We caught up with
Peter Eaton-Maclean who did a spot of fundraising for us last month. He
explains all about how why he raised funds for Alopecia UK….
“I was never fully
aware of alopecia before. I had known a guy through work who had patchy hair
but I didn’t properly understand what it was. My first real encounter with
alopecia was when I met my wife, Mandy.
Mandy had no hair when
I met her. She’d had alopecia for around 2 years at that point I think, and she
was open with her baldness. I don’t think I ever really thought twice about it
though. I didn’t yet understand the challenges that alopecia can bring, but the
fact that Mandy didn’t have any hair didn’t change the person she was or how I
felt about her.
The more I got to know
Mandy, the more I got to understand the condition and what Mandy has to go
through. The unpredictable nature of regrowth, the challenges of standing out
from the crowd….luckily Mandy had very good friends to help her through it.
Later, she found Alopecia UK. The help and support the charity gives people, my
wife included, is amazing (I even got to experience it first-hand when I
accompanied Mandy to Alopecia UK’s Big Weekend event last year in Glasgow). I
felt like I wanted to give something back to the charity, to show my support
and to thank everyone involved.
So what to do?! I’ve
done half marathons before for Cancer Research but my knees are knackered now!
Then I remembered that I’d always wanted to push myself to kayak the Caledonian
Canal in a faster time than I’d previously managed (I’d previously completed it
in over 3 days before, in a proper sea kayak – something I didn’t have this
time). I knew it would be tricky but I’ve always felt that if I’m going to do
something for charity, I need to make it something really hard.
The idea was then
born; 60 miles of canals and lochs, within two days in a very unsuitable kayak!
The challenge was set!
itself….well….there are no nice words to describe it….actually, there was some
occasions of sunny weather – that’s about the highlight! The rest was a mixture
of pain, disheartening stretches of rough loch, intense cold where at times I
was genuinely concerned about hypothermia, blood dripping from what were
originally blisters on my thumbs (they evolved way beyond blisters!) and down
But it was all worth
it! The knowledge that I was doing this for such a good cause kept me
going….along with lots of chocolate and cheese!
Now looking back, it wasn’t all doom and gloom. What I remember is the sense of
achievement in completing the task. I have such pride in my wife for how she
deals with her alopecia and gratitude to Alopecia UK for being there for Mandy
and many many others.”
Wow! What a champion!
Thanks so much to Peter for sharing his story with us and for his fundraising
efforts for Alopecia UK. We hope the blisters have healed!
Peter raised a whopping £500.00 for Alopecia UK but his Justgiving page is still open. If you've been impressed by his efforts, we're sure he would appreciate any additional late donations to his page. Click here to show your support.