Harriette Cole: I’m freaking out about having triplets

3 months ago
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DEAR HARRIETTE: I recently found out that I’m expecting triplets. While I’m overjoyed by the news, I can’t shake this overwhelming feeling of fear and anxiety.
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• Harriette Cole: What I’d say to the woman who insists on a $1 million engagement ring I am a first-time mom, and triplets don’t run in my family, so this was a huge surprise to me and my husband. The thought of caring for three newborns at once is daunting.

I’m worried about everything from finances to simply managing the day-to-day tasks.

Our families have offered to fly in and help, as we don’t live in the same state as them; however, they won’t be able to stay for that long because they all have their own jobs and lives they need to attend to.

I have six months to get ready, but it feels like six days! How can I overcome these fears and prepare myself for this new journey as a first-time mom of triplets?

DEAR WELCOMING THREE: Set up the nursery with everything you need for the children. Find help locally through your network of mothers, your health care facility or your friends so that you do not need to rely solely on your family.

Speak to a financial adviser about family planning. It’s never too early to map out a financial strategy to care for your triplets.

Consider getting a midwife or doula to support your birth and immediate aftercare.

Do your best to plan ahead. This will help you when you are exhausted or at your wits’ end. Look for a support group of other moms and, if you can find one, moms of multiples.

If you want a midwife and need financial support, reach out to birthfund.com, a new not-for-profit started by activist, media personality and mom Elaine Welteroth.

DEAR HARRIETTE: I have an upcoming birthday trip planned in Hawaii, and I’m unsure about the etiquette of asking the people I’ve invited to contribute toward the cost of the trip.

These are mostly close friends and acquaintances from college.

Is it considered acceptable to request that guests pay a share for the trip, or is this not a common practice? I want to ensure that everyone is comfortable with the arrangements. Any insights or advice would be nice.
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• Ask Amy: Where I grew up, this would be considered alarming DEAR BIRTHDAY GIRL: Your friends should not assume that you are paying for their trip, even though it is your birthday. It is important to be clear with them what the anticipated activities and expenses will be.

I would suggest that you build an itinerary that includes activities you do together and time when they can be on their own. If you can, plan a meal a day that you pay for, which can be just for the food or for food and drink. Organize with the hotel or resort for a group discount for rooms, and let your guests know how to access that.

If you plan your trip thoroughly and communicate clearly about every detail, your guests will understand the commitment they are making and plan their individual trips accordingly.

Harriette Cole is a lifestylist and founder of DREAMLEAPERS, an initiative to help people access and activate their dreams. You can send questions to askharriette@harriettecole.com or c/o Andrews McMeel Syndication, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.…Read more by Harriette Cole

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