Frankie Aitchison is taking on the Bupa Great North Run challenge for her daughter, Ella, who was stillborn in September 2010.
The weekend of the Bupa Great North Run would have been Ella’s second birthday which motivated Frankie to challenge herself and raise money in her memory.
Frankie’s world caved in around her when she was told Ella, her first baby, had passed away.
Frankie said: “The moment you’re told that your baby has died is like nothing you have ever felt.
“It was like a horrible blur when everything slows down. I don’t think that moment is something we will ever forget. Everything you thought your life would be like changes in an instant and your world literally stops.
“You’re warned about all sorts of things but you’re not warned about stillbirth. It’s not talked about. I never thought it would ever happen to me.”
Frankie is taking part in the Bupa Great North Run in memory of Ella but also to raise money for Sands which is a UK charity providing support for bereaved parents and their families.
Frankie said: “Sands is very important to me as it provides vital help to families in the darkest of times.”
Tackling the world’s most iconic half-marathon is one thing – but it’s quite another to take it on after two previous days of swimming a mile and cycling 56 miles. Frankie chose to do the Great North Run with her other challenges so it will be a half Ironman Triathlon over three days.
Frankie said: “The reason for doing the challenge is mainly to honour Ella. I want to raise £2,000 as Ella would’ve been two. I can’t do birthdays or Christmas but I can raise money that will hopefully make a difference to families going through the same thing as we did.
“All baby loss, at whatever stage, is devastating and it is the support from family and friends and from organisations such as Sands that helps you begin to start slowly moving forward with your life.”
Having not done exercise for many years, the Bupa Great North Run is also going to be a personal challenge for Frankie but she has the huge support from her husband, Andy, her 11 month old son, Isaac, and the rest of her family spurring her on.
Frankie said: “Everyone has told me how great the Great North Run is and they insist that the crowd will get me through it!
“The bonus of the challenge for me is that I also get fitter and that’s important for me and for Isaac’s future.
“I’d gone from one pregnancy to another and was really unfit. I’d done no exercise in four years and no cycling since I was a kid.
“It’s time to get off the sofa and start living for me and my family.”
Visit Frankie’s Just Giving page