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Going home



I miss these ladies so much. (Taken during our Vegas trip in March.)

Our trip to Birmingham was just wonderful – we saw many old friends; ate lots of good food & blew my diet; shopped; saw the Warhol & Cars exhibit at the Birmingham Museum of Art; drank amazing coffee at Urban Standard; visited the recently opened Avondale Brewery and got a sneak taste of a new and extremely delicious brew; took two hikes; threw a surprise party; I sat for a quick boudoir shoot; drank too much cheap white wine; hugged babies; and, finally, visited the spot of one of our very first dates.

Mr. Husband and I feel so at-home in Birmingham. I miss the city’s vibe, the good food, the long hot summers, and, most importantly, all the good people we left behind. I talk a lot about wanting to go back to Alabama and Mr. Husband constantly points out that the only city he could really work in is Huntsville – my boring hometown. Some days moving to Huntsville seems like an ok idea and other days it seems like the last place on earth I would want to live.

This weekend, while surrounded by wonderful people, Mr. Husband said he would like to move to Birmingham and commute to Huntsville to work. My heart sang. The commute is long, but honestly, not all that worse than my 45 minute commute down Hwy. 280 when I lived there. There is also a good chance he could arrange to work remotely two days a week, too. During our sad drive home last night he was intently surfing on his iPhone. “What are you reading about?” I asked, fully expecting him to launch into some mind-numbing discussion about math.

“Homes in Birmingham,” he said. My eyes started to burn.

“You mean you are seriously considering doing this? You would really commute to Huntsville and take an industry job so we can go back?”

“Yes. I miss our friends. I miss the city.”

We then discussed what I could do in Birmingham to A. be happy and B. contribute financially. I know I want to help women, specifically women dealing with infertility. Initially I had hoped to go to acupuncture school, but am starting to think that dropping 50k on a degree alone is not the best idea, especially when you have already blown 16k on failed infertility treatment!

I proposed to Mr. Husband that I could start a personal training business working with pre and post-natal women and women struggling with infertility, specifically those women with PCOS and facing a challenging weight loss battle. For me, exercise is one of the few ways I can manage the mental anguish that accompanies infertility. I feel strong and in control of my body when I’m essentially powerless over my reproductive system and hormones. I want to help other women feel this way. And then I want to help them stay fit during pregnancy and later “take back their pants” post-delivery.

We talked about the cost of getting certified to do this and the cost of starting a business in Birmingham. By the end of the discussion Mr. Husband was fully behind me, saying he believes I would be happy in this line of work and that I would finally have found a job that “keeps me moving and feeling productive.”

I have no idea if this pipe dream will actually work out, but it gives me a sense of hope for the first time in a long, long while. Living child-free is a lot less daunting when you are doing meaningful work while surrounded by people you love and who love you back. I don’t want to lose sight of this hope and this potential so today I put on my big girl pants and emailed a school in Richmond about their degree offerings. I also put together a task list to help Mr. Husband prepare for and launch an Alabama job hunt. I’m so ready for this I can taste it.



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  1. EmHart #
    July 5, 2012

    Wow, that sounds like a lovely plan. It is amusing me that while you are wanting to move back to Birmingham Alabama, I am desperate to get moved back to Birmingham England. I think your idea of personal training is a really good one. Right now I would love to work with someone who specialized in helping women struggling with infertility. There is this part of me that eats to fill the hole inside and I know that you be be someone who would understand how to work with that kind of pain. Forget the USA, move to Birmingham UK!!!

  2. July 5, 2012

    Good for you Belle! This all sounds so exciting. I’m happy for you guys!

  3. July 5, 2012

    That sounds wonderful. Sounds like a plan that will make you both very happy. And what a great idea for a personal training job!

  4. July 5, 2012

    Sounds like a wonderful plan!!! And even just having a realistic and positive plan is something to be happy about. I always feel better with something to look forward to an an outline of how to get there. 🙂

  5. July 5, 2012

    That sounds so amazing! What a wonderful way to help the IF community!

  6. July 5, 2012

    How exciting! That would be so awesome. And I love your personal training idea, especially being someone with PCOS and a challenging weight loss battle. 😉 You are such an inspiring person, Belle!

  7. July 5, 2012

    Maybe I’m emotional today, but this totally made me teary and happy for you. I love this plan, and I hope it works.

  8. July 5, 2012

    Belle, you inspire me. I’ve been struggling a lot lately and this post is a reminder that there can be good that comes from all of this. That infertility doesn’t just have to be this “dark” period, but instead can be one of growth.

    I hope everything works out for you and Mr. Husband. A plan this promising has to.

  9. July 5, 2012

    I really hope you guys get to move back. We would love to – I know that home feeling you mean. If it does work out and you are still needing and RE when you get there, Dr. Michael Steinkampf is amazing. I only got to see him for a few months before we had to move the first time, but his success rates were among the highest in the nation and he was just so freakin’ nice!

    Your trip sounds like it was lovely!

  10. July 5, 2012

    I love this idea, and that it makes you sound so hopeful and powerful. Wishing you the best!

  11. July 5, 2012

    Small world…I lived in Huntsville for 10 years! I feel the same way about ever moving back there. Whenever people ask if we would ever move back we say, it’s nice, but eh it’s Huntsville 🙂 Hope it works out for you!

  12. veetamia #
    July 6, 2012

    This post oozes with positive and dreams 🙂 Your plans sound awesome and even more wonderful is that you both are happy with them. Best of luck with all of this! I hope it works out 😉

  13. July 6, 2012

    It sounds like a wonderful dream that could be reality with a bit of hard work and focus. We’ll be cheering you on with our virtual pom poms! You should look up the Aviva Method for PCOS – after the first workshop I could feel my ovaries talking.

  14. Natalie #
    July 8, 2012

    This is so exciting Belle and something I am hoping to do should my life be child-free also! Whoop whoop!

  15. July 11, 2012

    This is really exciting! I love how you are following your dream and making an awesome plan for the 2 of you! Will you be my personal trainer over the internet?

  16. July 17, 2012

    Exciting times hope the plan comes together xx

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