Wednesday, January 6, 2016

The Costs

We found out today that our coming baby is a
I wasn't surprised.  When I first found out I was expecting, I thought "boy" mostly because my last was a boy and boy was on my mind.  (It also would have been convenient because, with similar birthdays, the clothes would have fit.)  But the last month or so, I changed my mind.  The baby moves so gently.  Lots of movements, mind you, but not jolting or forceful.  I tried to chalk it up to her being small yet, 
but I had a feeling.

I was at the doctor today and we were discussing the financial impact of children.  
We've paid out tens of thousands of dollars in doctor and hospital fees just to have the children.
With only the first two, we've paid over $15 thousand in oral surgery and orthodontia.
Our not-quite-paid-for Suburban will soon be too small to fit the entire family.
Any time we travel, we have to either rent a house or two hotel rooms.
Piano, dance, soccer and other extracurricular lessons add up.
We built a house with more bedrooms, we can't make do with one couch, don't get me started on groceries or gas bills, and even a visit to the dentist with not a cavity amongst the scores of examined teeth is $200.

A close friend is going to Florida next month for two weeks.  She went to Mexico last month.
Another friend is taking her family on a 10 week sabbatical to France and Mexico.
A cousin took her family to Dubai, Zambia, and Zimbabwe.
Yet another went to the Bahamas to swim with the freaking dolphins.

It is hard for me to not be jealous of these grand adventures, even as I am happy for them.  
I want to see the world!  I want to show it to my children!
I want a bigger TV than the 19" screen we've been watching for practically my entire adult life.
I want a nice car that fits in regular parking spaces.

And then I look down at the sleeping boy in my arms

and I feel the gentle bumps and pushes of the babe within my womb

and I watch my boy dance

and I listen to my daughter play the piano

and I see the beautiful picture my child painted

and I watch a daughter make a meal for her family

and I hear the girls laughing together when they are supposed to be falling asleep

and I see my boys vigorously dueling with their light sabers in the living room

and I see one child tenderly care for another

and I understand.

I may never see the white sands of the Cook Islands.
I may never take my children to the Pyramids of Giza.
My cars will always be old, my TV small, my house unfinished.

But, honestly, how could I ever find treasures greater than these?

Holding my sick baby last week.


  1. Thank you for the beautiful perspective Emily! Love it!

  2. So true Emily! I have these thoughts...

  3. You've said it so well. It's no easy thing, but so very rewarding.

  4. I've just been catching up on all your posts that I have missed the last few months. I enjoy reading each of them, but this is my favorite!! You have expressed so well the same thoughts and feelings I so often have. Thank you!