Nervous About Taking One Year or More Leave from My Job

Updated on March 02, 2008
S.K. asks from Bothell, WA
7 answers

In 1998, I graduated with my Masters degree and teaching certificate. Since then, I have been teaching and/or working three-quarter or full-time. When my first son was born in 2005, I took three months off and was very lucky to have two great parents to watch him while I went back to work part-time. They have been very kind to continue watching him now while my hours got increased to four full days a week. In March, I am expecting my second son and will probably take three months off again through the end of the school year. I will also have the summer off. My dilemna is whether or not I should take a year leave (or longer) from my job to take care of both of my children. I love my job and it took me five years to finally get into this district, but also realize that I wouldn't want my parents to have the burden of taking care of two children. I also wouldn't want to put either or both of my children in child-care. I am leaning towards taking the year off, but am nervous and scared to quit my job that I have waited so many years to find. Does anyone have any advice as to how to make this easier?

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D.

answers from Portland on

Hi S.,

I was in a similar situation (specoial ed. teacher also in a good school district that I worked hard to get into) and I chose to take the one year leave and am SO glad I did! The district was very supportive and if you have a good long term sub for the few months you will be off anyway, it is easy to reccomend that same person stay for a year long position.

Good Luck!!

3 moms found this helpful
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J.

answers from Portland on

I agree with the others- take the year or more off! After 4 months at home with my second baby, I went back to work part-time (I'm also a school teacher). We hired the MOST amazing nanny ever from January through the end of the school year. While she was incredible- perfect with the kids, doing everything and more than we hoped for, it still wasn't ME. I'll never forget the day it snowed, but not enough to say home from work. All I could think about was how my nanny was getting to share this brand new event with my Anna instead of me.

I took the next year off, and now am in my second year off. I miss teaching an awful lot, but I am very happy with my choice. My colleagues continue to be really supportive when I go back to visit; every single person who is older than me says some variation of, "J., you're making the right choice. You can't ever get those years back." The people who did something similar with their careers swear by it, and the ones who did NOT are very very regretful.

Just keep in touch with your colleagues, attend seminars/workshops now and then so you stay up to date, and especially keep those ties with any administrators you're tight with.

And, don't forget: you can always change your mind! Let's say you decide to take next year off, and then come January you're losing your mind and think it was the worst decision of your life? There is ALWAYS a job out there- whether it's subbing, doing someone else's maternity leave, etc. Your choice for next year doesn't have to be etched in stone. When my mom gave me this same advice, I breathed a huge sigh of relief and allowed myself to let go of my worries over making the "right" choice. I hope it works for you, too.

Good luck!

J.

2 moms found this helpful
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J.M.

answers from Seattle on

I graduated from law school with honors and promptly won a huge land mark case and had a phenomenal career at my feet. My son arrived a few years ahead of schedule, and it wasn't even a close decision. I stayed home with him and I've never regretted it. Do I sometimes feel a pang of envy as I watch my friends work on exciting and interesting cases? Sure. But intellectually I know that I am a well-educated, completely employable woman. I know that I can pick up where I left off in my career and the fact that I took a five year break isn't going to be a blip on the radar. If I had not stayed home with my son, I would have felt guilty, remorseful over putting my career, goals, happiness, interest ahead of my baby. Maybe I have a high opinion of myself (ah . . . who am I kidding? I DO have a high opinion of myself :) - but I just believed that nobody but nobody could provide better care for my son than me. Not the grandparents and DEFINITELY not a paid employee. Me. And I figured my son should have the best.

I don't know if this helps you in any way. I'm obviously very biased toward staying at home. But I do know that different people and families have different needs/goals/desires, etc. Life isn't a one size fits all experience.

1 mom found this helpful
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C.C.

answers from Seattle on

The opportunity to teach will always be there. Your children
will only be infants and toddlers for a short while. I would
definitely encourage you to take that year off.
Talk about nervous. I took seven years off to stay at home with my two youngest children. There is simply nothing to compare to the feeling of joy in my heart for having that experience.
With my first child it simply wasn't an option. I had to work.
We did sacrafice to give me the opportunity to be at home.
The only sacrafice was material. It pales in comparison to
the joy of being with the children.

1 mom found this helpful
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A.H.

answers from Portland on

Take the year off. You'll never get the time back with your children, but you can always return to your job and help other people's children later. I made a choice when I was pregnant to be home with my son until he goes to school (I'm a single parent with no help from the father and I work from home). I just can't imagine someone else raising my child. :)

1 mom found this helpful
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I.D.

answers from Seattle on

I would be a mother first, and only work if you have to financially. Children grow up so fast, you don't want to miss that part of their life. With your education and good job reference, you should have no problem getting another job, if you have to later on. Nana I.

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D.W.

answers from Seattle on

I am a Partylite Consultant. I love what I do and have several Mom's with baby's that do this business. You can start for free by have some friends and family over for your Grand OPening show. With a $350.00 show, you get everything in your starter Kit Free. You can set up for people to view the current book online and take orders over the computer and by phone. Set up party's with your friends that also have babys and offer them a free shopping spree for doing so. They get free product and you get paid. We average $35.00 hr on up for doing this.
Partylite is a very supportive business that offers you to be the CEO of your own business. This is the Only Home based business out there that is Free to start, with no limits on income. My Regional Vice President makes a 6 figure income doing exactly what I'm doing.
You could use this business while you are off to bring in some income, but you would be incharge of your time and schedule, so your parents could watch the baby's a couple evening for 2-3 hours, while you are creating a business and income for your family.
If you are interested in learning more, contact me.
[email protected]____.com
www.partylite.biz/debywhalen
this is my website. :)

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