I registered for a half marathon in Duluth (the much-loved “Grandma’s Marathon”) and found out today that I didn’t get in. They run it as a random lottery and there were 8,200 registrants for 6,300 spots. I’m disappointed. I ran this half two years ago in 2010 when we were between cycles. It was my sanity during such a crazy time – running was the one thing in my life that I had control over. I didn’t run while we were cycling because – well – I don’t really know. I know there was my unfounded concern about my ovaries getting all twisted up because they were the size of grapefruits (because I was quite the little hen) and quite honestly – I think I was just plain depressed. No – I know I was just plain depressed. But the bottom line is that when I did run, those runs were the happiest moments of my days, weeks, and months. Running the half at Grandma’s gave me something to focus on (besides getting pregnant) – something to train for – SOMETHING TO CONTROL – and it made me HAPPY.
This year, I clearly do not have control over getting into the best half marathon in the Midwest. This pains me just a little 😉
This all reminds me of the most important thing I learned from our IF struggle. I am a control freak (no – I did not learn that while dealing with IF. I already knew that!). I.must.control.EVERYTHING. I very vividly remember our wonderful RE talking to us from behind his desk, saying, “Courtney, I get the feeling that you need to be in control. You’re not in control here.” Whoa! I knew he was right, but I was a little thrown off by this. No one had ever said that to me before about something so important, or at least that I could remember. And honestly, when he said that, I thought to myself, “well, I’m going to control what I can.”
I need a plan for everything. I need a road-map. I kept asking our RE, “but what if this cycle doesn’t work – what then? I need to know what the plan is.” He was very obliging to my craziness and did work out a very, very detailed plan for us and made promises I held him to after our FET cycle didn’t work (and thank goodness I did because that plan then led to our baby boy!). Nothing we hoped would work worked – and this is hard for a controlling person to accept. If I put my mind to something, and I KNOW I can do it, then I succeed. It’s that simple. I don’t put my mind to things I know I can’t be successful at because I think that’s a waste of my time. Well – I thought I would be successful at getting pregnant – so I put my mind to it. And I failed. Time and time again – I failed.
All of those failures made me a better person – a less controlling person. I learned very quickly to accept the fact that I can’t control everything in my life, no matter how hard I try. I apply this to my everyday life, and this is a huge development (improvement) for me. I went from pretty much controlling everything I possibly could, to not even having a desire to control the types of things I used to crave control of.
So today when I got rejected by Grandma’s, I let it roll off my back. I mean – I did know there was a chance I wouldn’t get in and that it would have nothing to do with how hard I tried. I didn’t even pre-book a hotel room like I did back in 2010 because I figured I probably wouldn’t get in since I’d been successful (lucky) already once before. The odds, like IVF, were in my favor, but not strongly in my favor. I accepted that and just hoped and waited. I even found another half marathon in MSP to run just in case I didn’t get into Grandma’s. I had a backup plan because I knew I had no control over my primary plan. This type of behavior would not have occurred prior to my IF struggle.
Today, I registered for the MSP half marathon and I’m really excited about it! It won’t be Grandma’s, but it will be fun and who knows, it may be better! The one problem is that it’s two weeks before Grandma’s, so I’m already behind on my training. I have some work to do – and it starts tomorrow.
Ahhhhh…. good old control…. welcome back, my friend! Please keep your distance unless it has to do with my running schedule!
February 28, 2012 at 8:09 am
Okay…you are starting to freak me out! I quit running a few years ago, probably also due to depression and just haven’t been able to hit the pavement since. I’m amazed I didn’t pick it back up again as something I could be in control of, like you said. While TTC, everything else just sort of dropped away. I have it in my head that once the spring hits and we get a jogger/bike trailer strolled thingy I’ll pick it back up. This post certainly helps fan the flames!
It’s interesting – I don’t think that I’m less ‘controlling’ now per se, but that I’m less anxious about it, if that makes sense. I still want done what I want done (and in the way that I want it!), but I am more at ease with it getting done WHEN it gets done, you know? It will get done eventually. That’s a huge step and an interesting side effect of IF I think.
Sorry you missed out on the lottery. That sucks. The only lottery race I’ve ever done was the full in NYC and I miraculously made it in. The MSP route looks great, especially the riverside portion!
February 28, 2012 at 10:11 pm
I think you’re right. I’m still controlling, just more relaxed about the “when” aspect of things. Like you, if I want something done – it’s going to get done!
Wow – a full marathon! I don’t see myself ever doing that. The training is so brutal and time consuming. Good for you!