It’s a Good Day Because I Made the Bed. And Not Necessarily a Bad Day Because I Spilled Breast Milk on the Cherry Tomatoes.

i just maybe wouldn’t eat at my house for the time being, if you are totally vegan and opposed to human byproducts. 🙂

so i don’t know if i’ve said this enough, but i’m LOVING being on leave and home with henry. it helps that it’s the summer and so it’s beautiful out and we’re largely able to be out and about in it. plus, friends and family are off or on vacation, so we’re able to see a lot of them.

i officially have 6 weeks left of my baby sabbatical. i am fortunate enough to work for a large company that pays 100% of my salary for 6 weeks post delivery (same for adoption, 8 weeks if c-section delivery). and then i have a few weeks of vacation i’m using…and then i’m finishing off a total of 12 weeks FMLA (job-protected leave, unpaid). i went back and forth about going without pay for a few weeks and debated whether i needed that much time off..but in the end i decided i want to savor every minute i get with him while he changes so quickly and while he’s establishing a sleep schedule (yea right) and both of us are learning to nurse, etc.

and i really feel lucky to have gotten 6 weeks with full pay. i know people who got nada or whose small business could only give them a week or two. but then, on the flip side, there’s almost every other country in the free world that mandate companies provide extensive maternity leaves and sometimes even paternity leaves (w/ government subsidies i think?).

so it’s nice that these countries focus on family values. and there’s evidence that longer maternity leaves help encourage positive things like longer breast feeding. but who does pay for it? it looks from this fascinating chart (on wikipedia, so it must be right) like most of europe pay at least 4 mos leave at 100% and then offer up to several years at some % of salary. and lots of time this can be used as paternity leave instead/in addition. it’s amazing. totally different paradigm.

sounds ideal, but in reality, how would it play out? would it put small businesses out of business? what about taxes? who’s paying for it? and what about all that time away from work for the employees? wouldn’t you lose ground? clients? up to date knowledge?

hmmm….any thoughts on this?

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