September 10, 2010
The Everett family awoke to the sultry scents of a misty morning appropriate for coastal peninsulas along the Pacific Ocean. Eager to be outside we finished breakfast and had our feet in the supple and velvety white sand before the clock struck 8am. This weekend and this place hold special meaning for us; spending half of our six anniversaries eating lip-smacking food, taking walks on the beach and through town, and enjoying our vitality with the fun challenge of the Pacific Grove Triathlon. Now, the significance multiplied with our first out of state trip as a family of three. Hortense carried Lola in the Ergo Baby while we scanned the beach, the Pacific, and Pebble Beach’s Golf splendor. Content. We muse over previous trips and daydream about future trips. Sand Castles in the sky we’re determined to bring down to the beach. It’s one of those walks that you want to linger, alas; the little one squirms from her slumber and asks for nourishment. Hortense nurses on the mostly empty seashore save for a few surfers and I remember delighting immense pleasure with this family moment.
Flipping through the local channels avoiding commercials while watching day time television in a frugal attempt to find anything watchable sums up the rest of my day; atrocious. One of my favorite bike rides, a picturesque jaunt along Highway 1 with neck careening seaside vistas (the race course for the triathlon) kept getting pushed back hour by hour why I lay in a dark room on a messy bed watching the horror that is day time TV. In total denial. The only time I moved were the frequent sprees to the bathroom. Still, I ignored my ailment with daft certainty. To acknowledge it and give it a name means excepting defeat. I’ll be better any minute now. Hortense comes back from an errand and I crumble; I acknowledge the enemy and give it a name!? “I feel like dog$%*#, I think I have food poisoning or something.” The mutterings from my lips make me feel worse.
It’s only plainly obvious that my race is over and unless David thumps Goliath in my stomach, I won’t even be able to suit up. I let that thought flush, however. Trusting your body to heal and giving it sometime (about 8 hours!) can have one feeling that spring in their step in no time. While I continued all through the night…not changing Lola’s diaper, but my own; blind optimism gave me a little spring in my step as I set a course record from the bed to the toilet. I think I can race!
September 11 (Happy Anniversary Honey!)
I’m eating bananas like a starved monkey that’s been on a caloric restriction diet of cow feed its whole life. Having my appetite back is a sure sign of my health returning. We are Go for operation ‘try not to crap your swimsuit while racing with anomalous rumblings in the belly’. I succeed. Mission accomplished with an 11th place finish. It’s a little disappointing at first, but now, with hindsight of 3 more days of anomalous rumblings in the stomach…I’m amazed at the body’s ability to overcome. There is something about a triathlon, akin to the ‘fight or flight response’ and giving it a dose of healthy training that leaves you in awe sometimes…given the circumstances, it was a great race for me.
Being with my wife and daughter at Lover’s Point on the Pacific Ocean on my anniversary made the day savory. Holding Lola, later that day while she cued and smiled humbled me with a wide smile. There can be few greater treats in this world than holding your daughter and seeing her joy.
I’m thankful for my loving and supportive wife whose words of encouragement can put a superhero’s cape on my back. I’m only half the man without her. Even though the night on the town got substituted with me lurking around our Pacific Gardens Inn room searching for energy that would not return for several days, we lit a fire and sat down to dinner…Here’s to many returns to this wonderful day in September with you by my side.