My husband and I just found out via my new, shiny, residency contract that my program (4-years long, medical (not surgical)) offers a significant perk of paying about $10k in adoption fees for employees and their families. We've always talked about becoming foster parents or adopting in residency or just after, but we never realized it might be to our advantage to consider doing it a bit sooner (maybe around PGY-3 or PGY-4?). I'd love some advice from anyone who's done either of these things.
Some background -- my husband is a superstar; he's in education and has been a teacher or school leader throughout our marriage, and found an awesome job in the city we're moving to. He's also planning on starting a doctoral program part-time online, to finish when I finish residency. We're open to staying for a chief year or moving for a fellowship, although I want to do primary care and so doubt I'd do that. Obviously, all of this stuff (my husband's schedule, his doctoral stuff, being a resident) is flying around in my head, and this decision is certainly not urgent, but we got excited at the idea that we could pursue something that's long been a dream of ours, and during residency training! Anyone have any advice for an ideal time to do something like this? Has anyone else ever done so! (Obviously, there is no "ideal" time, but some are better than others, and I figure 2-months into intern year isn't one of them!).
Thanks for the tips!
So thankful for this community.
- Future mom and east-coast resident, currently box-packer and barely-a-physician in the midwest
Saturday, August 9, 2008
A birth mom chose us. We don't know the baby's gender. It was so easy, really fell into place with minimal effort (but a lot of stress) on our parts.
How to plan our FMLA has been a nightmare. If she goes early, the following will have to be adjusted.
She is due 12/3, but it is a planned section, so we think she'll probably be scheduled at 38 or 39-ish weeks and her state is half the country away from ours. If we are lucky, they'll deliver her 11/24, the Monday before Thanksgiving. I'm off from 11/24 through Wed 12/3 and then start a week of nights on 12/4. We have to stay in the state of the birth for 7-14 days for legal shenanigans before we could bring the baby home. I could, if need be, fly back a.m. of 12/4 if we still aren't allowed to leave the state and leave Husband there with the kids (pleural...neato!).
We think Husband, whose job is in accreditation, will work from home in December, something he is able to do in around the holidays. I will go ahead and work through my current schedule, which is set through January 4th, then take eight weeks of FMLA.
Why, as an adoptive mother, do I feel guilt for taking FMLA? If they were to cut this baby out of my own uterus, I wouln't think it extraordinary to stay with the baby for awhile. I haven't gotten a lot of flack for it at work, but the discomfort I feel is totally self-inflicted.
As Mothers in Medicine, sometimes we have to be better, stronger, faster than our colleagues to avoid being judged. And sometimes, we do it for ourselves, as in, "Look at me. I'm still a good doctor even though I have a new baby."
Meanwhile, please pray this goes through. The birth mom is mature and intelligent and already has three children, but we know this could go wrong anytime, even after the baby has been born.
Isn't it amazing that we could be so attached to a person we've not met, who hasn't even been born, who isn't our blood relative?
Love is amazing.