walking it off

As I sat around feeling sorry for myself yesterday morning, J didn’t quite know what to do with me. I was a bigger mess than I’ve been in awhile, and I was determined to stay that way. Eventually, she looked at me and said, “I think we need to go for a hike. What do you think?” My immediate reaction was to say no. I wanted to sit in my own misery all day. Then quickly, my rational side rescued me, and I remembered the mantra of gym teachers everywhere: when in pain, walk it off. So we packed some sandwiches and some water, and we headed out to walk off the pain of this cycle ending.

We went to this nearby state park that we had not yet explored. It consists of many different trails, some of which go straight up the small mountains in the park. We decided to follow a trail that went about halfway up one mountain and soon discovered that it linked with the main mountain trail, so we climbed and climbed and climbed until we could see the entire valley where we live:


We think it was probably about five miles total, but much of it (okay, half) was straight uphill. We’re still just intermediate hikers, and this was a bit more brutal than either of us had expected, but along the path, we both became lighter and happier. By the time we were back down the mountain, we were ready to move forward again, ready to leave the tears behind so that we can try again. It was beautiful.


HIking has unintentionally become our way of dealing with the loss of possibility. It seems that every time a cycle ends, we lace up our hiking shoes, pack a lunch, and head out on a new trail. It’s far healthier than drinking our way through it, and it give us the chance to leave some of the pain behind.

I’m better today, thanks to my wife. I’m going to try not to pin all of my hopes on this next cycle, but at the same time, I know that if it doesn’t result in pregnancy, we’ll figure it out. We always do.



Filed under coping, hiking, J, us

14 responses to “walking it off

  1. jessie

    Good for you for getting out and doing something. And getting exercise! I’m proud of you.

    I’m glad you have each other.

  2. i love this. thank you for sharing the story with photos. how beautiful. and fab arms btw!

    as ever, holding out much hope for you two.

  3. reproducinggenius

    Thanks–yes, we’ve been pretty avid hikers since we lived in our old California location. It was one of the only ways to pass the time there.

    And thank you for your hope, ohchicken. We need all the hope we can get.

    BTW: Those are my J’s arms, and yes they are beautiful. Mine: not so fab.

  4. this is incredibly inspiring. I am totally the girl that reaches for comfort food and booze in times of sadness of a failed cycle. If only I had gone hiking my ass might not be so big…

    sending love to you both.

  5. Wow. It’s pretty there. I need to remember that walk it off thing – I was never very good at gym.
    Sorry, babe.

  6. glad you were able to get outside, and some fresh air. It can be so hard to motivate, especially when you’re feeling sad. but once you do, it seems the “walking it off” really does help.
    BTW – those pics look like the SF Bay Area! Is that where y’all live? (We live down in South Bay, and hike on trails very similar to that!)

  7. i think i need a hike. i’d much prefer to get drunk and curl up in a little ball though…

  8. Bee-youtiful. That is GOOD to see. It’s what we try to do too, but not as often as we like (I’m dragging vee out today in your honour if we don’t have too much work on)! Fab photos! xx

  9. jay

    PS: That was me, jay, above… obviously!

  10. beautiful love. i’m so proud of you and wish I could come along. xo

  11. I just caught up on the news of your cycle. I’m so sorry it didn’t work this time.
    It looks like we are on the exact same cycle this month, so I’ll be following right along with you.

    The hike looks amazing! We went on a long walk over the weekend–an urban hike if you will–to get our mind off the impending doom that AF brings. Works for us, too.

    Thanks for sharing the photos!

  12. What a beautiful and healthy way to begin to heal and to find the hope and strength that we need to keep going in this process.

  13. notesfrom2moms

    fresh air is a magical thing. Your ending line is something you need to come back to. At the end of the day – and all of the days you two will figure it out.

  14. tbean

    Good for you! It is so hard for me to get my ass off the couch when I am in the bad place. But a hike outdoors is just the right thing to help move the funk around. It doesn’t lift it completely, but it re-packages it into more manageable pieces, I find. hugs

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