The Bear Necessities: Loss and Reigniting Passion

Over the past month of my life, I’ve faced a lot of hardship. Much of it was caused by brash decisions on my end, but over the past 2 weeks the rest of the bad has felt like some cruel game where all the good went tumbling out from beneath me. I made choices to eat and drink myself into gaining almost 40 pounds since November of last year.

My whole life revolved around being “healthy” and working towards a better me. Recently it’s been hard to get out of bed, let alone run. I was letting myself keep me down, and at 23 that’s just not a plausible way of life. I can stay out late, drink, and eat every now and then but the regularity I pursued since the end of my marathon has brought on so much more negative and repressed feelings than the numbing I sought after. I looked in a mirror and thought “enough”. Enough of damaging myself, because what’s done is done and there is no way that I can let all my hard work go to waste.

On June 27, I lost my best friend. He was my favorite part about St. Louis and running. He loved walks and tried to run but could never really click with it. His name was Bear. I lost him sudden and quick to cancer and every day without him has felt like I was missing my arm. I had no idea how to handle losing him on top of leaving a job and having to move out of my parents house, with the onset of student loans and trouble finding a career job. 

Not even four days later, I lost my childhood dog, Chewy. Both came suddenly, but Bear was so unexpected and seeing him so miserable breaks me down because I know he wouldn’t want to see me this way. He was by my side when I was sick a year ago, but when if get low he sensed it and wouldn’t ever try to be overbearing. He loved energy, positive energy, and with his loss I just wanted to stop feeling anything. 

I never thought I could love something more than what I had lost a year ago, but everyday without him brings a sting that both breaks my heart and fuels it. 

It’s been difficult to maintain any running schedule, but I know I have it in me. I will not start a run without thinking of how much this pup impacted my life, and I will not be taking another drink until I lose 25 pounds. 

I have it in me to become stronger and find the will to succeed. It just takes one step at a time, but I know I’ll have a guardian angel by my side each step of the way. 


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