Running with a broken heart.


My eyes filled with tears as I stepped out the door to run yesterday evening.

I wiped them away and checked my appearance in the mirror.

“My eyes are so puffy” I thought to myself, “I really need to get it together”.

I took a deep breath and headed out.

Let me back up.

Allow me to explain why I this post is so very different from every other post I have written.

A week ago, I took my 14 year old cat, Max, into the vet to biopsy a large bump on the inside of his mouth.

I don’t have children, so this cat and his brother, are the closest thing that I will probably ever have to children.

They have been my everything.

They are the ones I wake up to every morning.

The ones I talk to before I go to sleep.

The ones I cry to when I have had a bad day.

The ones I laugh with.

When I received a call from the Veterinary Surgeon two days ago confirming that Max has a very common, but aggressive and deadly form of oral cancer called “squamous cell carcinoma”…

I felt the walls cave in.

My heart shattered into a million pieces and I was filled with an intense pain that I, in my 33 years on this planet, had never before felt.






In light of the millions of tragedies that occur in this world on a daily basis, and even more specifically, the events that took place in Orlando last weekend- I know that my pain and suffering can’t even begin to compare to the hurt that so many people are feeling at this very moment.

But, I have to get this out or else it will eat me alive.

I am struggling.

I am hurting.

I feel lost.

And I don’t know what to do.

In two weeks time, I will drive my best friend to the vet and lay him down to sleep for the last time.

And then he will be gone.

The fact is that after I wiped away the tears, stepped out the door and began to run yesterday, I felt better.

In that moment the pain dissipated.

I was free.

All that mattered was the road in front of me.

The road became my solace, my comfort, and my counselor.

During this dark and stormy time of my life, I will run.

I will run because right now, it is the only thing that makes sense.



Let’s connect!


46 thoughts on “Running with a broken heart.

  1. sarahdudek80 says:

    I’m so sorry to read this about your cat. I have been in this same position with our family dog. It is so incredibly difficult. It is amazing how running can help us to work through our feelings and come out better in the end. While I am sure this will continue to be a very difficult time for you, I hope that you will continue to find solace in your runs.


  2. wwwpalfitness says:

    I’m so sorry I have had this happen too many times and it is my fault as I made the mistake of besides having dogs I had a lot of hamsters and they do not live long. They can live in family colonies and a store bought one has a lifespan of 3-9 months, private ones, like mine are more like a year to four. I hand raised them all as I was very close with the moms and they did not eat them after being touched by me. With dogs in my 46 years I had one run out a door and get run over when moving at 4, his friend was shot by police as my father got pulled over and the dog was barking. my first had puppies, I kept and named him Runt, he lived to 19 and west killed bc my sister didn’t listen to me. I have been a vet assistant for 5 years, worked in a shelter and was a manager at a per store. i also was coaching and had the days and times of when they were spraying for west nile. She routinely put them out, didn’t pay attention and they would be out for hours in the sun, even a black lab. He had a stroke, had to eat and be evacuated, which I did. He was better and she let him out again and theis time he was too far gone. I blamed her and refused to go put him down which she still calls me names for her mistake. The black lab had a heart attack while let out in 90 degree heat. My girl Squirt had a manageable condition and when I moved in with her sister part of her issue was she was not fixed as she was a jack and it is dangerous to do so and she got kicked and her ribs broke and the dangerous materials that would come out of her seeped into her bloodstream and killed her. The dog in my profile pic, Scooby always gains winter weight and in October I mentioned that something was off and she did nothing. I ride a bike and he was hers. She waited until her got much worse and she put him down even though he was fine, just light for him. I had stool samples taken and there were traces of arsenic in them.. Her bf doesnt want me here, the dogs and hated the mess and he made up a cps case that had me longer viable and I am getting kicked out and he killed the one dog and the other I am trying to keep safe.


  3. vicki says:

    So sorry to read this, I know it hurts. I had to put my 13 year old fur baby down right around Christmas time… it hurt and still does, but remembering the good times puts a smile on my face. I’ll keep you in my thoughts.


  4. southvillesnail says:

    So sad for you, sending you lots of sympathy. I have had cats in my life forever and they take such a strong place in my heart. I know how hard it is when the time comes to say goodbye. Sending a virtual hug x


  5. Sandra says:

    My heart breaks for you. I also had no children, my furry four-leggeds (dogs) are my only children–they are my life. I lost three in one year (the same year my ex left me–I miss the dogs). I thought I would never ever recover. I still cry for them sometimes, but eventually the happy memories outnumbered the sorrow. Cherish every moment, breathe in the breath your sweetie breathes out–take your baby with you in your heart. Everywhere. Gain strength from the bonds of true love that you share for each other. we will all grieve with you, but will never feel the loss you will so deeply feel. Give yourself time to grieve,and remember.


  6. Em says:

    Thinking of you and sending you a hug xxx I understand how pets are family – my cat is definitely my main family member at the moment, animals give such pure, true love, your cat is such a handsome boy, xx thinking of you, Em


  7. Christine's Journey To Weight Loss! says:

    Sorry to here well to read about your cat…It is great that we always have a place were we can let everything out (running) when we are done running, we feel great that what ever the cause is it is gone. I had to put your girl(dog) down 5 yrs a go of being old. She was 14-15 yrs old, she couldn’t hear, had bad heart, couldn’t walk much. The vet said we could give her pill’s that would like riding a roller coaster one day up and one day down. She had a hard time breathing. So we said our good byes and saw her eyes close for the last time. Was it best thing to have done for her yes, but not for us. We often think of her and talk about her like she is still her. She was my daughter, my best friend.


  8. Cassie says:

    I knew what this post was going to be about before reading it and almost didn’t. My heart breaks for you. Like you, my cats will probably be the only children I will ever have and when they are hurting, I’m hurting. I feel it like any “real” mother would and would do any thing to take the pain away from them.

    Grieve the way you need to. Don’t let anyone tell you there is a right or wrong way. So often people are told to “stay strong” but it is ok to be sad. It’s ok to be mad. It’s ok to hurt and it’s ok to cry. Keep Max in your heart. Remember all the good times the two of you shared. Give him that treat he loves but it’s suppose to have.
    There is more support out there then you know. We are here for you.


    • RatherBeRunnin' says:

      And that is really what is so amazing Cassie- all of the amazing support out there. I am overwhelmed this morning with so much love and the out-pouring of support. So many people have gone through what I am going through and it makes me feel so much less alone in this. The support I have received from my family and friends is awesome, but this is over the top. Thank you so much my friend, seriously. 😘


  9. angelmurf says:

    The pain is real and whether it is your cat or your dog or your child or a parent, a broken heart is a broken heart. There is something magical and healing about running through the pain. Hugs and love to you.


  10. meesh107 says:

    I’m so sorry. I lost my dog of 10 years back in January and it still hurts some days. Spend as much of these last two weeks with your fur baby as you can, and I’m sure you will have wonderful memories!!! ❤


    • RatherBeRunnin' says:

      I definitely have so far! He is currently outside exploring the complex- Something I never let him do. It feels good to break the rules and let him do whatever he wants. Thanks for the support.


  11. MiniJ says:

    We recently had to put down our 18yo cat; the one I’d rescued on a cold Thanksgiving night when I was still in high school; the one who loved to sneak out of the house and lay for hours on the deck; the one who would burn up in front of the fireplace in her black fur unless you turned her over now and then. She wasn’t the only pet we’d had, but the one that had been there through it all. I feel your pain and grief. A good cry and a run aren’t cures, but they are steps toward new beginnings. Hugs!


  12. Metaphysicalmusings says:

    I’m so sorry about your cat. That is so sad. I’m sending you lots of good thoughts, but I know nothing I say will provide an adequate level of comfort. I think most of us have been there and can sympathize. Losing a pet is never easy, they are such wonderful members of our families. *hugs*


  13. Erin Custer says:

    I’m so sorry! I know exactly how you feel. On Monday afternoon we had to say goodbye to our family dog of 14 1/2 years. It’s hard. I cried…a lot. And I didn’t know what I was going to do. Because I was angry and sad. I felt all the same emotions. If you need someone to talk to about it send me a message! It’s so tough.


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