Rob had battled some vicious cancer for the past three years. It invaded nearly his entire body, and he had a leg amputated a few months ago. He fought, and fought hard, for a long time. He ended up in the hospital, again, and the doctors gave him 2-3 days to live. He fought for another two weeks.
I, sadly, was not as close to Rob as I would have like to have been. Each of my parents are the youngest of their siblings, and I am their youngest. Naturally, this led me to being the youngest of all the cousins in my generation. Rob was 17 years old when I was born. I was never really given the chance to be around him. My family lived all over the eastern US for the first 7 years of my life. By the time we had moved to Owensboro, my generation had all gotten married and started their own families.
I truly wish I had gotten to know him better. I can only remember being with him five times; only two of those in the past seven years. The one thing I vividly remember about those five times is smiling, a lot. He's definitely one of the greatest people I've ever met and he could make anyone smile.
It seemed like everyone knew him. As I grew up, I would learn about my own teachers, who played baseball or football with him. Others I met had dated him or just generally adored him. He was just that kind of guy. I've never heard a bad word spoken about him. Monday, at the visitation and funeral, I saw several people I never would have guessed I would see there. They too were surprised that he was my cousin.
I have never laughed more at a funeral than at Rob's and I'm sure he would have it no other way. Rather than a sorrowful sadfest, it truly was a celebration of his life. Many stories were told and many laughs were had. We're all sad to see him gone, but happy that he's no longer suffering.
On Tuesday, I drove back to Louisville and went to my two classes. I hung out with friends afterward and just tried to relax. Today, I went to class at 5:30, for no apparent reason. We have a test in that class on Monday, so the professor didn't want to introduce any new material. That, I thank him for. Instead, he walked around to the various students in the class to see if we had any questions about any of the material or our projects. Neither my team nor I did, but we were unsure if he would review for the test afterward. He didn't. I sat in the classroom for 90 minutes to say, "No, no questions right now."
I left and decided to go for a run when I got home. I have some simple homework due tomorrow at 4pm and some stuff to do around my apartment, but it was a good time for a run. I decided to do week 5 day 2 again - the two 8 minute runs. It was't so bad last Friday, but having not run since, I was semi-worried. I puffed (?) my inhaler before getting ready, to allow it time to work.
I got ready and headed out.
By this time, it was nearing 7:30pm. With the days getting shorter, the sun had nearly set. Another night run, eh? Luckily, the weather was nice. Since I'm not an idiot, and I don't run on the roads, I wasn't worried about car visibility in the least. If there's one thing I am, it's observant. Some people say, "It's not you I'm worried about, it's all the others." I get that, but if I know where all the others are and where they're going, I'm safe.
The first run wasn't too bad. I had some slight issues where people walking on the sidewalks, with or without dogs, would be unaware of my existence - even if they were walking towards me. Common courtesy would be to make room for oncoming people. People walking 4-wide down a sidewalk should collapse to allow others to pass. Sadly, most people today are not courteous.
As I passed the tennis courts, several games were going on. No offense to the people playing, but I can see now why the pros are good. I haven't played more than maybe an hour, but I know - tennis is hard.
The walk came at just about the right time and I used it to breathe. I could breathe easier during the first run than normal, but walking breaths are always superior. As the last run approached, I tried to get one last good breath. The run came and I ran. With these longer runs, I'm covering more distance now than before. I have to take longer routes back to my apartment so I don't get there too early. It's new scenery, and I like it.
I run with my mouth open, which I feel is normal, but I just wanted to clarify. More than once tonight, I would be running along then suddenly feel something weird in my mouth. I've gotten into the habit of chewing gum as I run to promote keeping my mouth wet. This was not gum I was feeling. I spat it out. It happened again, but this time I felt it hit initially. I could tell it was a bug. Eww. Now, I'm not scared of bugs or anything, but I'd really prefer that they stay out of my body.
The last run was going well. Towards the end, though, I was getting tired. Getting so used to running then not being able to for a few days makes coming back rough. I did it though. I pushed myself until the end.
I got back to the apartment, showered and stepped on the scale. I hadn't weighed in a few days and I was eager to see the results. 278.8lbs. That makes for 36.8lbs lost since the end of June, while basically taking August off. There's a lot more to go, but I'll take it.
When I got home from class today, I stepped on the scale, fully dressed and carrying my backpack containing textbooks and my laptop. I wanted to see that weight. As it ends up, I weigh less now, with all that in my backpack and on my back, than I did when I started this journey. I took the backpack off and just held it in one hand. Knowing that I've lost more weight than it weighs is astonishing to me.
I'm unsure of when I'll run again. I plan on it being sooner than later, but with school getting busier with homeworks, tests, projects, and a research paper, it's hard. I'm hoping it's Friday. We'll see.
The song of the run is City and Colour - What Makes a Man. I'm continually amazed by Dallas Green's voice and musical talent in general. He could sing literally anything and it would sound so good. I hope you enjoy it!