Guest post: Becoming a better person

When you become a parent everything changes.

The obvious stuff starts straight away; you can no longer leave the house as a couple, alone. The rules of parenthood state that you must leave with a buggy, an overflowing nappy bag, milk at the perfect temperature, a change of clothes (for all parties) and your wallet. The law also states that you must take the baby in the buggy. It is considered bad parenting to leave the child home alone.

Apart from your freedom ebbing away and being replaced by an indescribable parental love, there is another change slowly working its way through you. You lose your tough exterior and develop a softness that makes you well up at cute images of babies that are not your own. Horror films on Halloween are switched off, because when you have your own child it is not as desirable to see the evils of another person’s imagination.

When I had my baby twins, I found it near impossible to read a paper or listen to the news without sobbing because of something child related. Nothing seems as distance or as inconceivable when you have children of your own.

How to channel the change

Since becoming a mum I care more, and therefore I do more. Other people’s plights mean more, and I am frequently sponsoring people to jump out of a plane, run awe inspiring distances, or swim in the local, freezing lakes. I want the world to be a better place for my kids to live in, I want to see an end to Cancer, I pray for a day when conditions like Diabetes are no more.

Since becoming a mum, I have campaigned, fundraised and looked to a brighter future.

My first attempt to fundraise online was in 2008. I ran the London Marathon for Action Medical Research. They spend money raised via sponsorship on medical research into ways to prevent premature birth. My twins were lucky enough to be born at term, but I read countless stories about multiple births that were born far too soon.

In 2009, I ran the New York Marathon. This time my cause was closer to home and I ran for my friend’s son. He was the same age as my children and had acute myeloid leukaemia. I ran and raised money online for the Anthony Nolan Trust, who are a major researcher into stem cell technology and bone marrow transplants. In 2011, after the birth of my third child, I ran for the same charity again, this time in celebration. Following a successful stem cell transfer, my friend’s son was in remission; in short he was going to live.

Since being a mum, I think I have become a better person.

Author: Jane Blackmore is a blogger, writer and mother to three. When not fundraising or running a really long way she can be found on twitter talking rubbish or out in the garden with a nice glass of red.