Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Our Follow-Up Ultrasound (Thumbs Up) and New Health Benefits at Work (Thumbs Way, Way Down)

Yesterday I had a follow-up ultrasound at the OB's office. It was really, really great to see Jude again. He's head-down right now, and is growing really, really well. The ultrasound tech gave us two extra points because the little bugger is already exercising his diaphragm, which I guess babies don't always do when they're only 31 weeks along. Here's a picture of the little bugger... the tech had to really annoy him to get him to turn so we could see his face. He was (apparently) quite comfy.

So, on to the crappy new benefits my company is(n't) offering.

Under our old owners, I was entitled to eight weeks of paid (100%) maternity leave, plus four weeks of unpaid leave under FMLA. Josh and I have been saving up to make sure we have enough money to cover my unpaid time off. Today I find out that under our new benefits, there isn't going to be any parental leave offered. Instead, they give me an *entire* (note the sarcasm) six weeks of short-term disability. The first week is unpaid, but I can use any personal time I have saved up. The last five weeks are paid at 80%. Then I have an additional six weeks of unpaid leave that I can take under FMLA. *sigh* Besides the fact that it utterly sucks that I'm finding this out nine weeks before our guess date, I find it... man, I can't even think of a word... disgusting might work... that my company feels that six weeks is adequate time to heal from a birth and adequate time to bond with a newborn.

If you haven't picked up on it, today is really sucking the big one for me. I *might* have been able to better deal with the news of my changing benefits if I had actually gotten any real amount of sleep last night. Instead, I went to bed before 10pm, sick to my stomach with exhaustion and couldn't fall asleep. Around 2am, I got up to use the bathroom, and sometime not long after my return to bed, my throat felt like it was closing up. It wasn't the acid reflux that I'm used to. The sensation was different (possibly worse). I was awake until 5am (downstairs on the computer from 4-5) and then headed back to lie in bed until around 8:30am (I went into work late). I feel horrible, and I want a drink. Jameson on the rocks, preferably.

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