Less than 3 days and counting to the race. I have a confession – I am tired.
After 12+ weeks of getting up at anywhere between 3.30am and 4:30am 5 days a week, these early morning awakenings are taking their toll. It is now that the shift goes from requiring physical strength to requiring mental strength to complete this race. My running partner picked me up last Saturday and off we went.
We did the full distance of 13 miles and one of two goals was accomplished. I finished strong. No injuries. The achilles held, the knees held, the hips held. I felt good. I felt like we were going fast. My watch let me know the distance was complete, time was up. I looked at my watch and saw the time. My shoulders dropped. It was NOT what I was expecting. I had purposely not kept an eye on my watch as I was doing this run based on how my body felt. The displayed time did not represent what I expected. In that split second the mind fight began. Though I finished strong, I felt like my body had let me down by not achieving a faster time.
Anyone who has ever asked their body to perform and had it fail them, please do an air fist pump for me at this point!
It could be a sport, it could be IVF, it could be simply life but when you put the effort in this vessel and it does not show up the way you expect it to – well truly it really can mess with your head! You put in all the healthy requirements and yet the absolute letdown is real.
The first symptom to display itself when this happens is that of over thinking. If you are an over thinker – please do a second fist pump for me!
All you over thinkers know where I was at and I could not get out of my own head. I sat there on the edge of my bed with my head in my hands. Instinctively I knew what I needed to do…but for some reason all the tools I had learnt about when you have a bad day seemed completely inadequate.
I needed some inspiration.
Thankfully, inspiration is abound at Barbados Fertility Centre! I went into our waiting room and stopped and spoke to one lady who had reached out to us earlier in the year. She had just had her embryo transfer. She hugged me and thanked me for our support and was feeling very positive. Love, magic and IVF science were the roots of her hope she told me. I squeezed her hand and turned. Unbeknown to her, the lady sitting at the other end of the waiting room had just had a miscarriage confirmed. I walked over to her, sat on the couch and with no words required I hugged her tight. In that exchange she whispered into my ear, “Rachel, I’m not giving up, this will happen!” I wouldn’t let her go for a few more moments and pulled her tighter. As we unfolded our arms, the resolve in her wet eyes was the jolt I needed. Dr. Corona called her at that point and they went onto make the plan for the next step.
I walked back into my office only to open an email from a past patient who sent us pictures of their twins celebrating their first birthday. I couldn’t help but once again put my head in my hands. The picture of those boys represented the accumulation of what was sitting in the waiting room. Hope, faith, and the courage to keep going and achieve your dream. The Head of the universe was speaking and it was time to listen.
Just like this in this run training, when you find yourself at the end of the road going through IVF and life; when your body is bruised and your mind is trying to control what it can’t; it is at this point in the road that it is most difficult and nothing seems more rational than to get off track and stop the grind. But it is also at this time that I challenge you to NOT take that side step. It is at this point I challenge you to make the decision to put one foot in front the next and to keep on your destined path.
I redefined the word HOPE after having the above experience last week and it is one with a practical application. Without meaning to sound cheesy, I think HOPE now represents H.ug O.ne P.erson E.veryday. Hugs are what set BFC apart from any other IVF clinic in the world. Anyone who has received a hug from Cyrilene knows exactly what I mean! In that connection you can transfer strength to and from one to another, it gives you the fuel to keep going and not give up. When the challenges come barreling at you, you need fuel, you need strength and hugs are just exactly that.
This week I encourage you that you don’t need to run a half marathon to learn the lessons of life, what you do need to do however is live the life you have been given and not give up on your dreams. Go the distance this week – give someone a hug.
This life is not for the faint hearted, you’ve got this and when you feel like you haven’t – you’ve got us!
– Rachel De Gale