The holidays can be a magical time of year. For me, however, they can be so bittersweet. This year, I am remembering two close family members who have passed one recently (my grandfather passed just before Christmas last year, and my aunt passed in October). In addition, I have (mostly) unexplained infertility. The stress of my infertility doesn’t affect me in an overt way – except around the holidays. From January to November, I can embrace all the other (wonderful) aspects of my life and move toward my goals. In December, it sometimes seems like all I can feel is loss – I may never be woken by excited voices on Christmas morning, or have to come up with creative ways to hide that silly “elf-on-a-shelf.” When I remember the magic I felt as a child, I find myself grieving that I cannot pass on that magic to children of my own. Of course, I make the best of it – and every moment I can spend with my niece, Talia, eases the pain.
Before the holiday craziness yesterday, I took Wendy out for a short run. It was quiet in my neighborhood, and the snow was gently falling. My neighbors’ Christmas lights were all turned on, and I was able to be quiet with myself. I tapped into the magic that is Christmas, and my burdens were lighter. This wasn’t any sort of epic training run, but it gave me time to reflect before the day became crazy. I am so lucky for my family and friends, and for all the love in my life. I am also lucky for a few stolen moments, when I can run with my dog and remember the little things that make me happy, while letting go of the little things that drag me down.