Now I know I won’t get much sympathy from people in the private sector on this one. They’ll roll their eyes and say “well at least you get family leave”, but here it goes anyways. As a public servant, every fiscal year we get 5 family days for when someone in your immediate family (or a family member living with you) is sick. Before having kids, I had a hard time using up these days. This time, I was done using them by August (within 4 months of getting them). Chris also had to plow through his 5 as well. I had heard that that first year of daycare is hell on kids, that they get sick for everything. They weren’t lying. Henry caught EVERYTHING. We’ve had to use annual leave or leave without pay to make up for those extra times that Henry’s been sick since then. It’s just too much. Luckily (or unluckily depending on how you look at it), sometimes, either Chris or I have been sick at the same time as Henry so we can call in sick ourselves. Only problem is that it takes us longer to recuperate given that we have to keep an eye on a sick kid while being sick ourselves. It’s just so maddening. I had hoped back in April to save a family day for actual Family Day on February 18th since our daycare is closed but now have to use another day of annual leave. I just hate watching my leave being eaten up by something beyond my control. All this time I was saving for future holidays seems to be dwindling. I’m dreading having 2 kids in daycare a year from now. We’ll blow through our family days before the end of April! Then again we’ll have to be cautious about planning vacation leave given that we’ll most likely have to use those days to take care of our sick kids. That’s if we’re given permission to use our vacation leave. The worse option, and the one that’s the rule at Chris’ work, is that once you’re out of family leave, you have to use leave without pay. That one really sucks.
I know this rant will accomplish nothing, and like I said, those in the private industry are probably playing the saddest song on their tiniest violin, it’s just so frustrating and I needed to vent! It would be great if we could get 5 days for each kid, that would be just heavenly.