Guess who is back? Isibaya leading lady Jessica Nkosi reprises her role tonight as sweet, lovable heroine Queen Qondi.
The 28-year-old actress was last seen on screen in July and has been on maternity leave. She gave birth to baby girl Namisa "Nami" Dlamini, whose father is Uzalo actor Ntokozo Dlamini, in October.
Nkosi has her hands full when we connect on the phone as she is giving Nami her morning bath.
Nami sounds adorable, making whimpering sounds in the background; but Nkosi is not breaking a sweat and she's handling it all well.
"I'm only going to tell you one thing about her, she's like her dad," Nkosi shares. "She looks exactly like her dad. You see Ntokozo and then you see her. She's a daughter that looks like her dad."
Qondi makes her long-awaited comeback tonight during the Zulu traditional wedding episode on the Mzansi Magic drama. Her world seems to be falling apart almost immediately as so much has happened in the six months she was in London.
Her one true love, Fezile (Andile Mxakaza), has found new love in Cebile (Sihle Ndaba). There is a new rascal chief Dabula (Chris Q. Radebe).
"It's good to be back. I think I'm just an artist at heart, so I missed the acting and storytelling. I missed being busy," she points out. "I don't think I'm the stay-at-home type. I need to be busy and working. Babies are a lot of work; I didn't feel like I was just sitting around."
Nkosi returned on set on January 7. "For starters, they didn't even give me a break; I was in the first scene. I was thrown into the deep-end immediately," she recalls. "They picked me up at home at 5am and by 5.30am I was already on set. But I was just like, 'phew, I'm home'. I haven't seen anyone since June, so it was great to see all my colleagues."
Nkosi admits that she's still finding her balance between motherhood and career.
"Motherhood is amazing. I'm still trying to find my feet; I have never lived in Johannesburg with a child. I'm trying to find my new normal. You know, when you leave a baby at home and go to work there is a sense of guilt. I'm finding my balance."
She has been living with her family in Empangeni, KwaZulu-Natal after giving birth and received a lot of help from them. But reality came knocking when she moved back to Joburg after Christmas. "It was so difficult, so all of my mothers came back with us – Ntokozo's mom too. So basically, my entire family came and helped us move back.
"The first week was good. I didn't feel like it was just me and Nami … until everyone left and then reality sunk in. It's just the three of us and what do we do now? But we found such a lovely helper."
Nkosi is also back to making appearances at social events. This Saturday, she will be at the Sun Met horse racing event in Cape Town. "I have no idea what I'm wearing. I just called my designer and said make me something beautiful."