Ughhh. I dread this. I mean, I know what to expect in a way since I've been through it before...which means I'll live, we'll all live...but now with two kids it is just going to kill me for the first couple weeks. It is what it is.
I've figured out my leave, using my vacation/personal days/sick days. So I think, retroactively applying those days across my leave, I'll wind up with only 2 1/2 weeks where I wasn't fully paid. That's not bad, really, when it comes down to it. And that is because I am also keeping a week of vacation stashed aside for Aruba in November. Which I will desperately need by then, I am sure.
Now to get on my soapbox, since I have to get it out somehow....
What is wrong with the US? Really. We are the most advanced country in the world, and we treat our people like crap when it comes to having babies. Every candidate, every politician talks about the importance of family and creating a strong foundation. What a load of crap. There are a few things that just don't fly with me:
- Only two nights in the hospital. Yes, I did it both times...regular delivery, and I've survived. A woman's milk doesn't even come in by then but you are encouraged to breastfeed, only you don't know what the heck you're doing, and it creates a serious amount of stress. Healing is less of an issue that the breastfeeding, here, for me.
- FMLA (Family Medical Leave Act), provisions. This is the government basically saying that you can take 12 weeks off for having a baby and come back to your job. But as for figuring out how you can sustain your income during that period, well, you're on your own, sister, unless you happen to work for a super-generous company. While I'm at it, let me give a big ol' shout-out to NY state for the crappy compensation that accompanies the "disability" for this period (see my "Part I" post).
- FMLA, duration. 12 weeks is nothing. I know most people who may read this are educated enough to know that Europe in particular allows a much longer period to bond with your newborn child.
- FMLA, application. I actually had to add this...C reminded me that small companies aren't even held to honor this. Which, having owned a small business myself for a year and a half, I understand why. But...it does leave a lot of people hanging out there.
I know...if I don't like it, move to Canada (well, we'll see how the election goes in November). If we didn't just rebuild our house, I may ask C to consider it.
Oh, that reminds me of a hilarious blog...Stuff White People Like. See, there's the threatening to move to Canada thing on here. I am not unique, clearly.
Part III to come next week, unless we have some interesting developments. Like a Powerball win or something. In the meantime, I'm trying not to dwell on it too much.