Thursday, May 13, 2010

Something to train for

Hey! This past week, I've really tried to concentrate on working out. In the last nine days, I've exercise seven of them! I haven't done that in a very long time. I've done a combination of Jillian Michaels 30 Day Shred, Brazil Butt Lift, Slim in 6, swimming and running/walking. I ran tonight for the first time in a LONG time and it felt pretty good. I mean, I felt like I was going to die during and immediately after, but once I recovered, I felt great. My friend and I just committed to and registered for a splash and dash that will take place in about a month. The event is a 750 meter swim and 3k (2 mile) run. Depending on how the splash and dash goes, it will be a warm up for a triathlon later this year, in August or September. I'm pretty excited about it. I've done several 5k's and thought about a triathlon, but never seriously acted upon it. My goal is just to finish, I don't care if I'm the last person to cross that line. I know I'm slow, but I just want to prove that I can finish. I really want to get into shape like I was during grad school and lose some of the weight that I've gained in recent years. On really tough days, it's difficult to remember that exercise acts as an antidepressant, so I have to keep reminding myself. There are so many benefits, it shouldn't be so hard to motivate myself to do it!

So, I just watched LOST from this week. This show is crazy. I don't even know what to say, except that they have a lot to wrap up in just a short amount of time. Does anyone else REALLY want to know what Jacob's brother's name is??? Poor kid...he might not even have a name.

It's getting pretty hot here in Texas. I'm a little worried about the summer temps. It's definitely a major downside to moving here and something I considered, since I'm not really fond of hot weather. I just figured I'd deal with it and enjoy the AC as much as possible. For the beginning of May, we've already had plenty of days at 95 degrees. Last summer, Austin had something like a record 60-some days over 100 degrees. We'll see how much hotter it gets here. Glad that my apartment has a pool where I can cool off and the AC works great.

Can't wait! Sex and the City 2 is almost upon us! Ah! I love, love, love that we get to see the girls again. I've said this before, but I feel like with the new movie it's like getting together with old friends. My new coworker is also a fan, so it looks like I have someone to see the movie with. We're going to see if there are any cool events going on with opening weekend. Less than two weeks remain!

Wednesday, May 05, 2010

Can we please be done with the funerals for awhile?

The past couple of weeks have been busy. More specifically, the last week was quite a whirlwind of shock, sadness, tiredness, love and lots of other emotions. The past three weekends, we've had football games in West Texas, so that was lots of long work days and travel. On Sunday, April 25, I was selling tickets at a game in Big Spring, TX and got a call from my mom.
1. She rarely calls me, I normally call her. 2. She knew I was working at a game at that moment. I knew she probably didn't have any good news when calling in a middle of a game. The shock was still immense. She told me that Uncle Chuck died and my heart might have skipped a beat. I didn't understand, I had just seen him a couple of months ago and he was fine. He's a really energetic guy, always busy with something and upbeat. For everything he's involved in and does, you'd never think he was 73. My parents had dinner with him and my other aunts and uncles just a week earlier and he was fine! She proceeded to tell me briefly what happened as I began crying hysterically. I had to put the phone down a couple of times to wait on customers and felt embarrassed and how I must look to the random strangers. A headache set in immediately and I finished the work day, not really remembering the details of what happened to my dad's brother.
I got the whole story on the way back to Austin and just can't believe it. A blood clot killed his intestines and then started to kill the rest of his organs and his heart was unable to compensate and he passed within about 15 hours of his initial symptoms of chills and body aches. Unbelievable.

Everything just happened so fast. I booked my flight Monday night (without second thought; it wasn't an option to not be there with my family) and was on a plane at 7:00 a.m. Tuesday. The visitation was Wednesday and Thursday, so our family was there the whole time. I know this is getting really long already, but I want to continue. Thursday was the Last Alarm ceremony with the Toledo Fire Department. It was a really nice way to pay tribute to Uncle Chuck as a retired firefighter and paramedic. Lots of retired and current firefighters were there and they all filed past the casket as one rang the bell until they all went by to pay their respects. The funeral home was packed.

Friday was the funeral, which began with bag pipes and time for everyone to pay their last respects to the body and a prayer with the family before the service began. Everyone was really emotional and touched by the music. I started to realize that this was harder than most of my grandparents' funerals b/c it was so sudden and he was healthy and not really that old. Uncle Chuck was one of my closest uncles out of all my dad's siblings and their spouses.
The funeral service was nice, a couple people read scriptures and shared some really nice memories and everyone who spoke was emotional. We sang hymns and listened to a touching sermon. After filing out of the church the bag pipes played again on the lawn and one of the tunes was Amazing Grace as they loaded the casket into the hearse. Heart-wrenching.
The final portion (excluding lunch) of the service was the processional past Fire Station #25 behind an antique fire truck. All the Toledo fire chiefs were standing outside saluting as the processional drove past. The drive concluded at the church where we enjoyed lunch and time with the extended family.
One kind of funny thing that happened was that my aunt and uncle who now live in California both thought that I was my mom. I guess it was good for me to laugh at them not knowing who I was right away rather than be highly offended that I was mistaken for someone over 60. At least they thought that I had lost weight and looked great, right? Apparently, I look just like my mom when she was my age. Yikes. Lol.
Anyway, I'm really going to miss Uncle Chuck and how he gave me a hug or two every time I saw him. Christmas is going to be really weird without him there. I feel blessed to know and be related to such a wonderful man and that he took the initiative for us becoming a closer family about 10 years ago. He touched many lives and we will always remember his stories, with the embellishments of course. My heart goes out to my aunt Bev and my dad and the other aunts and uncles who have lost two siblings in just two months.

Rachel described her grief about Uncle Chuck on her blog and it's a really good post.