Friday, May 27, 2011

Rest In Peace Dad

My father, Frank Joseph Marinucci, passed away this morning.  This is one of the few posts in this blog not related to my journey... though it may have a profound impact on gettting me back on my path.  I simply wanted to share a few words about my dad.

My dad went in to the hospital with a heart attack two weeks ago.  The following Monday, roughly 11 days ago, I sat in my office at work wondering if I should fly to Florida to be near him, to help him, and to spend some time trying to convince him that he should live closer to family, whether that be mine, my sisters', or my brother's.  I told a friend that I needed some kind of sign, then she left my office.  Seconds later my phone rang and my father said, "Anthony, can you come down here (to Florida)?".  Given the highly unusual request from my dad and the fact that it happened seconds after asking for a sign, I figured that it wasn't going to get any clearer than that.  So, I got online, found the best flight I could, packed, slept three hours, drove to Denver, and boarded a flight a few hours later.  I will never regret that decision. 

When I arrived, my dad looked up at me and said, "Do I know you?".  I laughed and told him it was his son.  Probably a little bit of the drugs talking, but I think a lot of it was that the pictures I had sent recently did not do my weight-loss any justice.  My dad spent the next week telling that story to anyone who would listen and also bragging about how his son had lost 115 pounds.  He kept telling me that he really wasn't playing when he said he didn't know who I was.  I assured him that I could see that he had no clue in his eyes.  I enjoyed how proud he was of me.

We spent the last week doing what my father and I have always done best... talking sports and food.  My dad was a foodie.  Even more than I. It's where I got it from.  He was a great cook.  Another thing I took from him... though he was better and spent more time trying different things.  Throughout the week, he would ask me if I had tried different dishes and then tell me the way to make them if I had not.  We talked baseball, basketball, and hockey as we watched the local Rays, Heat, and Lightning play.  Despite any differences we may have had over the years, we always had a common ground in food and sports.

We talked about my blog and I read him various posts, including the one about me beating him in hoops and how he always brought it up.  He never had a computer or the internet, so this was the only time he got to hear the blog.  He loved it and repeatedly told me I should submit my stories to a magazine.  He was proud of that too.

Whenever I called my dad over the last year, I got the sense that he was tired and close to giving up the fight.  He had various health issues and his overall health had deteriorated rapidly over the last two years.  But, when I was sitting in that hospital room talking to him, I had a sense that he had an emotional lift from me being there and that maybe he remembered why he should keep fighting.  Well, his struggles continued when he got home and that lift subsided a little bit each day.  Part of me thinks he wanted to have this last week with me before moving on.  Maybe that's silly.  But, it felt kind of like he was saying goodbye to me.  He thanked me for making the trip... repeatedly.  He thanked me for everything as I cleaned, cooked, and helped him dress.  He reminisced about anything and everything.  He played a Josh Grobin song about a father and son while we drove over the Sunshine Skyway bridge and told me he always thought of me when he heard it.  Again, if you knew my father, this was not his typical behavior. 

This morning I woke up to a piercing alarm on his external defribillator.  I rushed to his side and tried to perform CPR as the paramedics made their way to his house.  It was already too late.  I had talked to him at 6:30 AM and helped move him to a comfortable position on the couch.  The alarm went off around 45 minutes later.  I hope that he found peace in that last 45 minutes and I hope that he passed without any pain. 

I will tell you one thing as I close.  Never hang on to grudges.  Don't ever let your anger consume you.  You will never regret forgiving a person... at least I never have.  As hard as this was to take time away from my family and work, I will never regret spending the last ten days of my dad's life with him.  I love you dad.  I will miss you.

Frank Joseph Marinucci, 12/16/1940 - 5/27/2011

Monday, May 23, 2011

Where's The Elevator?

Miss me yet?  My dad not having internet connectivity at his place is killing me and putting a dent in my blogging.

Last week, while visiting my dad in the hospital, I walked around the corner to see a group of people that was way too large to fit in to the elevator... and by large I mean the number of people and not the size of the people... I have not become quite that pompous about my weight loss!  Since I had already made a point of climbing the stairs when using the parking garage, I decided that I would do the same inside of the hospital.  So, I turned to a nurse who worked there and asked her where the stairs were.  She looked at me blankly, completely confused.  Eventually, she seemed to guess and point me around the corner.  The stairs were not there.  She clearly hadn't ever used the stairs before.

So, as I was walking down the hall, I turned to another nurse and asked again.  She looked at me like I was an idiot and responded, "Why, do you not like to use the elevator?".  I laughed and said elevators were fine but I wanted to use the stairs.  Luckily, she did know where they were... though she seemed perplexed at why I would want to use them over the elevator.

Now, I realize that people tend to opt for the elevator over the stairs in most circumstances.  But, I kind of thought that in a hospital, the staff might fully understand the benefits of taking the stairs.  While they may not use them either, I didn't expect that my request would be met with such skepticism, confusion, and slight irritation. 

When I was talking to my dad about the parking garage being full, he told me that he liked to go up higher where it was empty and then park close to the elevator.  He bragged that he did the same when he went to the airport.  My rather snide comment was that I was proud of him but maybe that's why he was in the hospital with a heart attack.  Now, don't be upset, my dad and I can joke that way.  But, I was slightly serious.  Here's to taking the stairs more often...

I need to find a scale...

Tuesday, May 17, 2011


Down 3.8 pounds.  I am out of town so this will be my last weigh-in for some time.  But, I will try to keep blogging.  Given my current stress over my dad's health, this was a good start and welcome news at 3:00 AM this morning when I awoke. 

Birthday Challenge, Day 1 - (3.8), Overall - (3.8), Pounds To Go - 15.8

Monday, May 16, 2011


There it is.  I have been so disappointed in myself over the last few days that I haven't even had the heart to post my weight.  After writing the words "Better..." on Wednesday, I have started a slide that included way too much food at a baseball game and then a weekend of sulking about it that included Pass Key, margaritas, nachos, and Chinese food. 

I am in a serious funk.  I want to offer up the excuses about stress from my new job, my dad's recent health concerns, and other things.  But, those are just bullshit excuses!  This funk started when I fell off of P90X when I was sick.  I haven't done well about all of the stuff I said I would change... like soda, chocolate, and popcorn.  I continue to exercise, which might be my only saving grace. 

The last couple of times I crossed over 210, I felt like they were temporary blips that would be gone with just a couple of days of focus.  But, for some reason, this feels different.  This feels like a permanent change to my body and I can see and feel it.  I ate so much salt at the baseball game on Thursday that I felt like crap for two days.  Today, I can feel my stomach protruding again.

I know I have talked about Phase 3 before and failed.  Well, it's time to try again.  Maybe I need a different name.  But, I do know that I need a new mini-goal.  Since my birthday is exactly three months away, that is the end date for my newest challenge.  I weight 212.6 today.  My goal is still 193.  So, I need to lose 19.6 pounds in 92 days.  This will be called my Birthday Challenge.  No more whining... time to stop this self-loathing and move forward. 

Tuesday, May 10, 2011


Uhhh, yeah, I don't think I am going to get to 193 in four weeks...

Monday, May 9, 2011


Up 2.4 pounds after a weekend of Lori and I enabling each other.  I have been a little disappointed at myself over the last few months.  But, today is the first time in awhile that I remember being truly disgusted in myself.  Jerk.  Tonight, I start P90X over again and try to get busy once again.

Sunday, May 8, 2011


I need to stay in Pueblo.  I do much worse when I leave town.  Up .4 pounds... could have been worse. 

Saturday, May 7, 2011


LOL!  I had chicken wings for lunch and dinner and still lost .6 pounds.  Weird...

Friday, May 6, 2011


Started yesterday off down a pound and feeling good.  And then, that small part of me that is Spanish from my beautiful grandmother decided that I needed to celebrate Cinco De Mayo despite the fact that it's not actually a Spanish holiday. 

So, while out on store visits in Pueblo and focus groups last night in Colorado Springs, I indulged at Mi Pueblito... a Mexican restaurant that I just recently found out was now owned by an old friend... and Chik-Fil-A.  Somewhere in my celebration, I found two pounds.

Wednesday, May 4, 2011


Wow!  So disappointed in my weight yesterday that I even forgot to post it.  I think that is a first... other than the times when I couldn't.  Obviously, since today is the same, I don't feel much differently this morning.

Monday, May 2, 2011


I had a really nice weekend which is the only thing that keeps me from being really miserable when typing that weight.  Back to P90X this evening.

Sunday, May 1, 2011