There are some very special moments in life where you move through important passages and encounter new developments and milestones along the way. But forget about graduating, buying a home, and starting a new job as nothing compares to the moment when you become a first-time parent. One day your world consists of you and your partner or spouse. Then, in a flash, two become three as a new baby is born. Trying to figure out if you are ready for kids is complex and there’s no instruction manual and you suddenly find yourself with big responsibilities that will last the rest of your life. With so much happening, it can be difficult to know what you should be doing and when you should be doing it.
A Child Costs Money
As a first-time parent, you should know that the arrival of your little one comes with a significant price tag. It’s estimated that a middle-class family will spend well over $200,000 on the child between birth and age 18. That’s an amazing amount of money that is often overlooked when you are responding emotionally and lovingly to the new addition to the family. If you ever thought about investing or taking on a new venture that will boost your income, now is the time to get moving. Real estate is always a safe bet, and you can walk through the numbers on an investment by reviewing pro-forma. These estimate acquisition, operational, and disposal costs for assets. A careful analysis of a pro-forma will give you the information you need to decide whether to buy shares in income producing properties. If investing is not an option for you, think of ways to boost your income so you can get ahead and be prepared for the expenses that are about to come your way.
There’s So Much You Don’t Know About Raising a Child
New parents have absolutely no idea how little they know about successfully raising a child. Before your little one was born, you probably focused on the color of the nursery, baby names, and how cute the tiny outfits are. There is so much anticipation and constant questions about the due date, but no advice about the tsunami of changes coming your way. Adjusting to the presence of a baby is truly a learn-as-you-go process. You may read a couple of great books about raising children and hopefully get excellent advice from family and friends, but the deepest learning will come from paying careful attention at the school of new experiences.
You’re Expected to Make Mistakes
So often in life we pride ourselves on doing the very best job that we can. At work, we try to master our craft and produce the best presentations and spot on project plans. The goal always seems to be to strive for perfection and to do it right the first time. When you bring a new life into the world, plans for perfection go right out the door. There are so many emotions, so much drama and interpersonal elements involved in guiding your newborn on a journey to adulthood that is 18 years away. You should just relax, learn to laugh even more and marvel in the magic of it all.