Uni's baby boom
Story & photos by Andrea Park & Sarah Pfander
Gargoyle assistant editors
Posted Friday, June 1, 2007, The OG, features
AS YOU WALKED around Uni in the final weeks of the school year, you were bound to notice little ladies either with big bellies or growing bumps. That's because five members of Uni's faculty and staff are pregnant!
In the sections below (in order of due date), former subfreshman history teacher and current Uni researcher Jenny Kim, subfreshman counselor Sarah Dewhurst, library assistant Jenny Snow, English department head Elizabeth Majerus, and college counselor Lisa Micele talk about what it's like having a little person inside.
Due: June 6
Gender of baby: Female
Name: “Unfortunately, we may be deciding at the hospital at this point! We are in the process of making that decision.”
Jenny Kim, or fondly known to many Uni-goers as Miss Yi, subbie history teacher extraordinaire, now lives in Boston with her husband, who is currently attending business school at Harvard.
Many people don't know this, but Kim still works for Uni.
She is currently researching a number of related topics for the school, such as the history of gifted education; the continually changing definitions of gifted and talented; the under-representation of historically challenged minorities; and the cognitive, social, and emotional needs of gifted pupils.
On being a mother Kim is excited, especially because of all the support she has received.
“I have a dear circle of pregnant friends and sisters-in-law whom I call all the time for advice,” said Kim. “There is also a partners club at the Harvard Business School that I joined where I have been able to meet other pregnant women who are in similar stages of preparation.”
Though the thought of raising a child in a big city may be scary for some, Kim has found that there are many perks about raising a child in Boston.
“I am very pleased to discover how baby-friendly and accommodating this community is for children,” said Kim. “Cambridge hosts many classes for infants (such as Kindermusik), moms' groups, and family activities at no charge. It's also a walking city full of young families, so you'll find a stroller on every block!”
Furthermore, Kim is very satisfied with the timing of her pregnancy.
“Since my husband is a student (with a flexible schedule) and the community here is VERY baby-friendly, this ‘chapter' of ours in Boston seemed most opportune.”
Due: July 2
Gender of baby: Male
Name: Aaron David Dewhurst
This will be Dewhurst's second child. If Aaron arrives on time, he is slotted to share a birthday with his older brother Aiden.
“Thinking I may never have a little girl was sad,” said Dewhurst. “But now I am excited to have two boys.”
Dewhurst can get up to three months for maternity leave. However, because these three months are not all paid, Dewhurst plans on taking the paid six-week maternity leave over the summer.
She then plans on coming to a part-time job at the beginning of the next school year.
“Maternity leave is too short,” Dewhurst laments.
“It's a national problem. Some countries provide a year! At least I'll have three months with the baby.”
Oh, and Dewhurst has a tip for would-be mothers. Get pregnant now! The maternity clothes nowadays at Target, Old Navy, and Motherhood Maternity are very fashionable, so you don't end up “feeling like a whale.”
Due: Aug. 10
Gender of baby: Girl
Name: Zoë Elizabeth Snow
Jenny Snow has a very busy summer coming up. Not only will she finish her assistantship at the Uni High library and her master's degree in library science this summer, she's also welcoming her first child, Zoë, into the world.
“We're converting our office into a room for the baby, so we've been doing a lot of furniture moving,” explained Snow.
“Our house is in a perpetual state of disarray, but at least we have a plan. Garage sales, Craigslist, and IKEA are taking good care of us.”
As some people are aware, Snow is not from Illinois. In fact, all of her family is in Utah.
“One of the hardest parts for me about being away is missing all of my nephew's firsts,” Snow said.
“I know my family will feel the same way about missing Zoë's small and simple developments. We'll be videoconferencing a lot!”
After Snow finishes her assistantship at Uni in August, she hopes to be on the school's substitute list next year.
“I'd miss you all too much if I had to leave for good,” Snow said.
Elizabeth Majerus will be on leave for
about eight weeks in the fall.
(Gargoyle photo) (click to enlarge)
Due: Sept. 10
Gender of baby: Unreleased information
Name: “We're contemplating names but haven't picked one yet.”
Since this is the second child for Majerus and her husband, fellow English teacher Matt Mitchell, she doesn't feel like she needs to do much preparation.
“I read a lot of books, and Matt and I took a prepared childbirth class the first time,” Majerus said. “This time we kind of feel like we can wing it.”
Though it is exciting that there will be an addition to the Majerus-Mitchell family, the Uni community is sad to see one of its marquee English teachers temporarily leave.
However, Majerus assured us that the English Department “will hire the best and most qualified teachers we can find.”
Majerus will teach a course on Chicano literature for the first couple of weeks of school until her baby is delivered. The English department hopes to hire a teacher who has a strong background in Chicano literature to take her place.
“I'll take about eight weeks off,” Majerus said. “Then I'll come back as a part-time teacher. I'll teach one class, Creative Writing.”
Additionally, Otis — the couple's first child, who is 4 years old — is “very excited about the baby, and looking forward to being a big brother,” Majerus said.
Perhaps with the arrival of the new baby, the Majerus-Mitchell family can form a band.
“Since [Otis] plays drums and Matt and I both play guitar, Otis says, ‘The baby can play keyboards!'”
Gender: Unknown at this point
Name: “I don't want to have my heart set on a name.”
Micele feels “oogie.” Or, in other words, she has motion sickness, is tired, lethargic, and feels large.
“I snack to keep awake,” said Micele, who is head of the Student Services Office.
“But, I snack on healthy foods like apples and carrots. At our weekly SSO meetings, Kassie [Patton] and Sue [Kovacs] make fun of me for having all of these healthy snacks instead of our traditional cookies and brownies.”
On gender, Micele doesn't care. She just wants a healthy baby.
“There's time when I see my sister and her daughter getting their nails done together, and I want a daughter,” said Micele.
“Other times I see Tony [husband Tony Micele] playing ball outside with our nephew, and I want a son. But in the end, I just want a healthy baby.”
So what about us college-bound soon-to-be seniors? No worries. Lisa is having her baby right after early decision applications are sent in and a month before regular admission applications are due.
“It's perfect, really,” Lisa said assuredly. “My only worry is being able to proofread all of the college essays. But, some great teachers like Steve [Rayburn] have already come and volunteered to help proofread. Also, if kids bring them in early enough, I'll be there to read them.”
— External link: A guide to baby names
— External link: Motherhood maternity shopping
— External link: Baby IKEA