I have laced up for many years because I like to be out and about running with friends. It’s a great way to see new places, new cities, and meet new people who are just as enthusiastic enough to brave the elements as you are. Then, a few years ago, I felt the calling that many women do. The need to nurture and expand my family. I began trying and was fortunate enough to get pregnant right away. I was elated. I knew I was supposed to wait but I called my friends and family and shared the news. I could feel my body changing and started planning, as silly as it may sound, the races we would run together, the stroller I would buy, coming home from a run to see their face and share my stories with them. And then it happened. It all crashed down around me. There was no heartbeat. It had stopped. I had forgotten how to breathe as well. I couldn’t think about walking, running, laughing. My life had stopped moving forward. My girlfriends called me and encouraged me to just come out with them for a run. I didn’t know if I could. I was scared to try but they were gentle and understanding and allowed me to just be present with each emotion I felt along the way. I could feel my feet on the pavement in each moment and that allowed me to just be with myself. It was the first piece of me moving forward. Unfortunately, from there I lost five more angel babies along the way.
Running, yoga, meditation and strong relationships helped me through. Every time I go out, I feel my angel babies carrying me and encouraging me. They are with me and allow me to be my best self along the roads. When I feel like giving up, I think about my friends who held me and wouldn’t let me give up on myself. They knew that movement, community, and conversation would allow the healing to begin. Running doesn’t always have to be about speed or the number on the watch. For me during this time, it was about rubber to road; going out and finding me again. I found other women who had stories of loss and stories of strength and we shared and found each one of us had power in one another. We could call and meet up at 5am or 5pm for a run without questions asked and just go. I love the community and what it has given me. Thank you running community. You have me, myself and my opportunities to continue searching. I can’t wait to see what I find.