Thursday, May 28, 2009

pre-birth(unpaid) leave?

I had my first "I assume you are expecting." comment, I guess I really am showing(though I still think I look like I drink too much beer)...

I'll try and upload belly shots next week, when I get my NEW computer!!! I've been using an old hand-me-down computer, which has worked fairly well, and been a great help, but now that I am working online every day(teaching a summer online writing course) I am ready for the new, speedy one! It should arrive by next Friday.

I am having a quandary about time off next semester. I thought I'd be required to take the semester off, as it isn't like high school(etc) where they just bring in a substitute. But, I was told there is no set protocol.

I am currently scheduled to just teach one class, 2 days a week, class time is 1 hr. 10 minutes. The rest of the work is stuff I can do from home. Most weeks, that is just another 5 hours. So, less than 10 hrs a week of work.

I don't want to have to take off all of Sept. and Oct. for my Nov. due date, especially as I don't get paid, if I don't teach. Also, I love the class, and it is such a breeze to teach now(as I've taught this class, at this school, for 3 years).

If I did teach, I'd just set the class up to have a sub(I'd have to find one) for the week of the birth(whenever that may be) and/or make assignments and an online plan for that time period. The semester ends in the first week of Dec. and before that, we have thanksgiving break. I talked to a friend in academia who returned to classes the week after her son's birth and said it was fine, and that if I love teaching it, to do it(that she would)... The main worry: I don't want to cheat the students.

If I don't teach: we are out the money, but were expecting to be, so could manage, thriftily. I may be a bit stir-crazy those 2 months, or may like all the freedom. Either way, it will be nice to have the extra time, either not working at all, or such a reduced schedule.

Because the hour requirements are so minimal, I am seriously pondering it..


  1. Hmmm. That's a tough one. Personally, I think if I could manage financially, I would take the time off.

    Can't wait to see belly pics!!

  2. Ditto - if I could manage it financially, take the time off. Less stress (even the minimal kind) is good.

  3. It sounds like a low stress job that you enjoy. I like working close to my due date, it helped the time pass faster and also needed the money. As long as there is no clinical or school issue why you can't work, it's entirely up to you.

  4. I am in a similar situation. Due at the end of October and trying to figure out when to stop teaching. Here's the advice I have found helpful. You will want to keep busy for the last trimester in order to avoid being bored/worrying about the big day, etc. You will also want a little time to yourself-maybe the last few weeks -just for comfort and to do some things for yourself. Seems to make sense.

  5. My guess is that you WILL want to teach in Sept/Oct and WONT want to teach in Nov/Dec. Like maybe really, really won't want to teach even for a few hours. Anything else you could do to pick up some cash in Sept/Oct that would end then?

  6. Tough decision, Poppy. A lot of my clients work until their due date at part-time schedules, and like the distraction - as long as work isn't stressful...they like the distraction, and still having plenty of hours to do what they want for baby prep and relaxation.

    However, I've never had anyone be happy about returning to work right away, even at a reduced schedule. That will be the hard part. Granted, it'd only be 5 hours away from home, but those first few weeks are the time when more than anything you want your freedom to be with baby - of if you can get away, to go have a quiet latte by yourself for an hour, not work.

    Good luck in your decision - I can't believe it's November! That's coming right up!

  7. I think I would do it. I continued working thru and beyond my due date. It was a little tiring, but not too bad. Certainly if there are any signs of premature labor, etc, you should reconsider.
    Also, I think the benefit of having you as a teacher will outweigh any disadvantage to having a substitute for a few weeks. :)

  8. I'd stay and do the reduced hours. It's good to feel participating in the world, especially because you like to teach. And.. of course... the money is always welcome... but mostly now.
    btw, I didn't know you taught writing! is that creative writing?