The Distance

I think I lost myself for a bit there. Now I’m just a new me. But I went from being me, to losing myself, to being a new me.

I didn’t get to be the original me again … not that I wanted to.

If I’m not making any sense, let me just put it this way: Infertility was one hell of a transition period.

I don’t want to forget. I don’t think I ever could. But I’m working to figure out who I am again … or now. Allison et al. Wife. Mommy.

The last three years put me through a lot. Can I say hell? My hell? I think I did decent, though. There were moments—really, really bad moments. I don’t really know how I got through it. I just did. You just have to keep living. “Life sucks, my heart is broken, but I’m still breathing, so I guess I’ll have a drink or go see a movie or find something valuable about this life and pursue it, go do it, enjoy it.” Have your moment, then move on.

There was sadness—like, maybe I want to kill myself, but that’s a little too selfish … type of sadness. There was rage. The never ending cycle of unfairness. You want me to do what, pay what, suffer how long?

Fine I’ll do it, but it’s not fair. Doesn’t it make you want to pull your hair out? … and I have a lot of hair.

Gah, it’s just so fuckin’ hard! I hate it. I hate every bit of it, every single ounce.

But I am thankful. I was so meant for this. I remember telling my mom about the twins, the fact that there were two. What did she say? “Oh Allison, you’re going to be ‘Mommy’. You’re going to be one busy, busy mommy.” I could hear the smile in her voice, and I could hear her unspoken words: “You were meant for this, Allison.” Because I was, and I am.

A good friend wrote me a letter congratulating me. She was one of my college teammates and roommates. She is of the fertile people! I have much reason to believe that she doesn’t understand what I’ve been through (praise Jesus), but she loves me. And she knows who I am.

Those of you who are familiar with the sport of cross-country and/or long distance running, in general, understand that this is a sport of grit. Of your heart and soul. And there is surely a sisterhood among those who endure the races together. And that sisterhood still remains among those who compete against each other—to make herself and her sister better, stronger, and faster. Dear Jesus, it’s a beautiful thing.

Yes, there is training. There is technique. There is talent. But—really—the only thing standing between you and a faster you is your heart. Prepped and ready to go at the start line, there is much adrenaline because it’s going to hurt.

It meant so much to me to receive this letter from my friend. She’s followed my journey and is celebrating with me. I value my TTC sisters; you are all in my heart. But there is something special about a friend—who hasn’t experienced this—reaching out to remind me that I’m Alli Mac; I’m baby beast; I’ve got this.

I can’t say that running an 800-meter race or marathon compares to infertility … because it doesn’t. But I think God chose me to suffer because I have some grit; I’m a little bit of a mess. Infertility, you will not tell me no.

My friend—my teammate—reminded me of this. Of me.

So, thank you dear friend. This one’s for you.

“Keep your head up, your heart strong.” – the beautiful, really, really fast Shalane Flanagan (who is among the grittiest, in my opinion :))

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11 thoughts on “The Distance

  1. It’s a very strange transition trying to “re-find” yourself after infertility. It’s like you are who you are because of your experiences, especially those from early in life. However, you’ll never become that exact person you were the day before you started the journey to mommyhood. Then, it’s all about finding the NEW you. I think it’s awesome that it sounds like you’re ready to find who that is so soon. I think you can only become someone even better now….stronger for sure, both because of who you were before (the resilient track athlete) & also for what you’ve gone through to become a mom. You are going to be an amazing mother! So excited for this new chapter for you!!

  2. What a beautiful friend! It takes someone really special to acknowledge all that you’ve been through while not understanding it entirely. Hope you’re doing well, sweet friend!

  3. This is awesome! I agree with you… it means something on a very different level when those “outsiders”, who love us and know us yet don’t quite understand the hell we have been through [and may continue to go through], reach out and acknowledge the struggle.
    Love you so much!!!!

  4. This is beautiful. You have a delicate way of describing a god awful struggle.

    I’m also learning about the new me. IF will always be part of the story, but I’m ready to write the new chapters, the mama chapters.

    So happy for you and your family!!!

  5. this is another very beautiful post you are sharing. Thank you.
    Yes, you were meant for this. Why else would you want to be a mommy so badly, and move heaven and earth to do it. Some people are happy not having kids. And some people cannot imagine their lives without children. I think that’s us here. And being denied just makes our resolve stronger.

    What a lovely gesture from your friend, and a heartfelt thank you shared in this post. It sounds like this friend knows you and loves you deeply. That’s such a gift.

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