At the moment I regularly listen to two podcasts: Giovanna Fletcher’s ‘Happy Mum, Happy Baby’, and Alistair and Grace Campbell’s ‘Football, Feminism and Everything in Between’. Contrasting choices one might say, but then that’s the key – serve the different parts of your brain, keep those neurons firing etc.
‘Happy Mum, Happy Baby’ appeals to the part of my brain that needs parent chat, and to feel part of a community when you are spending the majority of your time alone with a child. You might have some mum and baby dates, and sporadic chat with other adults, but it’s usually when paying for something or getting on the bus. ‘I don’t need the receipt’ and ‘thank you’ is not proper chat.
Compare your life now to the one you had before, did you sit in the office whinging about being sat in the office? Remember all that chat and gossip? Popping out for lunch with a colleague, those boring meetings – wouldn’t you kill for that now? But blah blah blah, the grass is always greener…
So combat your mumliness – my new hip portmanteau of ‘mum’ and ‘loneliness’ – by listening to Gi!
Added bonus: You stop your partner from wanting to strangle you for being so hyper and needy when they get in from work.
‘Football, Feminism and Everything in Between’ is hosted by father and daughter combo Alistair and Grace Campbell. Campbell Sr is known to me from the heady days of New Labour in the late 1990s. Aged thirteen, I remember going with my Dad to the polling station in 1997 and being told that he was voting for the Lib Dems as a protest even though Labour were expected to win by a landslide (and they did).
In my mind he was always New Labour and the war in Iraq and nothing else. But then Charles Kennedy died. I loved Charles Kennedy, a wonderful and witty person who tried to do good, but then I discovered he was friends with Alistair Campbell – so he can’t be all bad right?
Campbell’s obituary discusses their friendship and the mental health issues they shared. As well as being moving and warm, it really reminded me how multifaceted we all are, and how we really should try to not judge on first impressions.
I can’t remember how or why, but four years later I started following him on Instagram, which led me to the above podcast and his comedian and feminist daughter Grace.
As with ‘Happy Mum, Happy Baby’, each episode is an hour or so chat with a celebrity or ‘known person in their field’, and both podcasts introduce you to people and/or a topic you may be unfamiliar with.
IMHO, it is always wonderful to learn, and to see things from a different perspective, and in a world of Donald and Boris, this is a key skill to keep developing.
Another podcast I must start listening to is ‘Wonder Women’ by musical theatre actresses Celinde Schoenmaker and Carrie Hope Fletcher. Topics include female hysteria and cartoon women and I’m very much looking forward to a good listen.