“Being pregnant involves a lot of stuff that has to happen on a schedule, but I had a job that involved heavy travel and a lot of covering breaking news, so everything just became a whole lot more of a juggle,” said CNN sports anchor Rachel Nichols, the mother of toddler twins. “You’re trying to eat regular meals, but you find yourself in an airport at 1 a.m. I remember once leaving a frantic message for my doctor that just said ‘I have to reschedule my appointment, Aaron Rodgers suffered another concussion.’ After I hung up, I realized I probably should have provided a little more explanation.”
“I went through that six months just trying to give her a chance at life,” said Theoharis. “I then had the realization that my dreams had not changed. Even going through all that, I still wanted to finish what was at that point 10 years of working really hard. I wanted to finish that pursuit I started out of college, and I felt I was a better mom when I had work. When I was pregnant working the baseball beat, the toughest part was the travel, being at the hot ballpark and still trying to walk around to get interviews done. Now I think the biggest challenge is fatigue because I have two small children. You are trying to do everything a stay-at-home mom would do when you are home and also trying to keep your career going, which you are still just passionate about. Also, being a studio host—and I know this might sound petty—it’s finding something that fits you and finding different camera angles. I’m standing up with 300-pound guys and you feel you weigh 400 pounds. You are standing in heels and your balance is off.”
Dylan Mattea Buchler eventually came 12 weeks early, weighing just two pounds, 10 ounces. (Theoharis said her daughter’s first diapers were about the size of one graham cracker square.) She stayed in the neonatal intensive care unit for five weeks and upon returning home, Dylan had a heart and lung monitor attached. At one news conference, Orioles manager Buck Showalter told reporters to pray for Theoharis. For six months, Theoharis stayed home with Dylan, watching her every move.
While working as the Orioles sideline reporter for the Mid-Atlantic Sports Network in late August 2010, Theoharis started feeling stomach pains when covering the team in Chicago. She was scheduled to fly with the Orioles to Anaheim after the White Sox series but after consulting with the Orioles’ trainer, she decided to fly back to Baltimore to see her doctor. That’s when she received the news: She was in preterm labor—at a way-too-early 24 weeks. The paramedics were called and she was taken to Anne Arundel Medical Center on Sept. 1. “They thought I would lose the baby because they thought she was too young to make it outside,” Theoharis said.
For women seeking advice on how to juggle a sports media career with motherhood, we direct you to NFL Network anchor #Amber Theoharis, who is due with her third child at the end of August. Two years ago Theoharis nearly gave birth to her second child, Kamryn Olivia, on the set of NFL Total Access. As for the delivery of her first child, Dylan Mattea, well, that’s a remarkable story.