My wife’s steps forward are short, shaky and unstable. The mud under her bare feet slips through her glittered painted toes, as roots and rocks pierce her feet as the cold air turns her heavy breathing breath into a cloud of smoke. Her once on track trail has now lead to murky terrain and unbearable conditions. She walks towards her Physique and Figure shows on both October 15th & 22nd in the same direction as before, but this time with her 240lb husband across her back and her son, Lincoln, holding her right hand. “I am doing this for you baby, for Lincoln, for our family…. I am walking on stage for us”. Jessica said to me as she held my hand in the hospital. I smiled, drugged up and half coherent as my heart rate on the machine next to me spiked. Beat, beat, beat my heart pounded, as I was so happy and proud that the journey we have had taken part on as a family 20 weeks ago would be finished, will be fulfilled and achieved. She squeezed my hand and I squeezed back, as both our eyes began to tear. “We are a team,” I spoke softly as tubes sewed in and out of my body like an old teddy bear being stitched back to life. That unspoken understatement I always talk about between athletes was achieved this moment. Yes words were spoke, but the reasons and the understanding were already reasoned and understood. Just that look between two teammates spoke a million words, typed in ink and posted in blood, sent from one heart to the next. My wife, Jessica, is carrying our entire family on stage in 3 days, and I have never been more proud of her. She is my rock, my sail, my entire being.
Some might say, “Why after everything that happened would Jess continue to compete in these shows!?” The answer is easy, teamwork. Teamwork is an overlooked tool used to succeed in sports and in life. Programing, technique, college degrees, certs and even experience is not enough. Teamwork combines all traits of success together as a well rounded and structurally sound machine tackling goals, reaching for stars, and dreams coming to fruition. My wife and I have been able to grow together while growing our athletic careers, company, family, and faith all with teamwork. I urge you to find that someone and build upon a working relationship based on teamwork and love. I demand that you and your partner become one in everything you do. Falling together and facing tough times together. Enjoying the great times filled with magical adventures and never forgetting nights of laughs and lust. A melting pot of one filled with two people. Two souls that can team up and conquer anything in their way, and if one falls the other one is there to pick up. Jessica has picked me up. Who will you pick up? Or will you be the one like me being picked up?
We can all learn from Jessica from many different ways, but one of the most striking lessons is the self-discipline constructed to carry on under hard times and ruthless terrain. It’s hard enough to stay disciplined and motivated when times are going good, but to stay on track, (even if the track has split a new direction and the tall weeds make it hard to see the path before you) is the true sign of strength. I will be a stronger and more determined person just by witnessing Jessica fight for not just one person, but her entire family resting on her back. Not just our family, but our beloved fans and supporters. Hardship can bring strength we never knew we had, and I think Jess is finding this out first hand. Not saying she nor I haven’t gone through hardship, but hardship like we experienced and have been experiencing the last few weeks is something else, something new and dark. The dagger cut the skin extra deep on this one. But that doesn’t stop my wife from pursuing our goal of walking on stage. God has made Jessica even stronger, and I didn’t know that was possible.
The dieting, the cardio, the hard training, the posing seminars, the posing practice, the mood swings, the giant pumps, the insecure days, the ups, and the downs will not go to waste because of my wife. The last 20 weeks of training for the shows for you the reader, you my athlete, you my family… will soon be shown in 3 days. Teamwork, that’s what this blog is about. I love you baby.
Carry on Jess, carry on…