I am so excited to have reached another milestone. Today I am 35 weeks pregnant with 35 days to go. 35 DAYS TO GO! We're talking a little over a month. Holy crap! At this point I'm not nervous. Maybe that is because work has been keeping me busy and I haven't really had a chance to actually sit down and think about just how my life is going to change having a baby of my own. But the thought of seeing her little face and knowing that she is healthy makes me really excited.
I don't know if I had mentioned previously, but my plan is to work all the way up until I deliver. If I wanted to take off some time beforehand I'd have to use my vacation and sick time and I don't want to do that (unless the doctor takes me out early for some reason...then I can apply for short term disability). I will be taking 12 weeks of leave. The first part of the leave is my "maternity leave". My company offers 6 weeks leave for a vaginal delivery and 8 weeks for a c-section. The maternity leave is covered by short term disability. The first week is unpaid and the rest is paid at 80% of my weekly salary. Not bad. So depending on my type of delivery, I will get paid 80% for 5-7 weeks. The additional 4-6 weeks (again, depending on my type of delivery) will be covered by the wonderful Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) which allows a mother to take up to an additional 12 weeks of leave without fear of losing her job. FMLA is unpaid.
So after thinking about my maternity leave I started thinking about how our budget needs to change to accomodate my loss in wages (for the time while I'm on maternity leave) and the added expense of a newborn (diapers, wipes, clothes, etc.). I'm planning to breastfeed, which is probably one of the things that I am most terrified of, so I'm hoping I can keep the cost of formula out of our budget. Not only that, we also need to take into consideration the cost of putting Courtney in daycare once I return to work. Luckily I have a friend who has offered to watch her for me so I don't have to put her in a daycare center. I am thrilled with this since I like the idea that she will have the one on one attention, only be a few miles away, and can hopefully avoid all the germs that tend to go around at a center. We haven't talked price yet, but I plan to discuss that with her soon. I mean, she wont be starting daycare until around September. We have some time.
Remember the sneak peek I gave you earlier this week? The photos were taken by the wonderfully talented Jessica Peterson at One Tree Photography. Go to her website to check them out. She only posted 12 so far. In the next 2 weeks she'll have a gallery of 30 for me to choose from.
And to finish, a little about how Courtney is doing this week:
Your baby doesn't have much room to maneuver now that she's over 18 inches long and tips the scales at 5 1/4 pounds (pick up a honeydew melon). Because it's so snug in your womb, she isn't likely to be doing somersaults anymore, but the number of times she kicks should remain about the same. Her kidneys are fully developed now, and her liver can process some waste products. Most of her basic physical development is now complete — she'll spend the next few weeks putting on weight.