Guilford staff celebrate a baby boom


   There has been a rise in Guilford staff having babies! Three teachers have become pregnant, with one baby recently born and two teachers expecting.

    The three teachers have different methods of preparing for their babies. Mrs. Ashley Dickinson, English teacher, is expecting her baby on June 28. 

   “I have thought about preparing myself to be a parent, but I’m trying not to obsess over the multiple possibilities, so I am tackling the immediate changes before the big ones,” said Mrs. Dickinson. 

   Ms. Susan Wesolek, speech language pathologist, is super excited about the involvement and planning of being a parent. Her daughter Sloane was born in August 2021.

   “Everything about becoming a new parent is exciting and overwhelming at the same time,”  said Ms. Wesolek. “It is really fun to watch Sloane grow and develop, and getting to spend time with her is the best thing ever.”

    Generally, when people have babies,the most popular themes for the nursery are animals, watercolors, or outer space. One of the teachers, however, has other plans.

   “If it’s gonna be a boy it’s gonna be a Harry Potter room, if it’s a girl it’s gonna be a Harry Potter room,” said Mrs. Dickinson. 

   Mrs. Olivia Mikulay, choir teacher, has her own plans relating to setting up a nursery.

   “This is our first baby so we have been preparing stuff for awhile,” said Mrs. Mikulay. “The room is green. It has animals and black, white, and gray tones.” 

   When people have a baby they often opt to find out the sex of the baby by getting an ultrasound. Opposingly, one teacher had other plans.

   “I have not found it out,” said. Mrs. Dickinson. “I won’t find out until the day of birth.”

      The combined stress of being a teacher and being pregnant can take a huge toll on people’s energy levels. 

   “Definitely for me and teaching choir, you need a lot of energy for that and I don’t have that anymore,” said Mrs. Mikulay. “Instead of singing I do theory work, I also teach middle school and they have so much more energy than I do.”

    Ms. Wesolek had a similar reaction to the toll of pregnancy and parenting. 

   “I took an extended maternity leave, and both missing work and coming back to work was stressful,” said Ms. Wesolek. “When it was time to return, it was very hard to leave Sloane even though I was excited to see my students and coworkers again. It is a whole new experience to try to juggle work life and mom life. I try not to take work home with me anymore so that I can spend as much time as possible with my daughter.”   

   When teachers go on maternity leave, they have to use their sick days from other years to cover the amount of time they want to leave. There is one downside that teachers face with the limited maternity leave. 

   “They don’t give us enough time, but we can still have our job when we come back<” said Mrs. Mikulay. “Not the same job but at the same place.” 

   Ms. Wesolek expressed a similar opinion.

   “I am thankful that we are able to take maternity leave, especially extended leave,” said Ms. Wesolek.  “It would be really helpful if required maternity leave was paid for by the district.”

   A practice that originated all the way back to Egyptian and Greek civilizations has become a tradition for people who give birth today in America. Expecting parents celebrate their expected birth by hosting baby showers. In addition to this old tradition, new practices have been added, such as giving the expectant parents presents related to their new babies.

   “I had a baby shower with our family and a diaper party with our friends,” said Ms. Wesolek. “A diaper party is where everyone brings a pack of diapers. We got so many diapers that we have not had to buy any yet in six months! Our family was very generous and got us lots of essentials for the baby, lots of books, and adorable outfits.”