Friday, September 4, 2009
Secret 26: An S on my chest?
While I was pregnant with Erin I was a waitress in a casino. I dreamed of having a Monday to Friday job with holidays and weekends off. So when the opportunity came up to be an administrative assistant I jumped for it. But here's where it got tricky... When I started I was 6 months pregnant but it wasn't obvious (I'm tall so the baby doesn't stick out as far). I was being hired to replace a girl who was leaving after the birth of her own baby, due 6 days before me. I did not tell them I was pregnant because, having already had two children, I knew I bounce back quickly and I just wouldn't take time off.
My obstetrician was still fairly green, having only completed his residency recently. This made him much easier to push around. When I first told him that I wasn't going to take time off he tried to insist that I take 2 months. Um, no... Three kids and a mortgage means I can't. At a later appt he asked me to take 1 month. No. Then 2 weeks, etc. Can you tell I was wearing him down?
At 8 months along I told my bosses about it. I had to as I was finally beginning to look obviously pregnant and the sweater wasn't going to cut it anymore. They were LIVID. The manager asked why I didn't tell them in the interview (Legally I didn't have to and I wanted the job?) and I pointed out to them that it wasn't relevant since I won't be taking time off. The office manager (a mother of two) sputtered a little and said that you can never know what will happen. I had already had two kids. I knew that my pregnancies are easy (not even morning sick. sorry.) and this would be no differnet. They were angry but they didn't fire me.
At my last doctor appointment, a week before my due date, my doc asked me to AT LEAST take a week. Well, my bosses were angry and that just wasn't going to happen. I pointed out that if he induced me on a Wednesday then I would take Thursday and Friday off and he'd have the weekend. It's almost a week. He looked at the calendar, said "Today is wednesday. How about today?" and I went in to have a baby. I took a grand total of 5 days off.
When I went back to work my boss said I must have an S on my chest. His wife later told me that they didn't even believe I would come back until I did. But after that I got a lot of respect around the office. Go figure, since I was just doing what I needed to be done. The one time that I wasn't trying to impress my boss at all, I did.