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Norfolk woman who suffered six miscarriages is helping others come to terms with the experience

PUBLISHED: 06:30 20 October 2018

Caroline Pocock will run the London Marathon 2019 - in aid of the Miscarriage Association.Picture: Ella Wilkinson

Caroline Pocock will run the London Marathon 2019 - in aid of the Miscarriage Association.Picture: Ella Wilkinson

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A woman who has suffered six miscarriages is using her own experiences and her running shoes to help other women and their partners who find themselves in the same situation.

When Caroline Pocock, a reflexologist from Wymondham and her husband married they always planned to have children.

But, after suffering five miscarriages before successfully carrying a pregnancy to full term, the 36-year-old and her partner found themselves struggling to cope with the “lonely experience” of repeated miscarriages.

Now, the 36-year-old is helping other women through the experience of a miscarriage by helping to run support sessions at the Norfolk and Norwich University Hospital and has just signed up to run her first London Marathon in aid of the Miscarriage Association.

Falling pregnant after marrying, Mrs Pocock realised something was wrong in her first pregnancy when she started bleeding the day before her 12-week scan.

Caroline had her son Zach, after five preganancies ended in miscarriages. Picture: Caroline PocockCaroline had her son Zach, after five preganancies ended in miscarriages. Picture: Caroline Pocock

She said: “The doctors were quite dismissive, they said it’s probably nothing to worry about. They sent me away again but things got worse, I went back for my scan and that’s when they told me that there was nothing there, the baby had gone.”

Mrs Pocock said that although she was aware of the statistics - it has been estimated that around one in four pregnancies end in miscarriage - she and her husband never thought it would happen to them.

Viewing the first miscarriage as “bad luck” the couple tried again: “We tried to keep a positive and thought maybe it’s just bad luck but next time the same thing happened, a bit earlier on this time at eight weeks. Then it happened again and I ended up having five miscarriages between 2009 and 2011, all around the seven, eight, nine week mark.

“I knew people had miscarriages but you don’t think it’s going to happen to you, because you think, I’m young and healthy nothing is going to go wrong.”

Caroline Pocock who only started running last year. Picture: Caroline PocockCaroline Pocock who only started running last year. Picture: Caroline Pocock

Mrs Pocock said that with each miscarriage, those around her were supportive but the whole experience was a very lonely one and took a strain on both her and her husband.

“I found with each miscarriage, everyone was always very supportive but I didn’t feel like there was any one that I really could speak to who had been though the same sort of thing as I had, it can be such a lonely experience.”

Mrs Pocock said she didn’t understand why more women didn’t speak about their miscarriages: “I don’t know why it’s a taboo I really don’t, if your dad died you would tell people and they would support you. But I think because people don’t see it as a physical being and when it’s early on in a pregnancy I don’t think people can get their heads around why you’re so upset.

“But when you see that positive pregnancy test you see your baby, you think of the due date, you think of the name, you’re automatically planning for the future. So, it’s not just the physical emotions you’re going through it’s also what you had planned for your future.”

She said that the recurrent miscarriages also took their toll on her husband and this was something she raised in hospital support sessions.

She said: “You forget about the partners because it’s always focussed on the woman but my husband had to live through it with me.

“I didn’t really appreciate how much it affected him until one day I found him crying on the phone to his dad.”

After five miscarriages Mrs Pocock became pregnant for a sixth time, the pregnancy went full term and their son Zach was born in 2013. The couple fell pregnant once more after Zach but this pregnancy also ended in a miscarriage.

Looking ahead to April 2019, Mrs Pocock, who is hoping to raise at least £2,500 for the Miscarriage Association said she was excited about the prospect of running her first London Marathon despite only taking up running last year.

“I’m really excited and everyone has been so supportive. I’m hoping to do as well as I can and get lots of people to raise awareness and lots of money.”

To donate to Mrs Pocock’s fund visit: uk.virginmoneygiving.com/carolinepocock3

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