May 11, 2016

Silver Linings

For those of you have been reading for a while, you know that a Disneyland Paris has been on my wish list for years, since December 2012 to be exact. I dreamed of the time when this race would become a reality and I could combine one of my favorite race experiences, runDisney, with one of my favorite places, Paris.  When the race was announced a year ago February, I was excited but wasn't sure where life would take me in the 18 months until the race day. During that time, I became engaged, got married, started a new career, and dreamed of starting a family. In full disclosure, I also became less enthusiastic about runDisney for a variety of reasons so my excitement had waned (but that's a topic for another day). With a flexible transfer policy, I registered but never really was 100% committed. Simply put, I wasn't confident about registering for an overseas race so far in advance. 
Spending a very chilly afternoon at Versailles

My parents visited us for Easter earlier this spring. It was during that visit that Mom and I chatted about the race. She handed me a copy of the medical paperwork for the race, customary for European races. I tossed it aside thinking I wouldn't need it. You see, later that same day, Adam and I shared the news that we were expecting our first child and the timing of the race just wouldn't work late into the pregnancy. I was pretty bummed about missing the race but starting our family was a much greater priority for me.  My mom planned to offer my spot to my aunt who had expressed interest in the race. At the time, I thought that was the end of that. 

A few weeks later, the pregnancy abruptly ended. To say we were devastated is an understatement and at the time, I wasn't ready to share any of that here. To be honest, I wasn't sure if I ever would but here we are. In the weeks that have followed that sad day, Adam and I started piecing together life post-pregnancy, but lacking a child, the child we both desperately dreamed of. I started a new career, which served as a welcome distraction. We progressed with some projects around the house. Slowly, we moved on, but not without a different perspective on life and of our dreams of starting a family. 

And then one day a few weeks later, Mom mentioned Disneyland Paris again. I had completely forgotten about it following the stress and emotional roller coaster of a miscarriage and starting a new job. My Aunt wasn't able to take my slot so all of a sudden, my dream race was an option again. It's back on my radar and I'm planning to try to make it a reality.
Looking forward to some fall fun in my favorite
European city with my mama. 
In some ways, it's a bit of a silver lining following this challenging time in our lives. As I told my husband during our run last Saturday, running has helped make me feel whole during this period of loss in our lives. It's a time when my body feels strong, I feel alive, and I can process my thoughts and emotions. After feeling as though my body betrayed me, pounding out the miles reminds me that this same body is capable of a lot. Who knows, maybe Disneyland Paris will be the PR race I've been longing for. At this point, I'm open to all options. 

Running and writing are traditionally my outlets for when I'm feeling down, stressed, or confused. I have written dozens of essays and blog posts that have never been published simply to work through my thoughts and emotions. I wasn't ever sure if I would share my story of pregnancy loss. I felt raw and sad. Who am I kidding? I still do. Seeing Mother's Day posts on social media all weekend long felt like a kick in the gut over and over. But want to know the thing about this blog, running, and life? We keep going. I will keep writing, keep moving toward the finish line, and continue to seek the day when we become parents. 

Like with many other challenges in life, I penned some thoughts on the stress and disappointment of miscarriage. You can find the article here.

{Christine}

52 comments:

  1. AW. Christine. I am sorry about your loss. I'm sending you a hug. Nothing I can say to make anything better, but know I am thinking about you.

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    1. Thank you Maggie. I truly appreciate that!

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  2. Oh, Christine. I'm so sorry--I wish there was something I could say that would take away your hurt and the longing that you feel. Know that you are not alone in those thoughts and feelings. (I have walked the road of miscarriage myself.) I'm glad you've been able to process your thoughts and grief by writing and felt brave enough to share. Vulnerability is hard but can be beautiful. I just started Daring Greatly by Brene Brown on that very subject. Keep processing! Wishing I could join you for a run to talk life. :) Love and thoughts from Georgia! -Katie

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    1. Thank you Katie! I have heard great things about that book. It's on my list. :) I deeply appreciate your kindness.

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  3. So sorry for your loss. That is a hard thing to go thru and I pray got for all. Glad you have your running and writing and I hope that working towards your Paris race will bring you some joy while you heal. I hope all good things got you in the future.

    Kelli V

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    1. Thank you Kelli. I'm grateful for the good and happy things we have in life these days.

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  4. So sorry to hear about your loss. You are very lucky to have such a strong support system with Adam and your family.

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    1. You are so right! The support system has been incredible and my crutch on my dark days.

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  5. So sorry for your loss, Christine. And you're so right - grief is why I started running in the first place and it's always been my favorite form of coping with the horrible in my life. And yeah for Disneyland Paris! I cannot wait to live vicariously through you!! Bring on the planning and training posts!

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    1. :) Thank you Jen. Running is so healing for me and I am grateful that I'm in a position to use it. It's helped me find my place again in life

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  6. Oh Christine, my heart is aching for you, but I'm glad to hear that you have running and writing as an outlet for working through the pain you've been dealing with. While I haven't myself had a miscarriage, a friend recently miscarried and it is so difficult to see the raw pain she's been facing, especially as she witnesses other people's joy with their children. I hope running in Paris in September proves to be exactly what you need in order to help you continue the healing process. And just think about all of the wonderful memories that you and your mom will be able to make together as you run Disneyland Paris!

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    1. Thanks, Kathryn. I'm grateful for the love and support of our family and friends. While I was ok with giving up the race, it's a nice thing to look forward to.

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  7. Oh no Christine. I'm so very sorry for you and Adam's loss.

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  8. Oh Christine, I am so sorry for your loss. I hate it when anyone joins the miscarriage baby loss club, its a very hard road. I wish there were magic words to make it all better, but sigh. I think Paris race will be a great for you. Wishing you peace...and hugs.

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    1. Thank you Julie. Slowly I'm finding peace but there are hard days for sure. Thank goodness for my own mom who has been a godsend in so many ways.

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  9. I'm so sorry for your loss. I can't even imagine the pain you must be going through but I applaud the way you're trying to pick up the pieces and cope. Hopefully the Patis race will be a welcome distraction and give you something to look forward to.

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    1. It is nice to have something to look forward to this fall. And having an outlet to share and "talk" to others in similar situations has been restorative.

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  10. Oh Christine, I'm so sorry to hear this, and so very sorry for your loss. I think you are very brave and very strong to share this news. Sending you big virtual hugs -- I'll be thinking of you.

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    1. Thank you, Becca. Like so many other negative things in life, hearing others say "me too" has been so helpful and supportive. I appreciate your kindness!

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  11. Christine I am so so sorry for your loss. I have been down that road a few times and I know how difficult that journey can be.
    I'm glad that Paris is back on the table for you and hope that you have an amazing time.
    Sending huge hugs your way.

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    1. Thanks Suzanne. Its not easy but knowing I'm not alone has helped me cope.

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  12. I'm so sorry to hear about the miscarriage. I'm glad running has been able to help you work through this hard time a bit.

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    1. Thank you Chiatali! Appreciate your kind words.

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  13. There's not much to say that hasn't been said. I have been there. But I was older and out of chances. You are young and have plenty of time. Now enjoy your running. Paris - that is a dream of mine. Can you take me along as your translator??

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    1. I would be happy to bring you along. My French is a bit rusty. :) Thank you for your kind words, Darlene.

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  14. well this is one of those posts I love & I don't love at the same time. I'm glad you'll be able to run Paris and I'm glad running is there to help you through this. But of course I'm terribly sorry to hear about the loss. I hope running & racing through the grief allows you to find peace. Hugs Christine & Pam (my momma always told me watching her kids hurt was almost as bad because she felt helpless to fix it)

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    1. I am so, so sorry for your loss. But you definitely have a strong support system, and you will get through this. DL Paris will be AMAZING. Sending positive thoughts your way!

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    2. Some days I am grateful for my running/blogging friends who are slightly older than me...in some ways, they have walked this section of road before me and get it. You and the broads always fall in this group. :) it's sucked to be totally honest. But empathy and grace get me through. <3

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    3. I know, sweet friend, I know. It does suck. BIG.

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  15. I am so sorry about the miscarriage. But I am so proud of you for your outlook, and also that you will be able to go after Paris again. Hang in there.

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    1. Thanks, Susie. Trust me, my outlook sucked for a good while. I had to take some time away from so much to digest and decompress, mentally and physically. Like so many things in life, sometimes it's just time to move forward, slowly if necessary.

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  16. Really sorry to read this, friend. Keeping you in my prayers and know that I'm in your corner! xx

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    1. Thanks Courtney. Really appreciate you being in my corner, today and always. :)

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  17. So sorry to hear about your loss Christine. I have had several friends who have walked the road of miscarriage. There's nothing anyone can say to take away the pain. My wife and I will never know that pain. We have had our own. We were told in January of 2012 that we wouldn't be able to have children without help. Infertility has its own pain that we have lived with and will continue to live with the rest of our lives. It's interesting to me to read that you know you have running as a way of helping you cope with your pain. I found running in the midst of mine. About a year after hearing the devastating news that we had fertility issues, I ran my first half marathon at the Tinker Bell Half. I ran that race just a few months into our time on the wait list for domestic infant adoption and caught the running bug. It was the We Run Disney blog you and your mom wrote that fanned the flames of this new interest and inspired me to run the 2014 WDW Marathon. When you talk about the punch in the gut of reading social media posts on Mother's Day, I feel you. On March 22nd (this year) my wife and I were finally chosen to adopt a little boy! After almost 3 and a half years on a wait list we never thought was going to end, we finally became parents. So, this year, for the first time, my wife was a mom on Mother's Day. After 5 or 6 Mother's Days of waiting for our family to start and feeling that same punch in the gut you felt, we finally got to celebrate. I don't know when you and your husband will become a family of 3. When it does happen, you will find a healing like nothing else. At least, that's what I've found. Every day, when I look at my son, it's like therapy. 6 years of living through hell on earth has lead to this amazing blessing. I hope that your wait to become a family of 3 doesn't take nearly as long.

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    1. Greg, thank you so much for taking the time to share. Your story is incredible and I am so happy for you and your wife! Wishing you nothing but happiness and joy with your son. What a blessing!

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  18. Oh Christine! I'm so very sorry for your loss. Keeping you in my prayers! Hugs my friend!

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    1. Thank you Mindy. I really appreciate that.

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  19. Aww, I feel for you. I had an ectopic pregnancy that ended in surgery. That pain was deep and hard to get past. I totally understand that feeling of betrayal. I am very sorry for your loss.
    Disney Paris will be an amazing experience and it is good to have something to look forward to. It is healing to have those moments where you can experience satisfaction and feel joy again.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words and for sharing. Really appreciate it! <3

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  20. I'm so sorry about your miscarriage. I've been there. And I've also raised these 2 boys after having them through IVF. People who don't have to struggle to have a baby don't get it. I'm so grateful for these boys.

    Thanks for sharing your struggle. And if you ever need to vent, to cry, to share...I'm here.

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    1. Thanks for your kind words and for sharing, Wendy. I had a very close friend go through IVF and it was so emotional even just watching. I wouldn't wish fertility issues on anyone. Really appreciate your support!

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  21. I am truly sorry about your loss. I can only imagine the toll that has taken on you and your husband!
    I do love your silver lining, maybe Paris Disney is exactly what you need.
    Running is such an amazing thing, it is a powerful healing and recovery tool in so many ways.
    Thank you for sharing your story, I know that couldn't have been easy to put into words and open up so much! Keeping you in my thoughts and prayers and sending you a virtual hug!

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    1. Thanks Kristy! Slowly I'm starting to feel more normal and have felt like rejoining most parts of the world. I still cringe some days when I see photos of new (or young) babies on social media or a see a family doing something that Adam and I like to do. But it's life. And I hope that this experience will make me a bit more empathetic.

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  22. Christine, I am SO very sorry for your loss. I don't understand the pain of a miscarriage but I do understand the feeling of longing for a child and my body betraying me. It's not an easy road to walk by any means and those who have never struggled with pregnancy just don't get it. I will be praying for you and Adam. My heart truly hurts for you guys. I'm so glad you have something like Disneyland Paris to look forward to!

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    1. Thank you, Karen. I really appreciate your kind words. And I know you have been there, slightly on a different path but one that hurts nonetheless. I am grateful that DL Paris is on the table and someday hopefully we'll be welcoming a baby with joy in our hearts. <3

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  23. Christine I am so, so very sorry to hear this news. I will be praying for yall. That is for sure exciting about DL paris though. Can't wait to hear all about it!

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  24. Thanks for sharing your story and how you've gone to find the silver lining in all of this. I am so sorry for your loss and know you will always love your little one that had other plans of their own. I look forward to continue reading about your running adventures and travel.

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  25. I'm so sorry for your loss. I'm so happy you have your family, friends, and running to help you through. I just read your post at She Knows, too. I think your story will be a comfort to others, just as other stories were a comfort to you. On a happier note, I am glad you have found a silver lining and am excited to hear more about your fabulous trip to Paris.

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  26. Wow. I'm so, so sorry for your loss. That's a terrible blow. I know being able to run in Paris won't make up for that loss but it's definitely great that you have something exciting on the horizon. Best wishes for you and Adam.

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  27. I'm so sorry Christine! I have been in your shoes. Twice. And I know nothing anyone can say really helps it to feel any easier. Just remember I'm thinking of you!

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  28. I'm so very sorry to hear this Christine. My heart breaks for you and your husband. I know the road of miscarriage and infant loss too well, but in the end two miracle daughters. Running was there for me and it is there for you too. The world works in mysterious ways and as much as it hurts now, trust that it will all work out. Disneyland Paris sounds perfect. xoxo

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