How one test changed my life
In the space of five minutes my life changed.
I went from focusing on my long-term athletics goal to realising I have a tiny human growing inside of me in only a few minutes. This I was not ready for!
As a positive thinker I kept saying it would be fine and brushed I it off even though deep down I was freaking out. Not so much on my behalf but not knowing what my coach or family would say after dedicating so much time and money into athletics.
The responses I had from them and other fitness professionals thrilled me and helped me believe it was possible to continue my athletics pre/post natal.
Research I had done gave me so much confidence as some athletes have returned with more drive and passion to succeed for their family not just for themselves. I felt as though I needed that extra drive.
From confidence and motivation to one of my biggest lows. I cannot describe the feeling of being someone who always feels 100% to suddenly becoming bed ridden, nauseous all day and only able to eat hot chips. I must confess, for the first time I felt sympathy for those who have gone through morning sickness. I never thought it would be so bad. As sick as I felt I still managed to get myself to training 2-4 times a week because I knew it would make me happier, feel better physically and mentally, which it did most times.
This first trimester was very tough mentally, physically and emotionally. From day one of finding out, my partner Chris was already back in pre season training in France, where he plays professional rugby. I know tough life!
As far away as he was, we were inseparable on the phone which was very helpful as he knew how gutted I was about my running.
A part of me wanted to give up on my athletics career because of the responses I received from close friends and family after my latest news.
They questioned my goal, they could not understand my decision and I had no idea what to say. I can understand their concern but their frustration and disappointment made me feel as though, was that all I was to anyone; ‘an athlete’ and that was all that mattered?
I thought to myself what about who I am without athletics? I am still and always have been the driven, motivated, dedicated person. This really angered and upset me and honestly put me right off.
Life as we know it, does not always go as planned but what matters most is not losing who you are. I am a motivated, passionate and hardworking person who is determined to work through challenges that life throws at me.
Knowing who you are and your qualities regardless of where you found yourself in the world, striving to make the best of it. Like my coach always says “do the best with what you’ve got!”
11 weeks later, I sold most of my belongings and gave some to charity. I packed the basics and was ready to say goodbye to the beautiful memories, friends and family in Australia. It was time to get on the plane and embrace my new journey in France.
Of course I was scared, who the heck wouldn’t be!
The last few weeks has been full of many highs and lows. I have learned the only thing you can do is control the controllables and leave the rest up to life.
Life is a mystery! I aim at living it rather than trying to understand it.
I am dedicated to live life and accept the gift of life that comes with it. My goal now is to live healthy and have the right mindset to look after myself during this pregnancy. I have realised that all the physical and mental training I have done for my athletic career, has prepared me better for the task ahead of me. I trained hard until the day I left Australia and I have continued my training in France.
I feel really strong both mentally and physically and I am grateful for everyone who was there for me and still is. I have not lost focus of my athletics dream and there is no reason I can’t go back to what I have always dreamed of doing.
Just keep dreaming and believing and it’ll keep you moving forward.
Written by Cloë Neophytou