When Baby was born, there was no doubt in my mind that I wanted to stay home with her instead of returning to work. However, that was not possible financially, so I returned to working when she was six months old.
Since then, Husband has changed jobs and we are now financially able to make this a possibility.
However, I have also switched schools and have been teaching at a place I absolutely love. I have amazing coworkers, the best classes, I get along well with the principal who values my opinion, and I am the Mathematics Department Chair at my school where I am involved in leadership and able to make decisions that affect the entire math department and culture of the school.
I love my job.
But I also love my children, and want to do what's best for my family. Especially after getting the news about the new baby. I want to be there to help her with whatever struggles she will have, or any extra medical attention she will need.
I struggled back and forth, talking it over with Husband, going in circles about what to do. Here was something I had been wanting for so long, but my situation had changed and now I was in a happy place at work. However, my children will only be young once. I'm pretty sure math teachers will still be needed for years to come.
I applied to take the rest of the 2012-2013 school year off, AND the entire 2013-2014 school year off. Sort of like a trial stay at home mom deal.
It used to be common practice for my school district to approve a leave of absence for an entire school year. However, they recently changed their policies and it is on a case by case basis. Thus, in my application, I wrote that I wanted to stay home to take care of a newborn with possible health issues.
I was approved for the entire leave of absence.