Anyone who actually follows this blog knows that the last installment was posted after a fairly long hiatus. And, here once again, there has been an almost ridiculous amount of time that has passed since I sat down to type up that one. Again, my apologies!
I could take a month or so to try to explain all of the things that came near to overwhelming me in my life—the cause of these lapses. For the curious, I’ll mention the battle of all freelancers who are self-employed, spending days in the hospital with my son after he was badly injured in a car wreck, blah-blah woof woof plus a hundred other things that suck up my life, and finally the passing of my first and most enduring hero: my Dad.
Dad called me about a month before he passed, and he said that he was in a jam and needed my help. He had gradually become too ill with cancer to care for himself and Mom (who is 90), and they both now needed 24/7 care. He didn’t want to hire professionals, wanting to preserve as much money as possible for Mom for after he was gone.
To make a possibly long story short, I dropped almost everything else I was doing and hot-footed it to Titusville (an hour from my home). I took along my laptop and Wacom drawing tablet to finish illustrating a children’s book for a client (now friend) in the wee small hours after Mom and Dad were (pretty much) in bed.
24/7 is a brutally accurate description of the care requirement of the very elderly. I have jokingly (half) described it as being 12 years old again while becoming a slave. I’m not going to bother to elaborate on this… those of you reading these lines who have cared for elderly parents know! So, let’s just keep it as our own little inside joke ;)
That said, I have to say that those 3-4 weeks were truly a blessing for me. My sister came from Pennsylvania to relieve me, and Dad passed a few days after that. As grinding and sleepless as those days were, I wouldn’t have missed them for any money or reward. Dad and I had conversations that were deeply meaningful and enlightening, and I know that they wouldn’t have happened if I had not been there with him at that time.
I will miss him terribly. I catch myself thinking I can still pick up a phone to share a funny story with him, or to celebrate a career milestone. I still can’t bring myself to delete his profile picture from my smartphone (I probably never will).
I am still trying to catch up with all of the work and house chores I neglected during that time! And, after 20 or so times of thinking I should post to this blog, I finally decided today (the pressure builds, you see), that this had to be the day or I would never get it done (thereby avoiding an expansion of this recent “Jabba the Hut” size lapse).
So, on to other news! I have been toying with the idea of doing a “House Concert” tour in the near future. For those who don’t know, a “House Concert” is an intimate performance that takes place in your home that doesn’t necessarily cost you anything. You basically invite around 30 friends (20 adults need to show up), and they donate whatever they choose at the end of the performance.
I have put together a little booklet that shows step by step how to have a successful “House Concert”. It’s in .PDF format to be read in Acrobat Reader (everybody has that). Anyone who thinks they might be interested, please contact me at Arte@ArteTedesco.com and I’ll you send a copy. It’s kind of like being a concert promoter in your home (only with friends—no strangers).
Finally, I want to share something with you that literally blew me back off my chair... Jake Shimabukuro, performing Bohemian Rhapsody on a ukelele! Enjoy! https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=PB3RbO7updc
I guess that just about wraps it up for now. I will try to avoid another lapse (I am entirely as sincere as I was the last time I said that!).