DIRT Dad Shawn Carrithers

Dads of Dirt: The Series

Our 5th dad is Shawn Carrithers,

“About 2 hours after my first child Luci was born, we were informed by the doctor that our daughter likely had Down Syndrome. The hits kept coming with a prolonged stay in the NICU after Luci was born, various hospital stays in the following years (heart surgery, breathing issues), and tube feeding until she was 3.

Luci is now in much, much better shape health wise. But looking back through all the hard times, the main thing that strikes me was the sadness and loss that I felt immediately after she was born. The loss for the ‘normal’ ‘life that I thought she (and I) was no longer going to get to have.

Five years later, I now realize that those feelings were a result of personal ignorance that was fed from harmful stereotypes towards people with DS. While it’s been by no means easy, it’s been so wonderful to learn about and see all the amazing things that people with DS can accomplish. I am so very happy and grateful that I have Luci in my life. Along the way, my wife and I have a second daughter (3), and tried hard not to go crazy finding some sort of family/work/personal balance.

For the past 3 or so years I’ve been a casual warm-weather road rider just trying to slow the ever-increasing dad bod conversion. I discovered smart trainers, Zwift, and DIRT last Fall. It’s been nothing short of a game-changer for me. An added health bonus is now that I am getting up a 5AM to Zwift every weekday. I’ve also cut out a lot of junk calories by not staying up to late where I would have some munchies and a few beers (my other hobby is homebrewing beer). When I started Zwifting late October at 220lb and am now at 205lb!

I look forward to continued hard work and good times with team DIRT! Cheers!”

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