I’ve never really worried about my work performance as it relates to pregnancy before.
I work in a low-key environment where one colleague regularly shows up wearing flannel pajama bottoms and more than a few long time employees take BOTH November and December off every year.
What’s the big deal if I have to take 2-3 months off to pop out some new offspring, right? Nobody, besides the one guy I work with regularly, will even really miss me, right?
I dunno …. I’m nervous this time around.
A few weeks ago I was called into an office a few notches above my own and was offered a detail position, with a good possibility of it becoming permanent. I was beyond excited. There was a glitch though. I was being offered the opportunity because the current holder is pregnant and may not be coming back.
In the spirit of full disclosure I had to tell them I too was pregnant, but that I was 100% sure of my return. The response was nothing but positive and congratulatory, and was told some things needed to be discussed but I would hear something soon.
Maybe I’m impatient. I know I’m impatient. In my opinion though, soon has come and gone.
I think their ignoring me while trying to find a candidate that won’t be lactating in the next 6 months. I know I’ll never know the truth. They can’t tell me the truth if that is the problem. We can't sit down and have a frank discussion to solve scheduling problems if that is the problem. If I never move to that office though I know, deep down, it will be their loss. It is something I would be excellent at.
On Friday, I left work an hour early. My sense of smell is kicked up into bloodhound mode lately, and the smells of the office were getting to me. The Sharpie 2 cubes down, the striper-scent Bath and Body works next to me, 3 Xerox machines running at the same time. I couldn’t take it so I left.
My boss was getting ready to leave for the day when I went to sign out myself and I told him I was leaving early. When he asked why, I told him. The Sharpie, the lotion, the ozone - that’s why.
His response? He laughed and said I had nobody to blame for that but myself, as he signed my leave slip.
I know this man is not sensitive. He doesn’t have any children. I know he didn’t mean to be rude. But I also know he absolutely meant what he said.
I kept thinking about this all weekend. Thinking about things I should have said instead of opening and closing my mouth like a guppy. Thinking about whether there is some sort of ‘mommy glass ceiling’ that I never realized existed here before. I would choose the same path a million times over. I would rather have children and a family than promotions. I would choose going home to be with them hands down to working 12 hour days.
I just …. thought I could have both …. and am dismayed by the revelation of my naivety.