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New mum Kristen Davidson hits the ground (and airwaves) running

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It feels like most of Canberra returned to work yesterday. And so did (for the first time in nearly six months) Canberra radio identity Kristen Davidson.

It will be a welcome return to the airwaves for those missing her energetic MIX 106.3 morning hosting with co-host Nigel Johnson.

But Kristen would be lying if she didn’t admit to more than a few return-to-work jitters. For one thing, as a new mum to 5-month-old Hugo, Kristen is emerging from her baby bubble for the first time.

Hosting from 6am-9am five days a week is going to be a new experience now that Hugo’s feelings on the matter have to be taken into account.

And if yesterday’s rather hectic planning day is anything to go by, Kristen is going to need to approach the return with new levels of flexibility and patience.

For one thing, as new-borns have a tendency to do, Hugo thought sleep was optional on Sunday night. And emerging from a bleary state to get off to work, Kristen was then dealt a savage blow – the new nanny called in sick first thing in the morning.

“Let the games begin!” says Kristen of her official first day with a laugh, saying some last-minute shuffling secured her a fill-in nanny for the morning, and a friend has stepped in as back up care for the rest of the week.

“I guess this is what life is going to be like now—welcome to the jungle!”

Kristen and her husband Iain are doing what most new working parents do once maternity leave is over—embracing the juggle.

Because of Kristen’s unorthodox and very early work hours, they have opted for a nanny to come to their home a few mornings a week. The other days, she and Iain, who has a 9-5 job as a national director for Colliers – will muddle through as best they can.

“Right now, because he is so little and because my hours are so early, this is the best childcare arrangement for us, but we are taking it very much on a month-by-month basis!”

MIX 106.3 has also set up a studio in the couple’s home for those days when it really does turn pear-shaped and Kristen is unable to get out the door.

“I guess that is one good thing to come from COVID and that was, I was able to set up here at home to broadcast professionally.”

But her preference – as hard as it will be to kiss Hugo goodbye each morning—is to get into the work studio, sit across from Nige and soak up the fast-paced repartee and energy that is breakfast radio.

“I would be lying if I didn’t say I am looking forward to the chemistry, the laughter, the current affairs and the conversation. I have missed our audience calling in, I have missed Canberra!” she said.

While Kristen has been on maternity leave for six months, prior to that she was working from home since March due to COVID.

“It was wonderful to get back into the office, to put on a pair of heels and some makeup, and to see everyone—although I was wondering would my swipe pass even work it has been so long.”

She cannot promise to be across every single issue that crops up, but Kristen has been devouring her normal news and current affairs diet for the last few months in preparation.

“I am as ready as I will ever be! I just feel so grateful to have Hugo and to be able to return to the job I love. Being a mum feels like this huge chest of content has just opened up to me because I am a parent now and I am thinking differently about things. Now I finally, truly ‘get’ the juggle. And I can’t wait to reconnect with our audience.”

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