Goodbye Comfort Zone, Hello Charity
Goodbye Comfort Zone, Hello Charity
I’ve always wanted to do something to raise money for charity. Something to help others. Something completely out of my comfort zone. The problem was that I’ve never known what to do. Running? I’m a terrible runner so maybe not. At school I would do anything to avoid running and always put my hand up for shot put when it came round to sports day. But what could I do and there are so many deserving charities large and small, how on earth would I choose one?
Then at the end of 2014 a friend sent me an article which told a story of the very first baby born from a successful womb transplant in Sweden. It didn’t take much research to discover that plans are being made in the UK to offer the same procedure to 5 women in 2015. In order to make this happen and continue their important research, the medical team at Queen Charlotte’s & Chelsea Hospital, Imperial College London needed to raise £500,000 with the help of the Womb Transplant UK Charity.
It seemed to me that 5 was the magic number.
5 women… 2015… £500,000…
The charity really struck a cord with me, for reasons I may go into in more detail another time, so the decision was made. As a small charity in need of help, Womb Transplant UK would be who I would choose.
But how was I going to do my bit?
I decided to follow the theme of the number 5 and found myself booking 5 charity runs for 2015, each of a distance of 5k. This would act as 5 kilometres for each woman who would eventually be chosen for the life changing transplant. My hope was to raise £500.
Why would anyone need a womb transplant?
Sadly there are many women who have had a hysterectomy due to cancer or other illnesses and 1 in 5,000 women are born with a condition called Mayer Rokitanski Kuster Hauser Syndrome (MRKH) meaning they were born without a womb.
That means that, for one reason or another, approximately 15,000 women of child bearing age in the UK have no womb. Imagine that… never knowing the joy holding your own baby in your arms.
I had to help. The runs were booked and I roped some friends in to run with me and so training began. It was awful. I couldn’t even run for a bus so what on earth was I doing? On one training run, I cried. I ran through the pain of my calves tightening up and I cried for every woman who cannot bear their own child and would make such wonderful mothers. Thankfully I haven’t cried on a run since and a kind old gentleman who was almost shuffling past me as I performed something vaguely similar to a run even told me to keep going. So that’s what I did.
Thanks to the generosity of my friends and family who are always incredibly supportive of everything I do, I have smashed my £500 target and still have 2 more runs to do.
My first official run was emotional. My 2nd was painful. The 3rd was fun. But let me tell you this… They don’t get easier! I’m still totally, utterly and completely rubbish at running! But I’m trying and I’m doing something I never thought I would.
How will my poor excuse for running help?
With the help of kind donations, Womb Transplant UK will be one step closer to their goal of developing a safe procedure to allow women to have the family they long for. 5 women will be selected to undergo this operation and donations will help give hope to these women and women of the future. One of the greatest gifts you can give!
Here’s how the generous donations will be used,
£50 – Blood test, immunosuppressant medication & swabs
£500 – Imaging (CT/MRI/Ultrasound), fertility medication, patient travel costs if outside of London
£1,000 – Egg collection, embryo transfer, hospital stay following operation & correct surgical kit.
So if you would like to follow my progress, my next run will be the ‘Autumn Shakespeare Run’ on 14th November in Coventry.
If you have found my story interesting and would like to help, please donate whatever you can by visiting my fundraising page. It really would mean the world to so many women in the UK and one day I hope that this will be a standard procedure.
Thank you, Wendy