PHILADELPHIA (CBS) – In late August, meteorologist Katie Fehlinger gave birth to twin girls, Parker and Kaeden.
This week, she returns to Eyewitness News, but first, she gives us a peek inside parenthood, on-the-job learning and how she handled spending her first month of maternity leave in the hospital.
“We were so grateful that Parker and Kaeden arrived as healthy as possible. However, they were a month early (late preterm) so they had some developmental catching up to do in order to be discharged from the hospital. That meant they had to spend some quality time in the Neonatal Intensive Care Unit. It was definitely a challenge spending the first month of my maternity leave making daily visits to the hospital, but the girls were in such good hands. Their NICU nurses became part of our family!”
Nowadays, Katie says the girls are doing great.
“It’s been amazing to watch them grow and hit those little milestones. We’ve LOVED celebrating all their firsts with them – babies’ first Halloween, babies’ first trip into to the big city of Philadelphia, and of course their first smiles and seeing them lift their heads. They’ve both managed to roll over on their own already which was so fun to see!”
With two new bundles of joy, Katie says she and her husband Steve are both still feeling the effects of sleep deprivation, something most parents can relate to.
“We’re still doing the zombie shuffle at night, but it’s all been so worth it. I’m definitely looking forward to getting back into the routine at work, though I’d be lying if I said I was completely ready. I’m sure every new mom can appreciate wanting to spend as much time with their little ones as possible.”
Before going on maternity leave, Katie’s Facebook post taking on “the haters” who scrutinized her pregnancy went viral, garnering tens of thousands of likes and more than 7,000 shares.
“It was very touching to receive so much positive support following that post. I loved hearing from moms (and dads!) of multiples and singletons. They lent boatloads of sound advice. ‘Cherish every second, it goes by fast!’ ‘Get the twins on a schedule!’ ‘Sleep when they sleep!’ ‘If someone offers help, take it!’ ‘Cut yourself some slack. No one’s perfect!’ They were all right.”
As for returning to television, she says, “In truth, I’ve been so immersed in caring for our little bundles, I (thankfully!) haven’t had time to be anxious about coming back into the public eye. However, I won’t be surprised if there’s added scrutiny on my appearance. That said, so many of our viewers have reached out on social media with kind messages welcoming me back and supporting me no matter what. I hope they know how much that means to me. It’s going to make what could have been a scary transition so much more seamless.”
Though she hasn’t been on the air in a few months, Katie’s been keeping up with weather events and her coworkers.
“I’ve been watching and listening to my friends and colleagues on TV and radio, and I truly miss them…I missed out on a few heavy rain events, plus Joaquin barreling up the east coast. But overall, we were able to enjoy some great weather the last few months.”
While on maternity leave, Katie says, “I had this pipe dream that I’d be able to finally tackle organizing our pantry, that absolutely DIDN’T happen! Ha! I did watch a lot of TV since I had to camp out on the couch so often for feedings. “The Late Show with Stephen Colbert” started while I’ve been out, and my husband and I are addicted to it. We’re also loving “Life in Pieces” since one of the story lines so closely (and somewhat eerily) mimics our own experience as new parents!”
As for her husband, she says he is handling fatherhood “like a rockstar.”
“Steve is, in a word, AWESOME. Through our pregnancy and now into fatherhood, he’s always jumped right in to help with everything, and been a rockstar doing it! We make a really great team.”
Katie returns to CBS3 Eyewitness News Wednesday, November 18th at 4:30 a.m.