With baby #2 approaching, there’s soooo much to think about. I remember being totally overwhelmed when I was pregnant with Riley and now it’s not that much different. But now I’m wondering how this will effect Riley, how it will effect our family of three, my job, our marriage, our life. The only one I’m not worried about it effecting is the dog. But actually, now that I think about it, she’ll probably get even less attention and that makes me worry for her too. An attention-starved dog is not a good thing. Think poop on the floor.
I learned last week some information about maternity leave at my current job. It’s not good. I knew when I was working at my old job that the maternity leave was exceptional. Don’t get excited, people. We’re not talking one year of maternity leave like they have in other countries (unless that’s an urban legend, and I almost think it is). The maternity leave was 6 weeks of pay. I ended up using 2 weeks of vacation time to stretch my maternity leave out to 8 weeks. When I went back to work, it was hard. And I cried.
I told myself that if we did this crazy baby thing again, I think 10 weeks would be ideal.
But now, reality. My job, for all the greatness it offers, benefits are not one of them. Their maternity leave is technically short term disability, which accounts to 60% of your pay for 4 weeks. Four measly weeks! Granted, thanks to FMLA, you have the ability to take 12 weeks off total. But I cannot go three months without a full paycheck. I mean, really, who can?
So it looks like at this point, my dream of a 10-week long maternity leave very well may not happen. Sure I can use 2 of my 3 weeks of vacation to stretch it out to some sort of pay for 6 weeks, but honestly, i CANNOT go back to work after only six weeks. We need to figure out how to be a family of four. A 6-week old is so….tiny. And helpless. And dependent on Mom. So, no. I will not do that.
Families mean sacrifice. That’s nothing new to us. So baby #2 is no exception. We will sacrifice for him or her before they are even here. We figured out how much money we’ll need to save up before the July due date. And we’ll do it. Because we’re awesome parents and we love our babies. Here’s hopin’.