Fatherhood: Week 22-Injured
As I leaned down to pick up my son, I felt something pull in my lower back.
I threw my back out. I felt like a bad comedy movie cliche, a joke that would get cheap laughs in a late 90s Jack Lemmon movie.
I was in too much pain to laugh. My son, lying on the floor and growing hungrier by the minute, did not find the situation funny either. My wife, laboring for another Saturday, had just headed out. I frantically called and texted, only for her to receive my messages just as she arrived to work. Embarrassment joined helplessness and agony to my growing list of feelings at that moment.
I somehow managed to move Beckett to his nursery to change his diaper. My wife arrived home with a bottle of off-brand Aleve, some heating pads, and a bottle of my favorite soda: Cherry Coke Zero. She took over child-rearing as I tended to my injury. After some tears and discussion, I realized I would have to rest as this Saturday suddenly became "Take Your Son To Work" day for my wife. Seemed fitting that I would watch some bad 90's movies to punish myself even further (looking at you Congo and Phenomenon).
My resourceful spouse enlisted friends and family to watch Beckett the next day while she put the finishing touches on her monumental work project. As I lay in my bedroom, I listened helplessly as friends kindly performed my fatherly duties. I was called upon for help putting Beckett down to sleep, wishing I could just do it myself instead. Then I would move and realize anew that nothing like that would be happening in the immediate future.
My mind started to wander. I am approaching 40 years of age. For as long as I could remember, my mother, a nurse, was always in pain. She severely injured her back and neck while lifting a patient. In addition, she was diagnosed with fibromyalgia. She suffered a lot getting things done for our family, often smiling through the pain she endured. Was my mom's diagnosis hereditary? Was I doomed to suffer fatherhood in pain like my mother endured parenting? Would my wife have to do the heavy lifting, both in the literal and metaphorical sense?
I realized I have not seen a doctor in years. I am currently training for a half-marathon, but since my son was born, I have grown increasingly more ignorant of my health. Is it finally time to get over my phobia of physicians and flu shots?
Monday morning I woke up feeling much better. I am slowly getting around and am able to carry Beckett around the house. I am feeling like I could resume my race training this weekend.
I might even make a doctor appointment for myself soon. I need to be around for a while