Our January cover star and radio presenter Bailey Schneider gets candid about going back to work too soon after having a baby, and the challenges she faces as a mom to baby George while still trying to juggle her career.
Born and raised in Johannesburg, Bailey is a true foodie, a passionate animal lover, and enjoys working out. But it’s her latest lifetime achievement, motherhood, that’s made her life that much fuller.
While becoming a first-time mom is her most important “job” to date, Bailey is determined to bounce back after baby and come back stronger than ever.
We chat to her about juggling a baby and a demanding career:
You’re back in business. How does it feel to be on air again with Smile 90.4FM after recently having a baby?
It feels really good to be back doing what I’m passionate about and to research topics for air that offer adult stimulation and aren’t only about babies.
How has the adjustment been, getting back into radio after taking time off to have your baby?
I went back to work after only 10 weeks and if I’m completely honest, it definitely was too soon. But I’m making it work and adjusting to the juggling act by creating my new norm. On my first day back, there were definitely many tears. I must admit that I think it was worse in my head than it was in reality. It was awesome to see my work colleagues again and talk about adult things, but when my show was over, I couldn’t wait to get home to baby breath and cuddles. Taking that little break from him makes me miss him and appreciate our time together even more.
Take us through your daily routine as a mom and businesswoman…
My life has completely changed. I express breast milk at around 5.30am, which is when I sit on my laptop and start reading through news and research for my radio show. I feed my son at around 6am and then sit down at around 7.30am to continue doing my show prep. Once all the features are prepped and put into our show’s format, I’ll send that off to my co-host, Maurice. I express again at around 8.30am, feed George again at 9am and then write and photograph content for my blog, Vanilla Blonde. I usually have voice-overs to record or meetings – sometimes I’m able to bring my son, but if not my husband looks after him.
I get home by 11:30am to express again, feed George and get ready for the show. I leave home at 1:30pm and my husband looks after our baby boy, which is wonderful, to get to Smile 90.4FM on time. Maurice and I record some features and meet with our programme director and station manager to go through the show’s content and tweak it, then at 3pm we are ready for a fun afternoon of the Smile Drive until 6pm. I get home by about 6:30pm to express, then it’s bath time and bed time for baby up until about 20.30pm.
We then cook dinner and sit down to chat about our days or watch a series, but sometimes I head out again to MC an event.
Why is it important for you to maintain that “businesswoman” image?
Becoming a mom is one of the most amazing (and by far the hardest) jobs I do, but it also doesn’t mean that I no longer have dreams and have let go of my career goals, which I have worked hard on for the past 17 years. I also want to give my baby the best life I can and to show him that when you do what you love, working hard (and smart) is a pleasure! Life is wonderfully full. It’s all about finding a new norm – some days I get it right and some days are right-offs and I learn from them.
What are your short-term career goals going forward?
Getting back into MC work – something I absolutely love doing, and creating great content for my YouTube channel and blog. I also have another project on the go that I can’t speak about just yet.
Tell us a bit more about your blog? Do you still consider yourself an active blogger is it now primarily mommy-focused?
My blog, Vanilla Blonde, is a lifestyle blog that is sort of like my diary on my small piece of the internet – it’s an extension of me. I write about my personal experiences, beauty and fashion, recipes, travel and now that I’ve become a mom, I’ve added my experiences of my pregnancy and motherhood. I love that my blog has grown up with me. My audience has experienced everything from my earlier break-ups and career moves to my engagement and wedding plans and now my new family. My blog brings me great joy to write and I am sad that I haven’t been able to blog as often as I used to, but I know my audience understands where I’m at in terms of settling with a new baby.
Your husband, Socrates aka Sox, is a well-known DJ. How do you deal with both of you being in the entertainment industry?
I love that we are both in the entertainment industry, because we really understand each other and what the industry entails. He is my biggest cheerleader and I am his. I also love that our times are flexible, so we get to spend a lot of time together.
Xanet is an award-winning journalist and Living and Loving’s digital editor. She has won numerous awards for her health and wellness articles and was a finalist for the Discovery Journalist of the Year in 2009 and again in 2011 for the Discovery Best Health Consumer Reporting and Feature Writing category. She is responsible for our online presence across social media channels and makes sure our moms have fresh and interesting articles to read every day. Learn more about Xanet Scheepers.