Sunday, June 29, 2008

Too old for (insert activity here)

Having become a father at 39 my continued good health has always been something I've known I would have to keep up if I was to stay active with my daughter as she grew.

Well so much for that. I've been dealing with something that's never bothered me before these past few days, a bad back. For the past few days I've had pain when I did just about everything except breath. For me the sadness isn't that my body is breaking down it's that I don't have an ultra-macho reason for my back pain to brag about. No I did not injure myself executing a dead-lift at the gym nor did I hurt myself doing some ultra-mechanical upgrade on my car. It just went. And I'm hoping it has the decency to come back at some point.

Like any bad situation I have a talent for making it worse too. I decided to tackle one of the tasks my wife had decided for me that I wanted to do. One of them was to take out some of the shrubs in front of our house. These were the decorative ball ones that now, thanks to my distaste for trimming, were looking less,...ah..."ball-like". So I ventured out with every manner of yard tool I had that possessed a sharp blade. This meant my axe, hatchet, pruning shears, and for some reason my Martha Stewart edger. Doing this activity sober of course I didn't have the courage to bring what I truely wanted to remove the shrub. That being a gas can and a lit match.

So off I go, hacking away at this poor defenseless bush one limb at a time. Then, my back started to make it's distaste for yardwork known. The pain said "Sit down and relax.....NOW!". I obeyed. This continued on. So I would hack, grimace in pain, sit down, and do it again. If you could imagine how a 6' hummingbird would do yard work, this was it. It was then that two words came into my mind that put a real kink into my job,...tap root.

A tap root is a root that goes straight down from this type of bush and makes it nearly impossible for a weekend warrior gimp with a bad back like me to remove the stump. I had most of the bush off and tried to rock the stump out by standing on it and it wouldn't move an inch. So my next move is - chemicals. As it stands now it's out there and I'm going to making a trip to Lowes for something to kill the stump, tap root, and anything else growing around it. I have declared war.

But after a few days I've started to feel better. It now takes me less time after getting up from a chair to walk straight. Which really helped me out today when my daughter decided that when we're in a department store "stop!" means run away giggling. I so don't want to be the heavy when it comes to disciplining my daughter but you'd be surprised at how quickly that role materializes when your child scares the bejesus out of you by darting off in a department store.

I've read countless articles on toddlers and so has my wife. What I'm waiting for is the one that tells me when logic arrives. I tell my daughter "either sit in the cart, hold my hand, or let me hold you". Simple right? But no, she comes up with a fourth option which is "run like a maniac away from mommy and daddy". Suddenly, those freaks with their kids on leashes don't look that bad. I can't stay mad at her though. That little voice and those eyes just make you forget that you looked like a girl running in public after your 2 year old. I am too old for this.