My boobs are big, and I am beginning to feel bouts of mild nausea and tiredness. I still however have a tiny feeling that perhaps I am making this all up. Maybe I am not really pregnant, maybe I just want to be pregnant. To shake off the morning feelings, I head to the gym for my morning workout. Today it’s simple – a mile time trial and some strength training. I have been given the go ahead by my PT and coach to start training hard again after 2 big expeditions and a few injuries. It is also one week until I will be racing – a small race, but still I want to put in a couple good efforts before I show up on the start line.
Before I begin, I do the mental work to put the “I am pregnant” thoughts away- after all, it is way to early to feel any sort of the “shortness of breath” symptoms. That would only be a mental excuse. 1 min in, and I am out of breath, my heart feels like it is about to jump out of my chest and I am sweating like crazy. I say my usual mantras to myself: “This is supposed to hurt”, “you got this”, “fight”. For the next couple minutes I do everything in my power to keep pushing, to keep fighting. However something deeper tells me to stop. Just .3 miles to go and I hit the big red stop button. And I start crying.
I have done my share of working past mental blocks. After all, that is what racing is all about – and that is what I help people to do – to push past their mental, physical and emotional limits. Something is different here though. Shit, even writing this a few hours later and I am tearing up. I am officially making a human, and I need to and WANT to start paying attention.
But how do I balance my need and want to push myself physically with my need and want to be a healthy, thriving vessel for my growing baby? What about all of the races I want to do this summer? What will my training look like?
Will I loose my “edge”? What does this mean for my athletic career??
Are the fears that are in my head.
And then of course the excitement of all of the changes that are going on in my body, the amazing feelings and emotions, the gift of being able to bring another human into this world.
My head is a giant mixture of thoughts and emotions, “as it should be” I am told.
I didn’t go into this unknowingly. I thought I was prepared for this, I cleared my schedule of big races and have left much of next year (at least the beginning) open as well in hopeful anticipation of conceiving. But I am seeing (and feeling!) now that just keeping the boxes open on your calendar doesn’t mean that you are prepared for the waves of emotions and questions that come and go.
So far meditation helps, ALOT. Sitting every morning with my feelings and observing my thoughts and fears has brought a lot of space and peace. Also, being able to share my deepest, darkest and craziest thoughts with my amazing and patient husband who is just as (if not more fascinated) with what is going on with me is a life saver.