On my first day back to work, I told HR that I was quitting. This was the premium payment that I had to reimburse.
For a dual income family, $346.30 could be seen as a minor inconvenience. In my case I’d been on unpaid personal leave for eight weeks. Bills, groceries, and gas expenses had devoured my $2000.00 short term disability check. Paying this premium felt like a punch to the gut.
Even worse, the HR person with the key to the Mother’s room had left early that day so I was forced to pump in the women’s restroom. I don’t regret leaving that job. Enrolling in my employer’s health care plan for the year was the regrettable decision. Fortunately I didn’t enroll my newborn as he was covered by the state. The premium would have been the same amount as a car payment at that point.
Insurance in the US is a gambling investment. I think about others who don’t even receive benefits from their employers. Unpaid leave placed financial strain on my family. It also taught me to be frugal. Eat out less, cook more (hyper link to recipes). Budgeting on my husband’s wages and my credit card was a nightmare. I didn’t feel financially stable again until a month into my new job!
Healthcare premiums and jobs aside, no one can put a price on the time I spent bonding with my son. Time went by fast, just as everyone said it would. The joys of motherhood outweighed all my worries. I was fortunate to have God and my loving family supporting me. A few weeks off was all I could give my little one but I continue to give every way that I can.