A couple from Sheffield are taking on a cycling challenge to raise money for a miscarriage charity after suffering the heartbreak of losing two babies.
Emily and Mark Ansell, from Crookes, are taking on the RideLondon challenge on July 31, with Emily tackling the 46-mile course and Mark embarking on the 100-mile version.
They are raising funds for Tommy’s, the miscarriage charity, and have already collected over £1,500 in donations.
Emily, who is aged 30, said: “Over the past year I’ve unfortunately had two miscarriages. With both of them I only found out I’d miscarried when I went for scans - the first at 12 weeks and the second at 10 and a half, and with both I had to have surgery.
“It’s been a very difficult and often lonely time for us both. When you’ve not experienced miscarriage it’s easy to think, ‘well at least it happened early’ or to question how attached you can really feel after only 12 weeks. But the truth is it’s completely heartbreaking.
“It’s impossible to stop your thoughts racing to the future, even in those few short weeks - imagining life as a family, names, nursery colours, exhausting but rewarding sleepless nights. It’s devastating when your dreams are horribly cut short by the words ‘I’m so sorry, but I’m afraid there’s no heartbeat’.”
The NHS only offer tests to understand the cause after three miscarriages, but Emily has been able to have tests through Tommy’s.
She said: “I have discovered that I have an overactive immune system which is likely to be the cause of my miscarriages.
“This test isn’t available on the NHS at the moment, so without Tommy’s research I wouldn’t have this information and a treatment plan that at least gives me the hope of having a healthy baby, rather than having to wait for what feels like the inevitable to happen again.
“Tommy’s is a huge source of support and hope to many women and couples in our position.”
n To donate, visit Mark and Emily’s fundraising page