I was born in 1980 in a hospital in Kent, a month premature and I was born with the condition Microtia. Microtia is a congenital deformity of the outer ear where the ear does not fully develop.
One of my ears is affected. Whilst this condition is not life threatening it caused hearing loss in one ear and it did make me an easy target for ridicule at school. I was the ‘Boy with 1 ear’ or ‘Van Gough’ and it wasn’t always easy to deal with.
When I was born, the hospital did operate on my ear to try and open the ear structure but in doing so scarred the ear tissue quite badly. Therefore, when I was 10 years old I was referred to the Mount Vernon Hospital, where my life was about to change. I met a surgeon who offered me a few different reconstruction surgery ideas. We agreed on the surgery and the long process began in which they used some of my rib cartilage to form the shape of my new ear.
I spent a lot of time on Rainbow Ward at Mount Vernon Hospital. As strange as it sounds I have many happy memories from my time on the Ward. The Nurses were incredible and I will always remember how much they cared for me. My mum stayed with me for every operation and one of my memories was waking up to 2 Nurses and my mum singing along to ‘Don’t break my heart’ by Billy-Rae Cyrus (Yes it was that long ago!). This Hospital helped change my life. Now no one really notices my reconstructed ear and if they do, are amazed when I tell them how it was formed.
This year has been another life changing time for me. Over the years I had been slowly putting weight on. I was content and happily married with 2 amazing children and didn’t even notice how much weight I had
been putting on. In January 2018, I decided to make some important changes for my health and wellbeing. I started exercising and dieting and have now lost over 6 Stone. I have found huge enjoyment in exercising and decided to apply for the London Marathon 2019,
never imagining I would be fortunate enough to get a ballot place.
With my ballot place in the bag, I have decided it will be a great opportunity to give something back to the place that gave me so much, not that I can ever truly repay my gratitude to the team of amazing health professionals who helped me.
I hope that I can raise as much money as possible to continue the great work that they do for other children like me.
Look out for me on the TV or in London when I complete the London Marathon in April 2019.
Thanks so much in advance for your support.
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