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When should I take maternity leave?
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When should I take maternity leave?

Im pregnant with my first child and due in April, so far its a normal pregnancy with no problems(unless being very tired at the end of every day is a problem lol). Im not sure when to leave my 'work' though. Im in a culinary arts program school that requires that I be up and moving from about 8:30am to about 2:20pm. The only real break that isnt dropped in favor of getting things done or missed in the rush of getting things done is lunch and thats a half hour at best. I dont know when to leave school for maternity leave. Due April 17th. Appreciate some advice, thanks.
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378557_tn?1233252992
Pending your pregnancy continues to go on without any issues, you can work up til as long as you want to. I worked until 39 weeks, but then again I have a desk job.... I suggest taking leave as late as you can so that you have that time off when your baby is HERE, and you can spend time with him/her. Being on your feet won't harm the baby but it'll be hard on you, especially towards the end when you may be swelling and having a lot of back pain. I say set a date to leave with your boss, but they should be understanding that you may want to leave a week or two before the decided upon date.
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378557_tn?1233252992
An added note - time goes by sooooo slow when you're in your last couple weeks. Another reason to stay busy at work, if you can. :)
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461781_tn?1285613081
Well FMLA only covers you for 12 weeks.  Some companies will allow you to use your paid time off without counting off your FMLA as long as your doctor writes doesn't write you off as having to be out on leave for medical reasons.

Then you also want to think about how long do you want to stay home with your baby.  Lets say you start your maternity leave 2 weeks before your due date, that means that you'll have 10 weeks approximately to spend at home with your baby.  I know many women that are back 6 weeks post partum but I would hate myself to go back so early.

Then again, if you have very understanding and flexible employers, they might give you a couple of extra weeks.
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108334_tn?1253647995
I would talk to your instructors, I don't think FMLA applies if you are in school. I worked up until 12 hours before I went into labor. Depending on how you feel and how baby is, play it week by week and then day by day. I was going to be induced on a Wednesday, so I made the Friday before my last day. Turns out I went into labor on my own early the next morning. Hope this helps some.
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178698_tn?1228777938
I would continue school until the time you were told to cut back, stop, or have the baby.  With my first normal pregnancy way back when I worked that whole day and was apparently in labor (however I didn't realize it was labor at the time).  That night I went to the hospital and had the baby the next day.  

You can go to school up until your baby decides to show up or your just ready to cut back on your schedule.  No sense in worrying about having to make up assignments or what not...just do what you can.   Just finish up as much as you can.

If you were actually working I'd give you the same advice because if you cut into your 12 weeks of FMLA you are losing time you can spend at home with the baby.  

See if your instructors can let you finish early if you like ...I mean if time were a luxury i'd get off a week before baby were do and just relax and relax and relax.

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134578_tn?1383690151
Don't assume, unless you have been told so by your employer, that you even get a standard amount of maternity leave.  It depends on the size of the company.  Small employers (that is, ones with not very many employees) are not subject to the FMLA.  So if yours is not a large company, I would definitely ask them now what kind of maternal leave you can expect.  I used to work for a company with 5 employees 1 of whom was part time, and they were not obliged under the law to give even paid vacation leave or anything.  They did, but it was like 2 weeks paid because that was all they could afford.  When one of the women got sick and had to be home a month, they did what they could to help her and she got her job back when she was well, but I can remember what a struggle it was for them to give her an extra two weeks of paid leave because they were also paying a replacement for her at the same time, and there just wasn't that much money in the day-to-day coffers.  So if your employer is small, do ask now.  
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Avatar_n_tn
yea because im not getting paid for being in school the FMLA thing dosent apply, thanks for the help though, with how hectic it is at school im prolly gonna end up leaving earlier rather than later, no sense risking a fall or going into labor in the school kitchen lol. thanks for the advice ^^
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