so we had quite a bit of time to prepare. Obviously, it is different for everyone…but here’s what we did. Oh, and just to note, the timing did give us more room to try and prepare, so some of these were able to become more of a priority than others.

What we did:
*attempted to pay down some debts
*we tried to save at least $1000
*bought our first house
*got started on the ‘health’ side of things, including: bloodwork for both of us (check hormones, etc), cut back on caffeine, got dental work done, etc.
*found new jobs with better benefits
*bought a lot of baby stuff over time (crib, clothing, room items, high chair, etc)

What we would’ve done differently, in hindsight:

*saved more. You will never have enough money set aside. Things happen. We both had expensive situations occur that ate some of our savings and then, when we did get pregnant, there were complications early on that completely ate up the rest of our savings, plus some.

*enjoyed life more. I don’t mean that in a patronizing, “enjoy life now!” way. For us, we were married not even a full year before we started trying. Life became about TTC pretty quick and I let myself get consumed. It became treatment options, support groups, baby this and baby that. My marriage actually suffered for it. I do regret that a lot. I would’ve loved more date nights and less arguments.

Other than that…I’m pretty pleased with how that stage of our life went. The absolute best thing, aside from the job change, was getting baby stuff early!! It allowed me to feel like I was actively doing something plus it allowed us to spend and acquire over time, rather than need to do it in a time crunch (we knew we didn’t want a baby shower). By the time I got pregnant, we had a crib, high chair, lots of onesies (good for any weather…they can either be layered or worn as is), grooming kits, a stash of cloth diapers,

My husband and I got married a month ago and plan to start trying post-[name_u]August[/name_u]. It took a lot of soul searching to make that decision, however, I am 25 and have PCOS so it could take longer than expected. My health has already been bad this past year and I believe this is premenopausal symptoms. So I just can’t risk waiting for the right time.

Things we are doing before baby:

  • Paying off as much debt as we can
  • DIYing our home, it’s an older property and it needs some TLC before we become three.
  • Our honeymoon is in [name_f]May[/name_f].
  • We are already saving for [name_u]Baby[/name_u], I will also be saving at least $20 biweekly as an education/childcare fund.
  • Hubs needs a new, more reliable car, so we’re looking at around $10k.
  • Ensure we are at a good place emotionally/financially.
  • Buy baby things we want if we see them on sale.
  • Husband made full time atwork/

Much like Namergirl, we found ourselves with far more time than we anticipated.
Originally our plan was to buy a house, get an SUV, travel and get moreso financially settled and stable. I also wanted to lose weight and get healthy.

Since it’s been since 2017, our goals have changed in the last few years. We’ve built a house, bought a nice SUV, went to [name_f]Jamaica[/name_f] and money isn’t really a concern in our lives. I’ve been monitored by fertility doctors and have lost almost 90lbs. Things are pretty in order!

Right now as we TTC hoping for a baby in the late 2020 months, our goals are:
Pay off the Cadillac ([name_f]Summer[/name_f] goal)
Get rid of our second vehicle and buy a new, more reliable second vehicle.
Finish paying off his student loans (By [name_f]September[/name_f])
Finish the basement of our house (Fall project)
Finish the backyard (will be done in [name_f]May[/name_f])

On a more personal level, I’d like to lose another 20lbs but realistically it doesn’t matter if I do, I’m more than healthy enough now. I’d like to be able to manage my eating habits and have a healthy pregnancy so currently I’m working on the head issues that caused me to gain the weight in the first place.

None of these goals really matter if they get done before we conceive now, the two biggest ones were to own a house and a safe vehicle and we are all set there, so hopefully the baby is next!

I had my first baby many years ago when showers were not known here in Australia. We had to buy everything (not a sewer or knitter then). We were given gifts after baby was born. Most appreciated were items for when she was older. My [name_f]Nanna[/name_f] gave me a dressing gown size 3-4 which was much appreciated that particular winter as we were then expecting baby no 3.

My advice on preparation resembles that of PP.
Pay debts down as much as possible (preferably totally)
Save as much as possible.
Until you are actually pregnant, I would not buy too much baby essentials, but I would familiarise myself with prices. Look around, know what normal prices are, and what sale prices are.
Look at different pieces of baby equipment and go for quality items. Look at styles etc, so that you know what you want,
Accept baby equipment and clothing if given to you In good condition.
Look to your own health. Get updated on immunisation for Mum especially before falling pregnant.
Good diet and exercise. and most importantly,
[name_m]DON[/name_m]'T GET TOO [name_m]HUNG[/name_m] UP ON GETTING PREGNANT.
Relax, enjoy the practise and most of you will be pregnant quite quickly.
For those ladies who don’t get pregnant easily or quickly, work with your doctor, but you and your husband, need to remember, love yourselves .

We had a couple of big things: first, one of us needed to be able to drive (we live in an area with public transport so it hadn’t been an issue until then). Husband got his licence a few months before we started trying. We also needed to be secure in our jobs, and with me having enough time accrued to be eligible for paid maternity leave. Check. Enough savings to have a nice cushion to extend my maternity leave, if needed. Check. We also desperately wanted to travel – we had a big 3 week trip to Europe covering some of our Bucket List places the year before TTC, plus a few little trips and weekend getaways. [name_m]Just[/name_m] trying to enjoy ourselves. And I started taking prenatal vitamins a few months before TTC as well.

The big thing we did not accomplish was buying our own home - we were renting. But it ended up not being a big deal really. We ended up buying when my daughter was 15 months old. If this is on your list, I will say it’s probably easier to save, house hunt, manage all the paperwork, and move without a toddler – but it can be done!

We’re going to be TTC this summer. A few of our plans have had to change due to the pandemic but it’s not all bad.

We both have jobs and are working from home so are saving a fair amount on travel alone at the moment. Wedding last year took a big eat on our finances so this is helping us rebuild our savings.

Unfortunately things like passing my driving test and moving house are on hold indefinitely at the moment, we wanted to move out of our rented flat and buy a house nearer to the in-laws.

First time around (2016 TTC prep):

  • Paid off all our debt and I got my degree
  • Moved states and bought a house
  • Had savings for pregnancy (including out of pocket homebirth plus what our out-of-pocket insurance maximum would have been had I had to transfer to hospital…I didn’t) and postpartum expenses (including postpartum doula support during the first six weeks postpartum)
  • Maintained my ideal TTC weight
  • Preconception health checkup, pap, bloodwork and titers, etc.
  • Got my wisdom teeth out and took new dental xrays
  • Took a quick vacation just the two of us
  • Continued to implement health conscious decision-making in food and exercise choices. I followed a preconception diet, mostly including extra organ meats and fish, green leafies, probiotic and prebiotics foods, etc.
  • Cleaned up our food prep and storage, drinking water, cosmetics etc. to limit exposures to environmental toxins and contaminants
  • Continued to track my cycles but geared up to switch from preventing pregnancy to timing for pregnancy
  • Took two workshops with DH at our local adult community education center. One was about the decision whether to have a child or not. The other was about preparing for a healthy pregnancy.

I like to think everything we did helped. We got pregnant right away and carried to term with a healthy baby, but I would have tried so hard not to blame ourselves if that hadn’t been the case. Now I’m pre-TTC for my 2nd pregnancy, third child (we adopted our second). We are unsure when we will start, but sometime between the very end of 2020 ([name_u]November[/name_u]/[name_u]December[/name_u] at the earliest) and the middle of 2021.

This time around, we plan on:

  • Setting aside cash for another planned homebirth and more birth and postpartum doula support as well as babysitting help for the bigger two during the transition/while I’m healing and for maximal time for DH off of work
  • Preconception health checkup with bloodwork and pap (the first one since pre-TTC 4 years ago)
  • Continue fertility tracking
  • Get to my ideal TTC weight range (this one is the biggest one that will take the most conscious effort). I got back to my pre-pregnancy weight by my elder son’s first birthday. I was very happy with that as a goal (9 months on, 3 months recovery, 9 months off) and even happier I was able to do it. [name_m]Alas[/name_m], I gained about a pound a month for the 18 months we waited to adopt (I chalk it up to the stress of that process)… so I have about 20 lbs I would like to lose before trying again. :expressionless: Going to get on that starting now and I think when I’ll be able to lose the weight will in part dictate when we actually start trying. I would like to lose a pound a week for the next 5ish months and then maintain for a couple months before trying, but that timeline may be too ambitious. We will see. DH also gained weight during our adoption process so if he can lose alongside me we will hopefully both be golden and get lucky (luck favors the prepared) again and be able to conceive easily this final time around and have a healthy pregnancy, birth, postpartum, and beyond. :crossed_fingers: