“You are where?” I ask. (This is the second call).
“Going south on Avenue,” she answers. “Just get me to Bathurst and I’ll be fine.”
Cheryl Hickey is tired — and with everything she’s juggling lately, she has every right to be. Today the fatigue is showing up in a brief inability to find her way to my house (she’s been there before).
The gorgeous and talented host of ET Canada is also a friend of mine, so we’ve decided to make this a combo play date and interview … if she can just get here.
Seven months ago she gave birth to her first child, a son named Jaxson. Her favourite part of the day is first thing in the morning: “That yummy smile and hugs … minus the poop, I love changing his diaper ’cause he gets so happy and so excited.”
Viewers got a brief glimpse of the post-baby Cheryl when she returned to ET Canada to cover the red carpet at the Grammys — a little less than four months after giving birth.
Since we both work in an industry that relies on appearance so heavily, I couldn’t help but ask if she felt a lot of pressure to get rid of the baby weight.
“I worked with a personal trainer in my basement doing circuit training and I went dairy-lactose-free and gluten-free.” Jaxson had “wicked colic,” and Cheryl was nursing, so she made the dietary changes for him, as an attempt to help ease his crying.
“I did it for him but found the weight falling off, and I felt better eating that way. I still do.
I have to admit I don’t work out right now or since the Grammy Awards but do plan on getting back at it. For being in this business it wasn’t that bad putting the weight on because I knew I was healthy and doing it for him.”
Other than her brief Grammy appearance, Cheryl always planned to take a full six months off for maternity leave and then return, working part-time hours until this coming fall. But her plan didn’t go exactly the way she’d expected.
“The week before I went back I was tears all over the place.… On the day, there was a cry right when I left … there was a cry on the way to work. When I got to work, I was fine, but I was Michael Andretti on the way home.”
And as most moms will also attest — whether they work outside the home or not — once a child arrives, you become an expert at time management.
“I don’t feel I’m neglecting anything. I’m getting everything I used to do done — just in a shorter amount of time.” And from what I see, I think I can safely say Cheryl is one of the most hands-on moms I know.
With our tea getting cold and our babies getting fussy, it’s time to wrap it up. “Last question: what would you say to all the new moms who are getting ready to head back to the work world?”
“Hold on!” she says and laughs. And maybe get a good GPS.