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27 February, 2009

Pre-race Jitters

This originally posted in my private blog on February 27, 2009...

I've always wanted to be an athlete, but never had the motivation to practice or really, what it comes down to is...I didn't like to do anything that requires effort, pain, and occasional failure. Never mind the endorphins, new friends, and occasional successes!

Over the Summer I set out to loose some lbs, tone up, and tackle something new. I joined Lifetime fitness, and have been (as Cassi would say) sucked into the Vegas like vortex that is Lifetime. A few months ago I heard on the music loop at the gym that Lifetime offers an annual INDOOR TRI. I checked it out, learned that they're usually in the spring, and decided that would be my goal. An indoor tri - no winners, no losers, no finish lines, etc. Well, Eric caught the bug and decided to whoa-up me and shoot for a half-Iron man, also known as an Iron Man 70.3 In the mean time he would have to do a Sprint distance and an Olympic distance to help train. He found a spring distance in none other than Statesboro, GA (where Katie goes to school!) that fit his training schedule. Being the motivating fiance that he is, Eric challenged me to train for this race and not just in the indoor tri at the gym. Challenge taken.

Two - three months and countless hours of swimming, biking, and running, race day is here.

My nervousness. 
I am mostly afraid of the unknown. I've never raced before. I don't know what the transitions between sports are going to be like. I don't know what it's going to be like to not have my water bottle, towel or snacks. Let's be honest, I'm most nervous about changing from my swim suit to bike shorts in an unknown location (I'm praying for the locker room, but I've heard it can be, um, me and my front of A LOT of people!). I keep telling myself that it's just like our practice races just with a number pinned to my shirt....but it's not helping!

My excitement. 
It's my FIRST RACE!!! I've been training hard. I've been visualizing the finish line for two months. All my siblings will be there to cheer me on! It's a loop course, so Eric can cheer me as he laps me (haha)! I will be able to call myself not only an athlete, but a triathlete. I get to be a part of something new :)

My silly dream last night. First off, in real life, it's supposed to rain. hard. tomorrow. aah! Not helping. So in my dream they decided to re-order the race from SWIM BIKE RUN to RUN BIKE SWIM so that we could do the swim part in the rain. However, this threw off all my transitions and I ended up jumping in the pool with my bike helmet on. This added confusion only lead to messing up my swim stroke that I've been working so hard on....and I started swimming in the baby lane (between the real lane and the wall!) What a mess. I was so glad when my phone rang this morning to wake me up from this chaotic nightmare.

And with that - I'm off! Alex and Deirdre will be here in an hour to pick me up. Eric's driving down after work. I have to go pick up our race packets and I wanted to get oriented to the transition areas tonight so I can sleep a little easier. They say the first one is the hardest because of the unknowns and the transitions, but after tomorrow, I'll be an experienced triathlete! 

Let's pray that the storm moves slower or faster and doesn't effect the race. I will be SO SO SO sad :(

26 February, 2009

Engagement Party

Thank you to everyone who made our engagement party such an incredible night.  Eric and I enjoyed seeing everyone.  It was great to finally introduce so many of our friends to each other, since they heard stories of one another, but never officially met.  I know our parents were also appreciated meeting the people behind all our stories.  We look forward to many more pre-wedding celebrations with family and friends.

24 February, 2009

Prayers for Nana

This post originally appeared in my private blog on February 24, 2009

As I posted last month she has been sick for several years. She has withered away from a healthy 130-140 pound, average height, strikingly beautiful woman. These days, she lays, a mere 80 or 90 pounds in a hospital bed hooked up to feeding tubes and oxygen, wrapped in two or three blankets to stay warm. We are very, very blessed that my family can afford the incredible health care she is receiving from some of the most patient and kind nurses. However, day after day, the nurses call the family and report little to no movement or responses. The last my family could see or feel a response from her was the day after my grandfather's funeral, they could see one tear in her eye when they told her that Papa passed away.

Last night my dad sent me a Facebook message, yes a Facebook message... asking me what to do about my grandmother. The nurses think that she is not responding much to the feeding tube, and the hospital called asking if we want to replace the one she has now (I'm not sure if it's infected or broken, or if they are trying something new) or if we are ready to let her go.

As I've been reading on the USCCB's End of Life Issues both of these conditions fall in the gray area of keeping someone alive on life support vs letting them die naturally. Things like having painful stomach cancer and the feeding tube makes them vomit is an okay time to let the person die naturally. Being unable financially or being too lazy to care for elderly/sick family, is NOT a reason to let them die. So here we sit in a gray area in our faith, having to choose right from wrong; to sort through our selfish thoughts; and to discern the best life and care for someone who is unable to make their own decisions.

I have a few people I'm going to speak with today, but I'd appreciate any input, resources, or experience any of you might have. Most of all, we need your prayers. The family has turned to my dad and I to pretty much make the decision. The rest of the family is exhausted, but they are willing to respect the Church's teachings because they know it's important to me and my dad (and well, all of my immediate family).

19 February, 2009

Celebration of Life

This post originally appeared in my private blog on February 19, 2009

It's been a week since I went to Florida for my grandpa's (Papa, as we called him) funeral. It still hasn't really sunk in. I cried harder yesterday than I have all week. This Blog is more for me that anyone else. There are a few photos included just to tell the story. My cousin Paul's wife took pictures at the wake, funeral, and burial, something I never would have thought to do, but I am glad to have them now.

Despite losing "The Leader of the Band", as my dad called him, my family truly enjoyed spending time together. Ever since my family moved to Atlanta and all the cousins went to college, we really haven't seen each other. For the first time in our "adult" lives, we were able to have good conversation; catch up; celebrate marriages, engagements, and babies; and remember the family tie that binds.

Friday night was the wake. I was BLOWN away by the friends and family from past and present who came to pay their respects and/or be there to support the family. There were five or six of the wait staff from the old restaurant, some of my aunts/uncle's ex-spouses (and their families!!!), as well as some of our friends who had never even met Papa. We met Nana's brother for the first time, and Papa's nephews and their kids. It was so amazing to spend such a sad day surrounded by the love and support of our family and friends.

Saturday morning was the funeral. Here's where the best God-incidence came into play: Friday as we were driving to the funeral home, we past an area of St. Pete that looked familiar. I remembered it because my friend Ruth had worked at Sacred Heart during her ACE years just two blocks away. I remembered that Fr. John (Life Teen's, Fr. J) was the pastor there. For a second we joked about how awesome it would be if the funeral was there and he was the celebrant. Sure enough, that is exactly where and who celebrated the funeral Mass!!!!! What was truly incredible, is the way he taught the faith and taught through the funeral rituals. Most of my family is fallen away, so I just LOVED how Fr. John used this as a teachable moment. He was seriously the light of Christ during a dark day.

Saturday afternoon was the burial and luncheon. Now, anyone who knows my grandfather, knows he is a smart businessman, and loves a good deal, especially one involving real estate. Now, a few years ago he purchase a "plot" for him and my grandmother. Except its not an in-the-ground one. "It's in a condo," he always told us. Last year the cemetery built new "condos", so he sold the old ones and got two new ones, "with a third floor sunset view," he always joked. As soon as the burial (is it still called that when you go in a wall?) concluded, my brothers and uncles started joking that Papa probably got a good pre-construction price on the new plots, and made a profit in the sales of the old one. They were good jokes that the whole family appreciated and helped ease the tension and set the mood for the fun stories that would be told later at the luncheon.

Saturday night, the cousins went out to celebrate our reunion and Papa's life. Corey, one of my cousins, is a valet for a nice club....or something like he had connections to lots of clubs downtown. He hooked us up with a private room and lots and lots of liquor. Oh, did I mention when he called to order the Cuban cigars, the guy was hand rolling them? Yeah. The night was AMAZING! I haven't laughed and partied like that in a long, long time.

On the way home, reality quickly set back in. Eric and I were driving home (he was actually driving) when out of nowhere we were rear ended by a hit and run driver. We're both okay, but both really annoyed! The cops and ambulance came to examine us and write up the police report it. Fortunately, my dad and I had my deductable lowered after the last accident, and since it was a hit and run, I only have to pay half of that. I will also get a free rental car for a while too. Whew.


Today, I'm just going to dance it out.
I know God has a plan in ALL of this :)

04 February, 2009

Albert John

This originally posted on February 4, 2009 in my personal blog....

Tuesday morning my parents delivered the sad news that my grandfather, Albert John Corsetti, passed away. Is I mentioned in previous posts, he has been suffering from uncontrolled diabetes and a series of mild heart attacks. It was another small heart attack that killed him, because he was too weak to recover through all the efforts to revive him.

More later. Trying to get things together so I can head down to Florida as soon as possible; I want to be with my family.

Please continue to pray for my family during their mourning. I know God will continue to work through this.