Yesterday I wrote about running in a race in support of the Make-A-Wish Foundation in honor of my grandson who was born with a congenital heart defect. I have an update to that story. My grandson is now eight and has just started third grade this week. Yesterday he made a regularly scheduled visit to his cardiologist, where he received fairly good news, no change in treatment. Although he is smaller than most kindergardeners, he has gained three pounds this year. He is also fairly quiet. He has a twin sister that speaks for him. But yesterday he had his chance and spoke nonstop. He thanked the cardiologist and all of the other doctors in his life (He had three different surgeons.) for saving his life and “allowing him to go to school and learn things”. Otherwise, he continued, “He would be up in Heaven going go-g0, ga-ga”. That’s mortality from an eight-year-old’s perspective. His siblings laughed uncontrollably when they heard later.
Baseball and Retirement
Then, there’s Lou Piniella, who we’ve watched crying after his last game to start his sudden retirement. It is probably not the way he wanted to go out, a losing game, losing season, but caring for his sick 90-year-old mother is more important to him. Of course, he is a millionaire and could just “phone it in” and get someone else to care for his mother, but those are not his values, and the Cubs need a manager’s undivided attention.
Back to Running
OK, the Cubs are not my thing and since I now have cable TV (never had it until I retired), watching the Cardinals play baseball is one thing I enjoy. Last night, later in the game, relievers came in to support Kyle Lohse’s fine start and the game was pretty much in the win column. One of these relievers was Trever Miller, and the announcers referred to his struggles with his daughter, but did not explain. My wife had to know, so, it was off to the Internet, to research his story. It turns out that his daughter has a rare genetic defect that has no name. She has two holes in her heart, uses a feeding tube, a breathing tube, and at the age of six only weighs 36 pounds. She is the only person with this condition to live past a year of age. Her mother routinely saves her from choking on her own mucous.
Trever Miller, of course, is another millionaire who is married, has two other children, and a promising career in baseball. Like many others, the stress lead to drinking. Luckily, Trever caught it before it ruined his life and instead took up running as a substitute.
All of these thoughts converged in my head last night like a perfect storm. OK, quickly, you pick! Who do you want to be?
- the bankrupt parents of a child born with a defect, but is able to express his love for life
- older famous person, retiring on a down note, to await the inevitable fate of a loved one
- younger famous person who is struggling with the debilitating illness of a child
The answer, of course, is that you would not want to make any of these choices. Sometimes, the choices are made for you.