Updates

Our progress towards raising our 2m target

George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
We couldn't have been luckier with the weather today having taken foreeeeever to leave the house risking being caught out in the rain predicted for later in the day! ...anyone else have almighty faff from each family member before you're finally able to mobilise the troops to go out?! (To be fair we tried getting the boys to do their homework before we jumped in the car to head to Brighton and, if I'm being completely honest, I'm normally the biggest culprit! 😂) Despite knowing the weather was set to turn there later this afternoon we didn't manage to arrive until well after lunch in the end, cue a random but tasty food platter at home!

It may have been windy as hell but we all loved every minute whether it be on the blustery beach or playing crazy golf at the Jungle Rumble Adventure Golf & Cafe Brighton. As creatures of habit we always seem to have quite a formulaic pattern of what we do when we're there but today we managed to also squeeze some shopping in with us picking up some sale bargains and little gems from an otherwise desolate Debenhams.

Either way today was very much a therapeutic day for all four of us what with some retail therapy and simply taking in all that sea air. We even each chose a stone that we'll go on to decorate by way of commemorating the loss of our little girl. Something we wanted to do as well as buy a plant following all the brilliant suggestions from you. (I don't think you're supposed to take stones away from the beach but who knows, we may even end up painting them and putting them back there again being that it's one of our favourite places to be).

It was then just as we stepped back into the car the heavens completely opened up - we honestly couldn't believe our luck! Here's hoping you've had a good bank holiday weekend too. Now to get our heads into gear ready for work and school.

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2021 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or to help with any event you may be thinking of email Lydia.Clark2@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com Alternatively write to us at The Giant Pledge, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fundraising Room, Downs Rd, Sutton, SM2 5PT
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Today we all had a truly lovely day. It started with the kids piling into our bed full of beans attacking us with their freezing cold feet having already been downstairs in their dressing gowns and PJ's watching TV and playing on devices while Woody and I had a much needed lie in. It wasn't long after that Woody went to work but at least he made it home in time for dinner where we had a tasty Sunday roast for the four of us together 👌 (I won't even mention Line of Duty as I'm not entirely sure what happened there other than wanting to say meh! 🤷🏼)

After dropping Alex off at rugby practice George and I went for some cheeky treats and drinks at The Barn at Sollo in the heart of Reigate. Hear I snuck in lots of cuddles as it was far colder than either of us had imagined so he ended up sitting on my lap keeping us both warm and making it a lovely time spent just the two of us 🥰 Once we'd picked Alex back up we had a quick bite to eat then headed over to see the other of my two sisters that we haven't seen in ages thanks to all things covid.

It really has been so good to talk to all my friends and family about everything that's recently happened to us these last few months. On top of that you guys have been an absolutely massive help as well as a central part to so many of our coping strategies. Just take your responses to yesterday's post ...yet another example of just how brilliantly amazing you are. Not only have you been brave in sharing your own very personal stories about baby loss but you've also helped more than you could ever imagine in sharing your coping strategies with us...how had we not yet thought of planting something that will flower every spring, what a genius idea, thank you so much! ❣️

In fact did you know the first Sunday in May is #internationalbereavedmothersday The brilliant team behind the Make September Gold - Childhood Cancer Awareness page put it so well in their message they shared earlier today, "Thinking of and sending our love to every mother who holds their child close in their heart rather than their arms" ❤️ We second that whether it be a child you've raised and nurtured or one you never got to properly meet. We've sadly got far too many friends that fall into one or both of either of those categories 😞

So for us today we squeezed every inch of joy out of the lovely moments we had throughout the day. From this morning's cold feet to this evening's yummy dinner together, as well as the kids funny five minutes laughing hysterically in some sort of giddy meltdown at my mum and dads where we also nipped into today as we happened to be over their way. So thank you to them as well as all of you 🤗 We may not have had the energy or time to respond to each of your thoughtful and caring messages but we read them all and want to share the love right back at you all.

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2021 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or to help with any event you may be thinking of email Lydia.Clark2@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com Alternatively write to us at The Giant Pledge, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fundraising Room, Downs Rd, Sutton, SM2 5PT
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Tonight I'm a bit stumped to know where to begin and how to explain our day when it comes to writing today's daily diary entry. On one hand it's hard to believe it was only at this point a week ago I was coming out of recovery having just had our missed miscarrige surgically removed as in so many ways it feels like it was just yesterday.

On the other hand today we all enjoyed time with friends indulging in the things the boys love including football, play and lots of tasty food making for a lovely start to our bank holiday weekend even if George exhausted himself in the process! We were all genuinely happy but with an underlying sadness that would leap out and catch each of us by surprise when we were least expecting it.

We laughed, we cried and enjoyed the company of friends but were as fickle as today's pouring rain and lovely sunshine! I don't know how I'm going to be or how I'll react from one minute to the next and it's driving me crazy!

One thing today served as a good reminder of is that barely any time has passed and we're clearly all starting to go through the motions of grieving the life as a family of five we'd all dreamt of. However, as pointed out by my psychologist earlier this week, this chapter in our lives had an end vs the ongoing relationship with Alex's epilepsy and George's cancer what with their continued tests, scans and threats of their conditions hanging over us so this in itself could help us in finding some sort of closure.

To that point conversations have now switched to how we can mark our loss / this moment in time and what we might do to help all of us move on. Equally we agreed that part of being kinder to ourselves includes acknowledging that this may take some time to process.

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2021 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or to help with any event you may be thinking of email Lydia.Clark2@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com Alternatively write to us at The Giant Pledge, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fundraising Room, Downs Rd, Sutton, SM2 5PT
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
Here you can see the face of two boys that only just realised today was the start of the first May bank holiday long weekend! 🎊 In all honesty I'd also forgotten, Woody on the other hand planned a long cycle with some friends to kick things off in style by riding to and spending the afternoon in Brighton!

Whenever we've faced any of our challenges or traumas we've each tackled things in our own unique way. For me talking about things, much like I did on a walk with mum's from school ahead of joining some work calls this morning, always helps get my head into some sort of order. That or writing my thoughts and feelings down as I do every night on here. For Woody it's always been exercise and almost the opposite to me in that he'd rather talk about sport and keep his feelings tucked up inside him. Neither is right or wrong, I'm just glad he got out and blew the cobwebs off as our recent baby loss has hit all of us hard so we each need to get through this in our own way as well as together as a family.

As for the boys it was Tennis squads this evening after school although we've not signed George up just yet he still spent time hitting a ball about while Alex loved playing even if it was raining. This was then followed by a takeaway from Eighty ATE Burger for the first time I've ever been there 🤤

After a massively scaled back day we all wanted to head off early to bed then Woody and I remembered we've got our online shop coming between 10.30 and 11.30 this evening 🤦🏼‍♀️ Either way here's to mostly catching up on sleep all weekend!

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2021 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or to help with any event you may be thinking of email Lydia.Clark2@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com Alternatively write to us at The Giant Pledge, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fundraising Room, Downs Rd, Sutton, SM2 5PT
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge
In my mind I'd organised a brilliantly productive day today taking lots of positive steps in the right direction as, having dropped the boys off at school, I'd bagged myself a last minute cancelation slot for a haircut at the salon I sometimes go to in London near where I work. I planned a full day around this as it all seemed to make so much sense... I could physically go into the office naturally creating a first step for me returning to work following last weekend's miscarriage as well as enabling me to return all the maternity clothes I bought last week but haven't yet worn as they no longer serve any purpose. (I'm still very much showing as you can see in my post haircut pic but things are thankfully very slowly starting to shrink).

Add to that the fact I had my six monthly performance review today, as well as my bi monthly psychology session, for which I knew I'd need to be in a room as it was inevitably going to be emotional, heading into the office seemed to make so much sense...that was until I completely broke down crumbling into a thousand tiny pieces at which point I realised I'd essentially trapped myself in a meeting room not knowing how to extract myself from the building as a blotchy soggy mess without being spotted 😞

In short, I massively over cooked things today. There was no pressure to do this, these were all of my own choices. I simply made a mistake of planning a day that needed far too many gear shift changes - isn't hindsight a wonderful thing 😢 Yes there were many things I thought would help make me feel better about myself or at least a bit different... the hair, returning the clothes, being in a place where I'm in control...only I'm not exactly me at the moment with such low resilience and feeling so very vulnerable. Even in my positive performance review I pretty much said nothing and just felt numb throughout the whole thing. I then had to switch gears to an hours psychology session talking about losing our baby girl while in the office, seriously, what was I thinking!

It may not have ended up being the relaxing, productive 'first steps in the right direction' day I was after but at least I have the silver lining of sporting a new haircut which was very much needed with my last cut being in August! In fact talking of silver one thing's for sure, today certainly added to the greys so the next job on the list is getting my hair coloured only I'll wait as long as it takes to go to our favourite local hairdresser for this!

Finally, to my oncology friend who shared this image which reminded me that 'just because you're struggling doesn't mean you're failing', you couldn't have posted it at a better time for me so thank you so very much ❤️

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2021 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or to help with any event you may be thinking of email Lydia.Clark2@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com Alternatively write to us at The Giant Pledge, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fundraising Room, Downs Rd, Sutton, SM2 5PT
George and the Giant Pledge
George and the Giant Pledge is with Zoe Clark-Coates and I draw childhood cancer.
The first half of today ended up being a duvet day. Since finding out our baby had Edwards Syndrome, followed by our subsequent early pregnancy miscarrige, my bad sleep habits have leapt right back in 😩 Rather than do the school run I stayed in bed leaving Woody to it with me ending up sleeping until almost noon today ...clearly my body needed it!

As you can tell I'm not back at work just yet but that'll be my next goal even if it's taking baby steps, no pun intended. At this moment in time I think you can safely say we're all still in shock let alone having started to process all the miscarriage and pregnancy physical and mental leftovers (The DVT postoperative compression socks being the most palatable of these so I couldn't resist posting a picture of them) In fact it was precisely a week ago today our latest nightmare started to unfold with the results of our genetic testing, which we only did due to Alex's epilepsy and George's cancer diagnosis, revealing the pregnancy of our little girl wasn't in fact viable 😞

Something that helped me kick start this process was reading a book called 'Saying Goodbye' written by Zoe Clark-Coates as our friend, who lost her daughter Elea to childhood cancer at just 20 months old, kindly bought it for us and it arrived today. As it says in the introduction, life can be hard, it can be wonderful and it can be traumatising with this book encouraging people to be real about their baby loss stories giving time and space to reflect and heal with a 90 day support program. (You may remember us talking about Elea's Giant Pledge with their 'Just to Say' gift cards raising funds to help beat childhood cancer, https://www.etsy.com/uk/shop/BrownBearButterfly)

Despite all that sleep, a coffee was still very much needed this afternoon...it's therefore quite literally nuts to think back to the version of me that, two years ago today, ran the London Marathon! All the photos and videos from back then still fill me with so much joy as we hit The Giant Pledge million that day! With Woody's Brighton Marathon getting us so close and the interviews on ITV London and the BBC News, plus promo and donations from so many of you, all helping us to not only reach but absolutely smash our million pound mission 💪 (This interview still brings a tear to my eye, https://fb.watch/58XuVKHIJK/) Isn't it even more incredible to think that as of today our Giant Pledge collective fundraising total sits just £40k shy of 2 million pounds 🤯

Being that both Woody and I are brimming over at maximum capacity right now what with everything life has recently thrown at us we're so grateful to other Giant Pledge family funds and all our other fundraising friends continuing to fly the flag for The Giant Pledge to help beat childhood cancer 🙏 Talking of which, government restrictions and covid guidance permitting, Reigate Manor are planning on having a quiz night on Thursday the 24th of June with tables of 6 (find out more here, https://www.facebook.com/events/442036820212324) and the team at Hartsfield Manor are looking to hold a Family Fun Day in aid of The Giant Pledge on Sunday the 27th of June from 12 till 4 in the afternoon (https://www.facebook.com/events/280074320354841) ...there's also talk of an 80's party at some point too!

As we say, it's all obviously subject to government restrictions and covid rules at the time permitting but in such a bleak moment in our life it gives us something positive to look forward to so here's to all our little childhood cancer heroes on #NationalSuperHeroDay We've got your back and, no matter what, we always will ❤️

Between us we've got this.

#thebigpush
#aimhighstaypositive
#giantpledge

Donate or join the Giant Pledge team with your own fundraising event in 2021 at https://giantpledge.com/team

Buy one of our 'Tackle Childhood Cancer' tees or pick up your superhero cape in honour of the doctors, nurses and super brave cancer kids at http://giantpledge.com/shop

Sing along & share our charity 'Do a Big Poo' song, https://youtu.be/U3iOmhIIc_s or buy it here, https://giantpledge.com/buy

Follow us on Facebook: https://www.facebook.com/georgeandthegiantpledge
On Twitter: https://twitter.com/giantpledge
And on Instagram: https://instagram.com/giantpledge

Or to help with any event you may be thinking of email Lydia.Clark2@rmh.nhs.uk and cc us at GeorgeandtheGiantPledge@gmail.com Alternatively write to us at The Giant Pledge, The Royal Marsden Hospital, Fundraising Room, Downs Rd, Sutton, SM2 5PT
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