Rachel's story – Running 50 miles for Mum

Friday 30 April 2021

Ųʿ Wirral

In January, Rachel and her sons decided to honour her mum's memory and fundraise for Ųʿ by taking part in the Run 50 miles Facebook challenge.

My mum Sandra was amazing. To me, she wasn’t just a mum; she was my friend. To my boys, Harry and Thomas, she was the most amazing nan.

She used to balance two jobs - one at Tesco and the other as a barmaid - but she’d still always make time for the children.

Every day before I left for work in the morning, I’d hear her keys in the front door at 7 am, just popping in to see if there was anything she could do to help us. She was the definition of selfless.

Mum and Maggie’s

She always found it really helpful to have a place where she could talk about her cancer. She would often say to us that as the mum, she was supposed to be the strong one.

Maggie’s was the place she knew she could go to just for her - to talk, to get her feelings out, and not have to worry. 

She just loved it there and took part in loads of courses - she loved Look Good Feel Better.

Even when she was poorly and had worries, it was something she could look forward to. 

Taking on 50 miles

It’s been two years since she died. When I saw the Maggie’s Run 50 miles challenge I thought, ‘this is just perfect’.

Mum passed away on 31 January, which lined up with the last day of the challenge, two years later.

That was that. In January, we got our trainers on and started running. Our aim was to raise £300.

The boys were both quite young when she died and the Run 50 miles challenge felt like a really positive way to keep her memory going.

Battling the elements

The weather in January was horrendous: it was so cold. Sometimes I’d be running and my teeth would be numb. But we kept going, running and posting our updates on the Facebook group.

On some days I’d question whether we could do it. But every time, afterwards, we’d just feel brilliant.

Whenever we shared our run on the Facebook page, the support was amazing.

There was one really tough day where we only managed a mile and it felt like the 50 miles would never be done.

We posted it on the Facebook group not expecting much, but everyone on there was so brilliant and supportive, telling us it was one less mile to run and that we could do it. That could have been a low point but in the end, it really spurred us on.

Seeing that support, how everyone has been running across the country, has been inspiring.

In the end we raised £710 for Maggie’s, almost twice what we had set out to.

And what’s more, we finished on the anniversary of Mum’s death. It was the perfect way to remember her. It’s such a great feeling knowing that the money we raised will support Maggie’s — a place that Mum so loved.

This story was originally published in Making Ųʿ May 2021 edition.

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