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[p]I am going to swim 1.5km and then run 8km in Lanzarote in October to raise money for Pregnancy Sickness Support (PSS), an amazing but small charity supporting women who experience vomiting and nausea in pregnancy. [/p][p]PSS didn’t exist during my first pregnancy when I discovered the nightmare Hyperemesis gravidarum is. I was lucky I didn’t suffer for the whole nine months and stopped being sick around 21weeks, but my mental health was really affected nevertheless. [/p][p]When I get asked today “do you have any other kids” or “do you just have the one” I usually say “He’s an only child, I was very sick with him” and always have that horrible knot in stomach. What many don’t know is that I was actually pregnant twice more; hyperemesis hit me harder each time and the combinations of having to fight an ill-equipped NHS for rehydration and admission to hospital, dealing with my existing child and my rapidly declining physical and mental health ultimately forced me to make the toughest decision ever and terminate these much wanted pregnancies, in 2012 and 2013. PSS existed by then, and when they asked for past sufferers who’d terminated to answer a questionnaire I jumped at the chance to raise profile of this taboo subject. The results of the questionnaire are available below (definitely worth a read):[/p][p][url=https://www.pregnancysicknesssupport.org.uk/documents/HGbpasPSSreport_docx.pdf]https://www.pregnancysicknesssupport.org.uk/documents/HGbpasPSSreport_docx.pdf[/url][/p][p]It wasn’t until January this year that I felt ready to do something about all my feelings of guilt about the terminations and the PSS website mentioned a relatively new counselling service for HG sufferers….after 6 years I was finally ready and able to start grieving for the lost babies and to let go of this guilt that was slowly killing me. [/p][p]Without PSS I wouldn’t have been able to make peace with what happened and that’s why I’d like to challenge myself physically to fundraise for them as they’ve indirectly given me my life back:[/p][p]- 1.5km swim because Hyperemesis affects 1 in 100-150 women, and because 10% (although likely higher due to underreporting) of HG pregnancies end in terminations ☹ [/p][p]- 8km run because up to 80% of pregnant women suffer from nausea and vomiting (not just hyperemesis)[/p][p]I haven’t swam lengths since school (!!!) and running has always been a struggle so this challenge will be tough to train for and doing it like an aquathlon (so no rest between swimming and running) will be an added challenge!!! I haven’t excluded maybe adding a short bike ride to make it more like a triathlon but that will be finalised closer to the date….watch this space 😊 [/p][p]I would therefore really appreciate any donations as this charity is doing so much amazing work behind the scenes improving the care for pregnant women in the UK, and already the care available now is much much better than 6 years ago. [/p][p] [/p][p]Thank you [/p]
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