Its 5:30 am and I am hosing human turds onto a California State highway. This is not the worst part of my morning. Let me tell you about Wednesday. This story is the birth of a warrior. I will tell it the only way I know how, through my eyes as a witness to something much more impressive than my shitty experience. I am sitting here still in awe of how this 5 hours of my life went.
The story starts at 12:38 am when I woke up coughing uncontrollably. This may not alarm most people, but for me and my history of asthma and allergies, this can be quite alarming. You see my best reference as to how asthma feels is trying to breathe through one of those baby coffee stir straws when you are used to breathing through a paper towel tube. Along with the struggle of trying to force way more air into this micro sized hole, is an unforgettable wheezing sound, and an elevating heart rate. Following this usually comes the mini freak out in your head, that screams “I cannot breathe, I am going to die.” All the while you sprinkle in bouts of coughing that do nothing but irritate your breathing passages even more, and make that damn coffee stirrer seemingly smaller. To make it worse, some sort of allergic thing was going on making me itchy and a tad sneezy as well. Through years and years of dealing with dumb shit like this growing up, I have a pretty good idea of how to deal with such situations. I just need to be calm and relax, basically mind tell your body everything is fine, this can go 2 ways, get better or way worse. I always choose the better and its worked every time. In this case, I took my coughing, wheezy, sneezy ass out of the room, where my 3 girls lay asleep (well as far as I could tell). I went downstairs and just sat there, it had to have taken me over an hour (about 2am) to finally calm myself down to where I finally feel asleep, labored breathing and all.
I woke up about 3:35 a little later than usual to get ready to go to the gym. I had my coffee brewing and I went into the bathroom to freshen up, take a leak, and brush my teeth, it was then I got a knock at the door. My wife was awake and was holding our 2 year old. She had woken up in her usual scream filled, half awake frenzy. This has been going on for a few months randomly. She doesn’t want anything but her mother and to nurse. I have tried to settle her down many times to zero avail. Nursing is the key to the whole equation. Nursing is the Ace in the hole, it always works. Except tonight. We as a team decided that our daughter was finished nursing. It was time to wean her. Nursing her had become too much on my wife, and we believed that it was just time for her to move on. God Bless my wife, she nursed her for 2 whole years, and 5 months of that she was nursing our youngest and the previous 9 months to that was pregnant with our youngest. That right there my friend is “Incredible.” The capacity a woman’s body is breathtaking. Back to the weaning. Nursing is the lifeline to the mother. This is where all of their nutrients come from. Breastmilk changes as the baby ages, breastmilk changes from male babies to female babies. It truly is Amazing. That is the last true connection that a baby has to mom. This is the first thing they learn, and it arguably is the most important thing in their life, and their greatest source of comfort. Tonight/this morning, it is over………
We sat there with my daughter for 30 minutes or so. She first was tiredly asking for milk. Then she became a little fussier about her inquiry. Then it became a scream, then the scream changed tones and become totally frantic. My wife, God Bless her was calm the whole time, and just kept telling her that she was done nursing. Then the asking became very sad, almost a pleading or weeping, and finally it stopped. I was torn apart, my wife was beside herself as well. This was an incredibly tough moment. We were watching our 1st born go through arguably the greatest crisis she could not even imagine yet. What we understand is that this time will pass and she will be just fine. All she knows is this. This is always there for her to calm her nerves, to put her to sleep, to comfort her. Now, it is gone. My wife then passed her to me as she went and pumped. She was pumping some milk to give her from the bottle. At night we decided to give her milk from a bottle, it was the nursing that we chose to end. While I held my heartbroken daughter, I was more than welled up with tears. When the milk was ready we tried to give it to her, and she didn’t want it at first. Eventually my wife asked her to go upstairs with her to go back to bed. What I saw next was breathtaking. My daughter slinked down to the floor off my lap, grabbed her kitty cat in one arm, and her bottle full of mama’s milk in the other hand, and started walking towards the stairs with no tears. It was straight out of a movie, I felt like their should have been some sort of heroic music playing in the background. She literally just went through possibly the worst experience of her life, and now was walking to the stairs like the warrior she is. I am sitting on the couch wheezing, in an ocean of my own tears, gushing with pride, and awe. I couldn’t believe the gravity of what just went down. I am still spinning writing this entry. So my wife and daughter went back upstairs to bed. Now its 4:32. Seriously not even 5am and this has been a day.
I then got a text message from some of our athletes at the gym, I was late. 4:30 is when a few of us work out, in order to get it done before the day starts. I head up there and make it just before 5. As I pull up, I smell a terrible smell. Outside the gym, there is what appears to be a large amount of human poop and toilet paper and clearly a lot of liquid had been there at one time. I have had the pleasure of being present at the release of a poop tank on a RV, and I am almost positive Uncle Eddie just let it go here last night. The placement of the turd mountain just happened to be right outside of the gym gate conveniently. We send athletes on runs all day, and the first place all of these smashed turds are gonna be is all over our yard. This is a parking lot outside the gym, for those of you that don’t know DEUCE. We call this the yard and it is as Epic as it could be. So I headed out there with a hose and started attempting to play the water gun game and roll all the proverbial logs out on to Lincoln, which is a well traveled California State Highway 1. By about 5:40 I had more or less cleared the foulest smelling turd salad you could imagine off the road, at least all that was visible. All the while I am standing here rolling someone else’s turds along the street thinking about the birth of a warrior that I had witness an hour before. I cannot put into words the wonder, and amazement that I feel. I feel like it could only be expressed in a color that was painted in the sky during a sunset. I have never been more awestruck and more proud. Having a child struggle is truly a eye-opening experience. Its crazy how you feel for them. It’s almost painful.
Sorry for the long journey to the heart of the story. But I believe the context drives home the point. No matter how rough my day started out. It doesn’t pale in comparison to the day my 2 year old is having. And she marched out of that room like a seasoned warrior, victorious in her struggles. I saw her later that morning and she was just fine. There were no remnants of the worst thing ever. There was no sadness, no weepiness. She was strong and vibrant. I am forever thankful for the lessons that I get from my girls. Todays lesson. Go about your business, and get it done. Everyone has a struggle, and most of them are probably harder than yours. Win your battle and keep your head high. Forever Grateful to this little girl. She ignites my world.