I'm running to thank the Tommy's midwives

Charmaine Malcolm is running the Royal Parks Half Marathon for Tommy’s on Sunday to say thank you to the midwives who staff the Tommy’s PregnancyLine. The team have given Charmaine emotional support through her recurrent miscarriages and medical advice that helped her to go on to have baby Emanuela, who’ll be two in November.

By Charmaine Malcolm

I remember I was overseas when I called the PregnancyLine. I was extremely tearful and unapologetic for how I was feeling. As far as I was concerned, I was the only person experiencing this pain and no one else could understand it.

The midwives took my details. I explained my symptoms and history and they told me that I was miscarrying for the third time. Nothing can prepare you for a miscarriage. Nothing can prepare you for the emotions that you have, and hard as it was, I listened to the advice they gave.

They told me I was miscarrying for the third time

The midwife said that the miscarriage was not my fault. It is not easy to accept this, especially when you've had multiple miscarriages but the calm words of the midwife gave me reassurance and the space to help me through the thoughts and feelings I was having. Her warmth allowed me to regulate my emotions when anger, frustration, fear and anxiety were all circulating at the same time. She put me at ease and was there to help me understand my body and regain control of it.

She helped me to remember the highlights of my pregnancy. The memories of bonding with my baby, though short, are precious. I had rung the Tommy's midwives before, in my last pregnancy after my baby’s heartbeat had stopped. The midwife asked me if I had a scan photo as a memory. I thought it was bizarre, but I went back to the hospital and asked for it and it is now one of my most prized possessions.

I felt empowered with the knowledge the midwives gave me

Then came the advice on what to do next. Anyone who knows me knows that I love a plan, and she must have realised that. I recognised that I was working too hard; that I needed to take that time away from work, and when I became pregnant again, put my baby first.

I also talked to the medical team with the knowledge given to me by the Tommy’s midwives. I was able to confidently discuss the policy of having to experience three miscarriages before investigations into your health are even considered; note the highlighted words. I felt so empowered that when I spoke I thought I was a medical expert.

The midwives were there for me in my successful pregnancy too, when I was experiencing serious discomfort. Their help has been invaluable and that's why I'm running for Tommy's - to support them in keeping this great service open for other women going through similar experiences.

To sponsor Charmaine visit http://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/CharmaineMalcolm

To support Tommy's miscarriage research centre, click here.