Being off work and the snow | The Life of K: Being off work and the snow

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

Being off work and the snow

This is my first week off work. In case you're curious, technically my maternity leave doesn't start for another week and a half, but I had some vacation days and some family-related days for birth so I'm using those before starting my leave. My last day was last Friday.

Leaving work this time was much different than last time. If you remember, last time I had an ugly situation at work and ended up starting my leave 2 months before I was due. I was really stressed and it was the best decision I made and don't regret it at all, even though it meant going back to work before Baby J was a year old. In hindsight, the timing worked out perfectly because I was able to get pregnant with this babe when I did and I went back to work with enough time to get Employment Insurance again (you need 600 hours which works out to about 5 months of full time work - if you're in this situation, please do the actual math). Once I qualified for EI, I qualify for top-up from work. Basically, for my 12 months of leave, I get almost my full salary, which is really really great.

I know not everyone is so lucky and I'm sorry if you don't qualify for mat leave or don't get a top-up. I only mention it in case someone is in my situation and would like some advice or to chat about the process. In my experience, dealing with HR isn't always the easiest thing to do and it's nice to hear what other people did/are doing.

So this time I didn't leave early, unless you consider being 37 weeks into a 40 week (on average) pregnancy. I'm considered full term and I really feel like I've earned my leave this time. I feel like I deserve to stay home by myself for 2.5 weeks (again, on average, so depending on when the baby arrives it could be shorter or longer than that). Saturday and Sunday were especially nice because I knew I wasn't in a rush to get everything done. I knew I would have time Monday and Tuesday and so on to do stuff. I did end up vacuuming the entire house while J took Baby J out, but it really needed it.

Monday I was productive too, but it was mostly laundry (probably my favourite chore) and buzzing around. I decided to make a list of things to do. The list is long and somewhat ridiculous, somewhat useful. It has all sorts of things like clean the bathrooms (something that has to happen) and also buy more photo albums (definitely doesn't have to happen with any urgency but it will get me out of the house) and lots in between. There are things that I really should do before the baby comes, but J and I are so laid back that I can see us not doing them ahead of time and I'm completely okay with it.

It really came to light at my last midwife appointment. They have questions they ask based on how far along you are. Because I'm considered term (i.e. baby can come any time) things that I should have done include installing the infant car seat in the car, having my hospital bags packed and having the midwife pager number in my cell phone. I hadn't done any of those things and only now have the pager number in my phone because she made me do it right then. At least we have a car seat and we know where it is and I'm sure I could throw stuff in a bag pretty quickly.

My main concern actually is Baby J. He's definitely the big difference between this time and last time. When you don't have a kid, getting yourself to the hospital really is just about getting yourself physically to the hospital. When you have a kid, you have to have plans in place, a plan for what to do if you go into labour in the middle of the night or the middle of the day... where will Baby J be? Where will he go? Who will look after him? Thankfully our day care provider is an all-star and will take him if we need her to (I'm thinking middle of the night if we HAVE TO GO RIGHT NOW and there's no time for anyone to get to us) but otherwise? Well, I don't have a plan for otherwise.

This is why people schedule their births. Not that I would ever do it or think it's a good idea, so let's not get into that now.

So these are the things that are going through my head: what to do with Baby J, that the toilets really need to be cleaned, wow it's really snowing outside, my bed is so comfy that I might not get out of it today, what should I have for lunch... all very important things.

Such is the life of a girl, waiting for a baby. I really could get used to this, except I'll be quite happy to not be quite so large and I'm really looking forward to meeting this little one. Believe me, we're ready with all sorts of pink.


  1. I was so stressed out about what to do with the kids...especially this time since there was an additional one. Luckily I knew I was getting the cervigel so I had somewhat of an idea. But when I went into labour with K it was in the day and my mum could come over. Good luck, I am sure it will work out!! Remember that if time is tight you could bring Baby J with you and call your parents or inlaws to meet you at the hospital to take him. that was my plan if I went into labour when Phil was at work and had to get to the hospital.

  2. Your plan was to drive yourself and the kids to the hospital? Crazy lady!