If you have read previous blog posts that I have written, you know that I am no stranger to negative pregnancy tests or needle sticks. With my first (and last) IVF cycle – and a chemical pregnancy result – behind me, I know that our family will not be growing. Most days, I don’t even think about it. Other days, I catch myself sneaking a few tears in the shower.

I’m up 15 pounds thanks to my IVF medication regimen and life didn’t give me the baby that we wanted. So a few weeks ago, once I got the “all clear” from my doctor, I did what I always do when I need to remember that my body isn’t a failure. I laced up my shoes and went for a run.

I’m not a fast runner, and I prefer running/walking intervals to keep this older body injury free. Even if I’m hardly the most graceful runner on the trail, I love it still. My body might not be able to get pregnant again, but it can run. I might not be able to meet my goal of having a sibling for my kindergartener, but I can hit my running goals. Running puts me back in control, puts me back at the wheel of the outcome.

When we were trying to get pregnant for the first time, I ran to keep my mind off of the uncertainty. I spent my time running talking to this child that I wanted so badly. After we got pregnant and delivered a healthy baby boy, I ran to get out of the house and sneak some time for myself in between nursing every 90 minutes. Once we started trying to get pregnant again, I ran to keep myself focused.

Now, with a failed IVF cycle just a few months behind me, I run to find myself. I am running to find out who I am outside of this infertility identity that has tailed me for the past 10 years of my life. I am running to show my son that Mama has goals and needs to practice things too. I run to make myself proud and to remind myself that my body is more than just an overweight failure (which is how I feel more times than I would like to admit).

Looking to get a fresh perspective on your body or take control of a life that is spinning? Lace up. Go for a run. I’ll meet you on the trail.

Blogger: Haley Burress