Chicago Cubs: Ryan Dempster and Trever Miller's Inspiring Father Stories

Jason S. Parini@@JasonPariniBRCorrespondent IIFebruary 24, 2012

NEW YORK - JULY 14: Ryan Dempster of the Chicago Cubs with son on the field during the 2008 MLB All-Star State Farm Home Run Derby at Yankee Stadium on July 14, 2008 in the Bronx borough of New York City.  (Photo by Jim McIsaac/Getty Images)
Jim McIsaac/Getty Images

According to Carrie Muskat of MLB.comChicago Cubs starting pitcher Ryan Dempster and Trever Miller recently realized they have more in common than just their uniforms.  When the two began playing catch in warm-ups the other day, neither man really knew much about the other.  Immediately, they began asking about each other's personal backgrounds.  

Both Cubs pitchers?  Obviously.  

Have three kids?  Interesting.  

Both have a daughter with a rare chromosome disorder?  Say what?!

Dempster, who is entering his eighth season in the blue pinstripes, has a daughter with 22q11.2, also known as DiGeorge syndrome, a rare chromosome disorder.  Much to his surprise, he isn't the only Cub dealing with a situation of that nature.  

Trever Miller, still contending for a position with his 10th team, has a daughter with a disorder so rare that it doesn't even have a name.  Even more amazing is that she is the only child in U.S. history to live past a year of age.  Grace turns eight years old in June.

Grace Miller almost died in the stands during the 2008 ALCS.  The poor child was literally choking on her own mucus.  That is, until her mother performed an emergency trachea change.  Grace has also been dealing with kidney stones.  Her strength has caused Dad to give her a quite unique...but deserving nickname—"Nails."   

Dempster's daughter Riley also has had her share of problems.  For her first eighteen months of life, she could not be submersed in water.  Fortunately for her, that has changed, and according to Muskat "she spends three to four hours swimming."

Words cannot put into perspective the difficulty that these men must be going through.  Regardless of the success that either man may experience or the dreams that may have come to fruition on the baseball diamond, I'm sure either would give it all away in a heartbeat, just to give the good health of their daughters.  

We can all learn a lesson from this situation.  

Dream big, go for your goals...but keep in mind, it's not always your triumphs that define your life.  

It's how you handle the struggles.