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Episode 141–Downriver Nomad, my Conversation with Rob Hutchings

Episode 141–Downriver Nomad, my Conversation with Rob Hutchings


Hello, and welcome to episode 141 of the Childless not by Choice Podcast. My name is Civilla Morgan. My mission is to recognize and speak to childless not by choice women and men around the world, reminding you, us, that we can live joyful, relevant, fulfilled, childless not by choice, lives.  
Whether you have children or not, thank you for tuning in!  


What is today’s show about?

Rob Hutchings: ‘Downriver Nomad–A Triathlete’s Adventures and Adversities Into The Rapids’ 

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Intro (for guest episodes):

Rob’s intro

Triathlete and marathon swimmer, Rob Hutchings takes us on a whirlwind journey from triathlons and his first marathon swim in his home country of Canada, to Ironman competitions across the pond. Then down under to Australia and New Zealand where he embarked on marathon adventures off the beaten track, on land, and in the water, which led to his biggest challenge – an unprecedented attempt at swimming the turbulent 256 km Clutha River.

In Downriver Nomad, Rob shares his story of adventures and adversities not only in the water, on the racecourse, and off the beaten track, but also his struggles with an alcoholic father and his own unsuccessful path to fatherhood.

His is a story of humor, heartbreak, and challenges that will inspire the absolute beginner in adventure sports to the seasoned endurance athlete. Join Rob on his nomadic adventures in triathlon, marathon swimming, and adventure sports, packed with hairpin bends, whirlpools, rock dodging, and white-water rapids.

Body of episode:

Questions for Rob Hutchings: 

‘Downriver Nomad–A Triathlete’s Adventures and Adversities Into The Rapids’ 

  • I thoroughly enjoyed your book and how you were able to combine your infertility journey with your passion for triathlon. It was beautifully done.
  • Tell us a little about the Australian adoption process, and how it is the way it is due to the history of ‘The Stolen Generation.’ (Pg 167)
  • So because of the Stolen Generation issue, Thailand is suggested. The process was harrowing! Then, not to give away too much of the book, you were advised to try adopting from Colombia (pg 169…). The whole process must have been more than stressful?
  • Those unsolicited questions and suggestions. My goodness, a number of years ago I interviewed the founder of Waiting Wombs. She is out of Kenya. As I read some of the suggestions you all were given to try to have a baby, I thought back to that episode. It occurred to me that suggestions, unsolicited suggestions are global! How did you and your wife deal with this?  (Pg 147)
  • That trick question on the psych eval (pg 171). That was terrible! Every time I think about the grilling potential adoptive parents go through, I think about people who have kids naturally. They go through nothing. I’m not saying there shouldn’t be some type of process or protection of the children, but I find the process a little extreme, outside of any cultural history of abuse, as we discussed in The Stolen generation issue earlier.  How did you make sense of the grilling, of not being believed?
  • I found it interesting how you discuss in the book, that couples wait in different ways, for word on adoption, and that indeed the stress can split some couples apart. Talk to us about the stress of waiting and any tips you can give couples for keeping their relationships from falling apart.
  • I did some research on your wife’s book Joyful Eating. (Pg 179) would it be OK to put a link to the information I found in the show notes? If you have info on how we can obtain the book, I can put that in the show notes as well. 


  • You guys had me researching raw chocolate!
  • That final decision to stop the adoption process. (pg 181). I felt it deep in my heart.  Honestly, the entire book brought out so much emotion. That type of writing takes a lot of talent. Kudos to you! Before we close out, any final words you can give to anyone listening who is still trying: to adopt, to go through IVF, whatever journey they are on? 
  • Thank you so much for your time today Rob.  

Articles/links of interest:

Clutha River Swim:

Short version

Long version:

Easter 2022 Marathon Swim:

See the book synopsis and other endorsements here:

Joyful Eating by Tansy Boggon


Special thank you to:

Rob Hutchings for joining us this episode.

Quotes from Rob:

‘The river was in control, not me.’ What I like about river swimming and childlessness really made this apparent to me…the river is in charge…this is.

‘Life is a series of chaotic events.’

‘Life is inherently chaotic…’


My contact information:

Website: and
Facebook: booksbycivillamorgan
Twitter: @civilla1
Instagram: @joyandrelevance
Pinterest: Civilla M. Morgan, MSM
LinkedIn: Civilla Morgan, MSM


‘Spreading the great news that we can live a joyful, relevant, and fulfilled life.’



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