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Stephanie Montanez's picture

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When I found out I was expecting the best thing ever (my baby boy!) I had just turned 23 years old. I had finally moved out on my own with my husband and been employed with my company going on two years.

Unfortunately, my joy was short lived and I was rapidly overwhelmed with worries about money. My husband was unemployed at the time and my job did not offer paid maternity leave! I tossed and turned for days not able to sleep wondering how we were going to survive 6 weeks without pay. My husband and I eventually decided to break our lease and move back into my mother’s home for the duration of my pregnancy in order to make ends meet after our son arrived.

I was very fortunate to have my family’s support during this tough time and was able to stay afloat while I bonded with my nugget! Having paid maternity leave would have greatly benefitted me and every other expecting mother I knew at the time, because we all know that pregnancies come in packs. The ability to be able to bond with this new life you created without the stress of figuring out how you are going to eat and pay rent seems to be presented as a luxury instead of a basic human right.

Here’s to hoping for better days!


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