Wednesday, April 9, 2014

What Goes In

To my son Tommy,

You come from a long line of plumbers. Between that and your mom's Crohn's Disease, you will probably be comfortable discussing things that others see as taboo to talk about. Yep you will be able to talk about poop and all of its accoutrement. It is a smelly nasty yucky fact of life that affects even the most cultured and refined. They just don't talk about it and like to act like it doesn't exist. We, as a rule, don't shun what is probably the most universal of topics and the great equalizer. Instead, much to other people's embarrassment, we often discuss it openly and honestly. And, from recent experience, I am here to remind you that what goes in, must come out.

Your mom and I ate dinner Monday night. You luckily ate something else a little bit earlier. About twenty minutes after eating my dinner, I realized something didn't agree with me. My stomach was doing twists and turns and decided to wrench and cramp in the worst way. I could only imagine that this is what your mom experiences with some of her symptoms. I really hope not because this was horrible. Your mother who ate the same dinner didn't show any signs...yet. She was probably thinking I was a wimp and that she deals with this type of pain day in and day out. But later that night she was on my side saying something was wrong. I half considered going to the ER for some stomach pumping for both of us, but decided to just tough it out. By the morning, after an almost completely sleepless night, my stomach had normalized enough to get you to school and me to work.

By noon yesterday, I was feeling almost myself, which was a good thing because I was informed a dinner meeting for work had been moved to that night. The problem with getting through the stomach pain, is there is still another shoe to drop. Like I said before, what goes in....

So the work dinner was uneventful, even though I was worried that the next stage would happen sooner rather than later. In fact dinner was very enjoyable, probably because I hadn't ate anything all day because of my gut. When I came home, I was dead tired but I did sit down to start to write a letter to you. Then the rumble started. Let's just say the letter got delayed and the topic got changed.

I am a big believer on experiencing most every thing life has to offer or throw at you. Bad, good, weird, normal...bring it on. But if there was ever one thing that I wish you wouldn't ever have to endure, it is the quite literal gut wrenching experiences like I had the past couple days. I think you could live your entire life without going through something like that and miss nothing. The only thing it might do is give you more compassion for your mom and your uncle and your great aunt and their medical plight. God forbid you genetically inherited Crohn's.

Sincerely with love from your dad,

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