A young father is in training to run the London Marathon next week, raising vital funds for miscarriage charity Tommy’s.
And his wife Lauren and daughter Darcey will be there to cheer him on.
Following a race night in Carluke on Saturday, Christopher Crilley has already raised over £4000 for the national charity which funds research into stillbirth, miscarriage, and premature births.
Lauren (McCall), 31, from Carluke, and Chris, 33, from Wishaw met as children at a running club, and running has always played a big part in their lives.
At the beginning of 2016 they were thrilled to be expecting their first child. But on Valentine’s Day all their dreams for the future were taken away when they suffered the heartbreaking loss of their baby.
“There was no explanation, no medical reasoning and no solace from being told, this ‘happens to lots of people’ and ‘it’s just one of things’” said Chris.
In 2017 their daughter Darcey was born - but that too was a fraught time.
Lauren had been well throughout the pregnancy, but a routine check revealed that she had the life-threatening condition pre-eclampsia. She was rushed to Wishaw General, where little Darcey was delivered by emergency caesarean section. She was six weeks early and her first days were spent on a ventilator in the neonatal unit.
Lauren’s first sight of her daughter was of a tiny baby hidden under breathing apparatus and tubes. “I have no glowing post birth bedside photos,” she said. “I didn’t get to hold her for another two days.”
But they know how fortunate they are. With the best of care, Darcey was soon breathing on her own and is now a healthy child.
But big questions remain, and Chris was surprised at the lack of answers. He offered to run for Tommy’s, which is working to ensure that every parent can have the best possible pregnancy outcome and take home healthy babies. At present one in four women loses a baby during pregnancy and birth, a figure the charity describes as unacceptable.
On April 22 Chris will tackle the gruelling London route in the hope that his fundraising will help ensure that fewer couples in the future will face the heartache and fear that he and Lauren felt.
Donations can still be made online at Chris’s Virgin Money giving page: https://uk.virginmoneygiving.com/ChrisVLM2018