Childbirth, Relationship, Half Marathon …
So much in common. You may recall I am training for a half marathon on October 22nd. As I ran my required four miles on Thursday I thought about how much these three endeavors have in common.
I was thinking…I entered into these things (childbirth, relationship, half marathon) with incredible hope and anticipation and naïveté. At a certain point in each journey the real struggle began and I wondered, “Is this really worth it? Why am I doing this again?”
Childbirth: There is an amnesia, many women recognize, which comes with childbirth. It must be a protective, adaptive evolution of procreation that allows a mother to forget just how much pain and work childbirth creates. When she is experiencing sexual intimacy for pleasure or with the intent to eventually birth a child, I am pretty sure she is not recalling the pain of childbirth. Even as the contractions begin, there is a sense of delight at the impending birth. Until it gets to a certain point, where the pain is intense, the stamina is fatigued, the amnesia ceases, and the will says “I can’t.” Many a mother wonders at that point, “Why am I doing this again?”
Relationship: …specifically the life-partner type of relationship. Marriage. It’s pretty much my ultimate, my idol, that on which I placed all of my hopes. On the one hand I can blame myself for putting such an expectation on my marriage which simply could not be fulfilled. I expected my marriage relationship to fix every heart hurt and mental confusion. Ha! Little did I know that marriage had the potential to multiply all of those ailments.
On the other hand I can be angry and bitter that John forced the end of our marriage when the potential for the fulfillment of my hopes was just around the corner.
Shortly after the divorce was final, I was ready to jump right back into marriage. I’m not sure what amnesia overcame me, but I was so sure being married would be everything I had ever expected. And I figured I had learned so many lessons with John I was well ready for whatever a relationship could throw my way. Fail! No! “Why am I doing this again?” I am an emotionally charged person. Generally I am open to instruction and criticism….but with a spouse type person I seem to get ultra-sensitive and hurt. What was I thinking? “Is this really worth it?” I can’t do this.
Half Marathon: Thursday’s run was relatively easy. It was a 4 mile run, compared to the 7 mile run I did last Saturday. At about mile 3 I almost let myself feel like I wanted to give up the whole endeavor. It is a lot of work training for this half marathon. My pace is slow. My goal for the half marathon is 13 minute miles. My goal for my shorter training runs is 12 to 12.5 minute miles. For me to complete the mileage of the training plan, it takes quite a good bit of time.
On top of that, my running ailment is that (Too Much Information alert….) I have an internal hemorrhoid which gets easily irritated almost every time I run. I time my run to make sure my lower GI is empty , before I eat breakfast. (I don’t think you wanted to read that) And despite that, if I run hard enough to achieve my goals I am in discomfort for a good portion of the morning. And as hard as it is to build up my running pace, it is so easily diminished if I skip some days. So I really can’t let myself skip or I will lose all of my momentum.
“Is this really worth it? Why am I doing this again?”
The answer is “Yes, it is worth it.”
Childbirth, relationship, half marathon….
“Why am I doing this again?”….Childbirth – because those guys are worth every bit of toil, sweat, and tears. Why relationship and why half marathon….honestly, I don’t know the answer right now. But the answer IS yes. A resounding yes.