“There aren’t enough words to describe how grateful I am to be a mommy.”

Q&A with Jenny Matthews

I can’t tell you how honored I feel that I got to do today’s Working Mom Wednesday interview with Mix 93.3’s sweetheart, Jenny Matthews!

I ba rely know Jenny in real life {I met her in passing a few times years ago during my KC Weddings, SPACES and Ink magazine stint}. Yet, thanks to her bubbly and open personality on her radio show and as the occasional event emcee around town, it’s hard not to consider her a friend.

This is exactly what makes Jenny so popular with her fans. She shares her experiences with her listeners and then takes the time to get to know them, too.

Between our own shared stories of loss and her kick-butt dream job, I knew I wanted to dig a little deeper into Jenny’s working mom lifestyle.

You hardly need an intro in my book, but let’s start with some self-promo. What do you do?

I’m a wife and a mama of two. I’m also a radio personality at Mix 93.3, Monday – Friday 10am – 3pm!

What’s your all time favorite song?

This is hard because I have so many favorite songs. But, if I had to pick just one… only one… I would sayyyyy… oh gosh, this is tough… Where the Streets Have No Name by U2.

If radio wasn’t your gig, what do you think you’d be doing?

I feel incredibly lucky to be able to say that music/radio is my passion and going to work every day isn’t really like a “job.” It’s fun and it’s what I’ve always wanted to do! That said, I do have a secret dream job. I want to be the reporter outside of the courthouse for huge trials! I’m a trial junkie. I think I was a detective in a former life. Ha!

What is a typical day like for you?

Is my husband at home or traveling for his job? He travels a lot. On those days, I am running around like a crazy person from the minute my eyes open until the minute I lay down at night! When he’s home, it’s definitely a little easier. I am thankful he’s a hands-on-daddy.

My OCD comes in handy sometimes. I get as much done the night before as humanly possible so mornings are a little less hectic. But, even with that – mornings are always rushed and we are always at least 10 minutes behind schedule no matter how hard we try! Drop the kids at school, head to work to prep and catch up on all of the latest news and celebrity gossip, on-the-air until 3, rush to school to pick up the kids, run errands, dinner, prep everything for the next day, play with the kids, clean up, read to them – my favorite part of the day {I hope they always share my love of books}, put ‘em to bed and on a good day, head downstairs to our gym to workout.

Tell me about a time you messed up at work.

Oh, I mess up all of the time. Kinda stinks messing up on live radio because there is no erase button. It’s out there. No going back. I’ve really learned to not be hard on myself – just forget it, move forward and make sure the next thing out of my mouth is 100% better.

How has your professional life changed since having kids?

Having kids changed not only my professional life, but just about every other aspect of my life as well! You know what? I wouldn’t change a thing. I have cut way back on emceeing and appearances outside of my show. I just have to be a little more selective now because we are deep in the “birthday party circuit,” busy with kids’ activities and school functions. I am so, so super duper thankful for my work hours. I’m on the air the exact hours my kids are at school. I feel like I get to do it all and I never take that for granted.

You have several side gigs. How do you prioritize?

My family comes first. The rest manages to balance itself. I’ve gotten better at saying “no.” It took me a long time to stop being a people-pleaser. Once I started doing that? My life changed for the better!

You are so involved in the community. Do any organizations you support stand out as a favorite?

Kansas City Infertility Awareness Foundation is SO close to my heart. I was a board member for a while. Unfortunately, I had to give that up because my plate was overflowing and something had to give. I still emcee their events and will forever promote them because the work they are doing in Kansas City is awesome and needed.

You’ve always been very open about your own fertility struggles. How come?

My daughter, Julianne Faith {5} and my son, Miles Parker {3} are not only my biggest blessings, they are absolute miracles. My husband, Matthew, and I went through an extremely difficult three-year fertility struggle. I had six miscarriages {two of which were life-threatening ectopic pregnancies}. I put my body through just about every fertility procedure imaginable, many of which failed. Ultimately, it was our 2nd and 3rd rounds of IVF which were successful and gave us our precious babies.

There aren’t enough words to describe how grateful I am to be a mommy. It is even better than I imagined in those dark days of infertility. It was such a lonely road and at the time I was going through it, no one talked about it. I am a believer that we should use our struggles for the greater good. I started talking about it on the radio, social media and in my HerLife Magazine monthly article. I was blown away by the response. So many women are struggling with infertility. Too many. I knew that I had a voice in the community and it became so clear to me that I was supposed to use it for this purpose.

To this day, I chat with listeners on the phone, email, Facebook – “counseling,” supporting and cheering them on as they desperately try to have a child. I’ve been there. I get it. Sometimes that’s all someone needs – to know they’re not alone.

They say it takes a village. Who else helps you with your kiddos?

When they were babies, we had a nanny come to our house every day while we were at work. Now, they go to an incredible school with the most amazing teachers! In the summer, a nanny helps us out. Outside of work, my husband and I don’t want to miss a moment with the kids, so we are guilty of not having as many date nights as we should and we rarely travel without them. We figure we’ll have lots of time for that when they get older and don’t think we’re as cool as they do now. Ha!

Has there ever been a mom-moment you’ve missed that you regretted due to work?

I keep using the word “grateful,” but that’s how I feel about my boss. He has kids. He gets it. And, he knows the journey we walked to have our kids. He knows it would break my heart six different ways if I had to miss a school program, class party or field trip. So, typically, I get to go to almost all of those things!

What do you hope your children take away from you working?

I think it’s important for my kids to see me still being “me.” They know that they come first. They know that they are the best part of every day for me. I literally tell them that on a daily basis. But, I think it’s cool that during our time apart every day, they are establishing a little world of their own. They are independent. They are social. I think we all appreciate each other more because of it. I also want them to be proud of their mom someday. That maybe she made a difference in their community.

What do you do to relax?

Relax… remind me again what that means?! I don’t have nearly enough down time and my mom reminds me of that during every catch up session. She’s right. But, again, I know someday I will long for all of this chaos!

Working out and cleaning are actually incredibly therapeutic for me! I love to read. My favorite way to chill is to sit outside on a warm day and just immerse myself into a great book.

What’s your best piece of advice for other working moms?

Don’t let anyone make you feel guilty for it. You are either working because you need to or because you want to. Either one is ok. I’m actually open to any advice anyone might have for me as a working mom. Bring it on, because I’m winging it!

Too funny you mention that, because I just wrote about winging it last week! I’m on a quest to having it all. Do you think you have it all?

I’m almost scared to say that I think I have “it all” because I’m an anxious and superstitious person! But, yeah, I can honestly tell you that at this very moment, I do feel like I have it all. My family is in good health, we have food on our table and I’m doing what I love every day at work. That’s not to say life doesn’t have its challenges. But, for this moment, I can say that I’m really happy and… there’s that word again… grateful.

If you don’t already spend your midday listening to Jenny, check her out on Mix 93.3 on weekdays from 10 a.m. – 3 p.m. I highly recommend The Fit Mix with Jenny and the Synematix at 1 for a post lunch jam sesh.

Want to be interviewed for #workingmomwednesday? Contact me to find out how.

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