I feel like I need to add a disclaimer before I get into this post. This blog is about two things. The first – sharing our life with the people who we love and miss dearly and no longer live a quick drive from. The second – documenting our life for our own sake. The highs, the lows, everything (I feel comfortable sharing with The Internet). And this is a venting post. No matter how I sound in this post, I am SO happy to be 18 weeks pregnant with a (so far) healthy baby. I cannot wait to meet this person, to see who he or she will be, but I am relishing in the fact that I get to spend 22 or so more weeks building a very special bond to this little guy or girl. I wouldn’t trade it for the world, and I would give up anything to make sure he or she is safe and healthy.
I am a runner. I have been since my fun run in 4th grade when I lapped everyone. Since my competitive spirit reared it’s ugly head. Since my dad took me to the store to buy a pair of “Running Shoes” – not tennis shoes, not sneakers, but “Running Shoes.” Specifically made to make me run faster, harder, longer. It’s been a love affair with running since.
We’ve had our ups and downs, Running and I. We’ve got months without speaking. But we always found our way back together. We’ve run hundreds and thousands of miles. We’ve sweat it out, bundled up and faced the cold, and we’ve even had a few tearful, heat cramped jaunts. But no matter what, we are always here for each other.
Running is my time. It is my time to think about anything. The future, my fears, my worries, my problems. The future, my joys, my elations, my hopes. Though I almost always have a companion in dog form on my runs (at least for the last 4 years), often, my runs are solitary. I welcome a run with my loving husband, whenever he wants to join in on the fun, but really, running is the time I use to get into my mind.
I learned the lesson of support in running at my first Marathon. I ran the first 13 miles with a crowd cheering me on the whole way. Shouts of “Go Green!” kept my spirits lifted and my goal attainable (Green was the color bib you were assigned if you were a first time marathoner). The second 13.2 miles were a doozy. The crowd waned. I was exhausted. Hungry. Tired. Thirsty. I don’t know if just Running and I would have made it on our own. Which is why I was so grateful for the man who bought me my first pair of running shoes, who introduced this love of Running to me. He ran at my slow pace, by my side, until the end of the race, when he dropped back and let me cross the finish line on my own.
Obviously, Running and I have a history. But there is a reason I have’t talked about it on the blog yet. We’ve been having a hard time. For the first trimester of this pregnancy, I was too sick and too tired to get out into the heat and go for a run. I wasn’t even able to go for many walks. I spent my time on the couch, reminding myself that it was all SO worth it. And it was.
My second trimester started up with a bit of relief. I had my old energy back. I wasn’t sick anymore. I could eat enough fuel to get off the couch. I tried to get back to running. But we lived in Arkansas where it was 95 degrees at 8am. 105 at 9. Way too hot for a pregnant lady to be sweating. So my runs turned into run-walks, and then slowly into walks as I started to get visits from my old friend, The Heat Cramp.
When we moved to Mississippi, the weather, while more humid, was a bit cooler. So I had high hopes. I hoped that I would be able to get out and run my pregnant little butt off again. Stretch my legs. Reconcile with running. Unfortunately, it hasn’t been that easy. I’m able to run, yes. But because of the ligaments in my pelvic bone and hips stretching to make room for Baby, I can’t run hard, fast, or strong. It’s a slow jog. It’s a short jog. And it’s not the same.
It’s been a rough time going. Walking is great, don’t get me wrong. I love biking, too. But I miss running. I miss sweat dripping down my temple. I miss that burn in my legs after kicking it up a notch. I miss the breathlessness that comes with a sprint. I miss lacing up my shoes and knowing I’m getting a great workout. I miss thinking, because now it’s just worries. Worry about Baby. Worry about my body and pushing it too hard. It’s no longer a time to think, it’s a time to worry.
Running and I are going through a hard time. But we’ve done it before, and we’ve come out stronger every time. I’m not giving up. I’m not quitting. I’m not even waiting until Baby is here to accompany my in the jogger. I am doing my best. Running at my ability right now. Adding more biking, swimming, rowing, walking. But I will be back. And I will get stronger than ever.