Not By Accident

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A SocietyCulture and Personal Journals podcast featuring Sophie Harper
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Can you imagine becoming a single mother by choice, not by accident? I’ve been chronicling my own journey for six years to tell this story, about making choices and taking action to live the life you want. If you’re a parent, want to be a parent, or just love good storytelling, this podcast is for you.

Recent Episodes

Ep 34: Springtime
Ep 34: Springtime
We have a great start to 2018. Fireworks on New Year’s Eve. You and me, and thousands of Canberrans by the lake on a perfect summer’s evening. Life is in control. I have a grant to write a book, Wondery wants the podcast to continue, advertisers are keen, listeners seem keen. I thought I was just about done, but all this has me feeling optimistic. You’re reaching new levels of autonomy, independence, with thoughts, interests and a whole world opening up that has nothing to do with me. You challenge me, you question me, sometimes you know things I don’t know. You have a point of view. You always did in a way, but somehow this is new.  Childcare and preschool have prepared you (and me) for Kindergarten. You’re ready. For now, school is exactly where you want to be.I’m at crossroads again. I’ve been heading for it for a while. I need to make a change. I need to finish writing the book. I’ve said most of what I wanted to say in our podcast. I’ve spent almost three years making 34 episodes, it’s almost 16 hours. Our lives as stories, for me, for our family, for all people who chose to listen, but most of all for you. It’s yours Astrid, forever, with all my love. You’re an autonomous person now. It’s time to let you be the custodian of your own story. This is the end of season two. It is time to stop. I predict one or two stray episodes in the future when there’s something worth saying, but more or less, this is it. There won’t be a season three.If this was fiction, we’d have a big ending. Something life-changing. But this isn’t fiction. This isn’t the future. This is real life. This is now.Instead I’ll end with something I can control. This occasion deserves a party!This production is made by me, Sophie Harper, in partnership with Wondery. We’re supported by generous listeners. Story editing by Michelle Webster.Thank you family and friends for letting me share your stories and for all your support. Music from freemusicarchive.org - CC NC License: Charge Into 2015, The Time To Run andThe Stars Are Out (Interlude) by Dexter Britain, Tam8+ei4 by LJ Kruzer and Spellbound by Broke For Free. Ad music from freemusicarchive.org - CC Commercial License: Drop of Water in the Ocean by Broke For Free. Go to www.notbyaccident.net to find out more about the series, to get in touch and join the e-newsletter to hear what we’re up to.I will miss all you listeners. Some have become real world friends, and many more feel like friends to me. I have been so deeply touched my your emails, reviews, voice messages and by your donations. I truely will treasure your words for the rest of my life. I think we both will. And you can know we’re both here, figuring things out, adapting our priorities, sometimes struggling, sometimes succeeding, just living life. Don’t worry, we’re still here in real life. If you’d like to send a one-off donation, go to www.paypal.me/notbyaccident. Thank you so much you amazing people who have supported us on Patreon! Julie Greb, Margaret P. Jones, Trish Perlen, Angela Kim, Emma Burbank, Ellie McHale, Russell Kerrison, Julie Greenhalgh, Rebecca Reid, Kasey Tomkins, Dianne Firth, Anne Staude, Sarah E. Leslie, Adam Coulson, Melanie Ann, Lea Durie, Laura Getson, Bill, Sue Giugni, Maia Bittner, Elizabeth Adcock, Megan O’Brien, Katie Wolgamot, Hannah Lownsbrough, Lilit Asiryan, Laura Madge, Laura Cherry, Bethany White, Paul S Mitchell, Mariele Thadani, Pip Muir, Cynthia Madia and more.Sponsored by Hello Fresh: US listeners, For a total of $60 off, that’s $20 off your first 3 boxes, visit hellofresh.com/accident60 and enter accident60.Thank you so much for listening.
Ep 33: Enough
Ep 33: Enough
I never thought it was ideal being a two person family. There’s not somebody obvious for you to turn to when I let you down. It’s a lot of pressure, for both of us, forever I suppose. If I keep being single as I age and you grow up, I’m afraid you’ll feel responsible for me. That you have to put off things in your own life to be here for me. I want you to do what you want to do, to live in another city, or country, to make choices for you, to have an interesting life. I don’t want you to be burdened or worried or responsible for me. But because I’m an older mother, a geriatric mother, a single mother, and because you’re my only child, I’m afraid you will. I thought maybe I’d have another baby. I thought I’d reserve some samples from your donor so you’d be full biological siblings. I intended to reserve some. It never even occurred to me to freeze my eggs to buy more time. Life was more expensive. I never had money to spare. It was always in the back of my mind, the reservation. I could have prioritised it. I’m sure I could have. But I didn’t.Sometimes decisions are taken out of your hands. You apply for something and others make the decision on whether you can have it. You aspire to something, work towards it, but lack of money or time, or health, or privilege, or luck keep it out of reach. Sometimes you just don’t quite make a decision, and realise one day that you no longer have a choice. This production is made by Sophie and Astrid Harper, in partnership with Wondery. We’re supported by generous listeners. Story editing by Michelle Webster.Thank you family and friends for letting me share your stories. Extra thanks for letting me record, Adelin, Caroline, Lauren, and of course Astrid. Music from freemusicarchive.org - CC NC License: One And and Spellbound by Broke For Free. By permission from the artist: You, You’ll be Waiting by Baby Blue. Ad music from freemusicarchive.org - CC Commercial License: Drop of Water in the Ocean by Broke For Free.Thank you so much you amazing people who support us on Patreon! Julie Greb, Margaret P. Jones, Trish Perlen, Angela Kim, Emma Burbank, Ellie McHale, Russell Kerrison, Julie Greenhalgh, Rebecca Reid, Kasey Tomkins, Dianne Firth, Anne Staude, Sarah E. Leslie, Adam Coulson, Melanie Ann, Lea Durie, Laura Getson, Bill, Sue Giugni, Maia Bittner, Elizabeth Adcock, Megan O’Brien, Katie Wolgamot, Hannah Lownsbrough, Lilit Asiryan, Laura Madge, Laura Cherry, Bethany White, Paul S Mitchell, Mariele Thadani, Pip Muir, Cynthia Madia and more.If you’d like to send a one-off donation, go to www.paypal.me/notbyaccident.  Go to www.notbyaccident.net to find out more about the series, join the e-newsletter or to get in touch.Sponsored by Hello Fresh: US listeners, For a total of $60 off, that’s $20 off your first 3 boxes, visit hellofresh.com/accident60 and enter accident60.We’ll be back with the next instalment, the end of season two, in about 4 weeks.
Ep 32: And the World is!
Ep 32: And the World is!
We’re watching Mimi’s bridal waltz, lit by the sunset’s golden glow in a retro-opulent ballroom, filled with love. I have a huge lump in my throat. I can’t quite believe we’re here, for this moment, for Michael and Antonia, young lovers who lost touch for years, then found each other again, and somehow found themselves. They seem as filled with joy as it’s possible to be. And I am too, as I look around the table at our closest friends from Denmark who we left a year ago, reunited, as if geography is nothing and the bonds of friendship are everything. I glance out at golden Manhattan across the East River, as I squeeze you on my lap, my little companion, and my depletion is filled up. By this city, this adventure, these people, this wedding, by all this love and by you.There have been obstacles getting here. I needed help with the money. And travel with a kid is hard. I haven’t been able to control everything. Sleep is a battle, with jet lag and adrenalin pushing us further and further out of sync. But amongst logistical headaches, so many moments have been magical, since we left Canberra on last week’s pre-dawn flight. This production is made by Sophie and Astrid Harper, in partnership with Wondery. We’re supported by generous listeners. Dear patreon supporters, I can’t tell you how much I appreciate the ongoing support. Story editing by Michelle Webster.Thanks to Michael and Antonia, Steen, Ana, Jim, Anne and the boys, to my biggest nephew Sebastian, and especially to you Astrid, for letting me share your stories. Music from the wedding (invoking Fair Use) That’s Amore by Dean Martin, New York New York by Frank Sinatra, Ave Maria by Bach/Gounod, Get Ready by The Temptations, You Send Me by Sam Cooke, Unchained Melody by The Righteous Brothers and Girls Just Wanna Have Fun by Cyndi Lauper. Ad music from freemusicarchive.org - CC Commercial License: Drop of Water in the Ocean by Broke For Free.Sponsored by Hello Fresh: US listeners, for $30 off your first week of HelloFresh, visit hellofresh.com/accident30 and enter code ACCIDENT30 Thank you kind people supporting us on Patreon! Margaret P. Jones, Trish Perlen, Angela Kim, Emma Burbank, Ellie McHale, Russell Kerrison, Julie Greenhalgh, Rebecca Reid, Kasey Tomkins, Dianne Firth, Anne Staude, Sarah E. Leslie, Adam Coulson, Melanie Ann, Lea Durie, Laura Getson, Bill, Sue Giugni, Maia Bittner, Elizabeth Adcock, Megan O’Brien, Katie Wolgamot, Hannah Lownsbrough, Lilit Asiryan, Laura Madge, Laura Cherry, Bethany White, Paul S Mitchell, Mariele Thadani, Pip Muir and more.If you’d like to chip in a couple of dollars towards each new episode, go to patreon.com/notbyaccident.  Go to www.notbyaccident.net to find out more about the series, join the e-newsletter or to get in touch. We’ll be back with the next instalment in about 4 weeks.

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Podcast Details
Started
Mar 22nd, 2016
Latest Episode
Sep 27th, 2018
Release Period
Weekly
No. of Episodes
46
Avg. Episode Length
24 minutes

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