Monday, March 12, 2012

A Change in Body Image

For years I have been frustrated and ANGRY with my body for not doing what it's "supposed" to do.  I always assumed that getting pregnant and carrying a baby was easy--almost too easy!  Then I got the curve ball, the two year wait to get pregnant with Griffin....but it happened and my pregnancy was perfect and he was perfect, so I assumed the struggle was over.  Then you know the story,  pregnancies were difficult to come by, two of them costing us about $30,000 in one year, and every pregnancy since Griffin resulted in a miscarriage.  My body failed me when I needed it most.  DESPERATE to have another baby, yet I couldn't rely on my body.  I did what the doctors told me--lightened up on my workouts, gave up caffeine, stabbed myself with shots, popped pills, but still complete failure.  I was left grieving, out of shape, and worst of all, with an empty belly.

Ann and Jordi's wedding came along and I started to take "control" of my body again.  Eating better, exercising, taking care of myself.  I talked to my doctor about my blood sugar, overall health and disappointment with my body....on so many levels.  I listened to what he told me.

This year I started setting new goals.  Goals that were for me, difficult in my eyes, but obtainable.  One involved running.  My workout buddy and I started to exercise together another day a week.  We worked harder than before.  I connected with friends that encouraged me. And, if you know me, you know that I am determined and competitive with myself, that worked in my favor.

In February I ran 5 miles by myself.  Soon after, my running buddy (do you like that name by the way?) and I ran 6 miles...on a snow covered trail....HARD WORK!

On Saturday I decided to go for a run.  It was beautiful out and I felt great.  I started thinking about how much I used to hate my body, but now I am amazed with what it can do.  I never imagined that I would be able to run 5 miles, let alone 6!  As I was running, I was getting choked up, I felt like the anger I had about my body was leaving me and instead of negative thoughts I was filled with positive thoughts--what I COULD do instead of what I COULDN'T do.  I called Jamie to let him know that I thought I would run farther than I expected, so not to worry if I wasn't home for a little while.  I turned around and headed for home, thankful for what I could do.  I got home to my very proud boys.  Jamie made me banana chocolate chip pancakes and a fried egg and told me to keep stretching.  He always takes good care of me.  I left to clock my route and was excited to see the distance increasing.....3.5, 3.7, 3.8.....4.5, 4.6, 4.7, 4.8!  4.8 way!  Astounded (and a little ticked I didn't get to 5 miles--you know me!), I ran a total of 9.6 miles.

It was a very liberating experience for me.  I had no idea I could do it.  My body didn't fail me, it kept going.  And, I felt great.  What a memorable day for me, a defining point in my healing process.

We celebrated with family coffee drinks (a hot chocolate for the little man).  I called my running buddy, she was so proud!  I called my mom, too.  She was so proud, too, and my dad gave me one of his classic comments that always crack me up....  My mom: Ron!  Heather ran 9.6 miles!  My dad: Tell her to quit that!
I love it! :)


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