Country Mornings with Jonathan & Ayla


Ayla Brown: My Last ‘Goodbye’ Before Maternity Leave!

It's weird to say "goodbye" before maternity leave. My due date is approaching so quickly, and any second my baby could pop right out! This is why I want to take this opportunity to tell you a personal story. When I was on maternity leave with my first son in 2022, I got a call from my management at Country 102.5 saying that they were making some layoffs. One of the people that they let go was my morning show co-worker, Jonathan Wier. I was devastated. (See my Facebook post below). When I returned from my 12-week maternity leave on Oct 26, 2023, I learned that I was hosting the morning show by myself. By myself? A flood of emotions ran through my head. I was honored at the opportunity to be one of the new female radio hosts in Boston. I was excited to come up with segments and challenging myself. And I was thankful that I was still able to work with one of the greatest producers in the industry, Jim Clerkin (aka "Work Daddy Jim"). But on the other hand, I was nervous about being alone. I missed Jonathan and I really missed the morning banter that we had together while we were on air. I was a solo host of "Country Mornings with Ayla Brown," for almost a full year. And let me reiterate, I was incredibly grateful for the opportunity. I grew so much over the year of being on air by myself! But then reality set in when I took a pregnancy test... I Found Out I Was Pregnant Again In August of 2023, my husband and I learned that we were expecting again! And while we were thrilled by the news, I couldn't help but think, "How the heck am I going to tell work about this? I am the solo host, so what will they do?" I couldn't get the thought out of my head. It was like a pressure cooker of emotions because I didn't want to tell my employers that I was expecting again. I was scared. Would my job be safe? Will they replace me with someone? Will the name of the show change?, and if so, to what? It must have been fate because in October, just two months after I found out that I was pregnant, my management called me into the office. They sat me down and told me that I was doing a great job hosting by myself, and that they were proud of me. Then they said, "We are in the process of bringing Jonathan Wier back on air with you." This photo was from when Garth Brooks did his "Dive Bar" Tour at Six String Grill and Stage. We certainly dressed for the occasion! Jonathan Was Coming Back! I could not believe my ears. Jonathan was coming back to Country 102.5! Were the radio Gods listening to my prayers? Not only was I relieved to know that such a great host was coming back with me, but I was also relieved that I could now tell my bosses about my pregnancy. A few weeks later, after I had my first ultra sound with the doctors and confirm that there was actually baby in there, I told my management about the pregnancy. I Will Miss You While On Maternity Leave Being a woman is the greatest superpower in the world. That's something I've learned since giving birth to my first son, Barrett. Being a mother is the greatest title anyone could ever have, and I will never take it for granted. Being a Mother is the great title in the world! This is my son and I on Mother's Day. Pretty soon, he will be a big brother! But let's be honest. Being a woman can also be overwhelming. Because being a working mother in a professional world is all about finding balance between work life and family life. It's about putting food on the table and money in the account to pay for that food. Even when you're exhausted you still make it your #1 priority to make the time for your family. And now adding another child seems like such a big life move, which it is! I will miss you all so much while I go on maternity leave. Our listeners really are the backbone of our station. Without you, we can't do our jobs, and truthfully, our job would be meaningless! I will miss Jonathan and Jim while I'm out. It's natural for me to want to say, "I won't miss waking up early!" But who am I kidding? I'll be up every two hours for a feeding!! I will be more tired on maternity leave than I would be working the morning shift on a radio station. I will see you in 12 weeks. So long, farewell, and I will see you on the other side in August!

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