It was the best of times; it was the worst of times

One thing the last month has reinforced for me is the thought that I am in the right place right now, working the right job (jobs?), spending my time in the right way. Mostly that’s been reinforced because things have been so goddamn crazy, and I’ve been able to stop working at the drop of a hat and go do things what need doing – which wouldn’t be possible if I weren’t working at home. So, right place, right time! But also, who’s a girl got to blow around here so that her family can catch a fucking break?

I wonder how many new readers I just lost… and what my referrers are going to come here for now.

ANYWAY.

Right before Uncle Joe went into surgery, I started working with Wild Iris Books to put an order together of my HaldeCraft products to put into their store. There was a couple of weeks of back and forth, an order was placed, and for about three weeks now I’ve been working like a madwoman, making 179 bars of soap (about 100 regular bars, and the rest as guest soaps) and a bunch of lovely ceramics.

At the same time, Uncle Joe was in the hospital for a little under two weeks, which while a few days longer than originally quoted … was not nearly as life-threatening as his stint in Cincinnati. And I had a great time at the Indigo Girls concert, so check that off on the plus side of the column.

And then Rusty had a fall in his kitchen in Dayton, and spent a number of days alone, on the floor, dehydrating, unable to get up. I can’t tell you how my psyche curls away from that. One of my deepest fears is that someone I love will die alone and lonely. That their last thoughts might be confusion, pain, loneliness. All my family members are wonderful, gentle people, and deserve their last moments to be full of love, hand-holding, and a sense of peace. Nobody I know deserves to be found days after their death. And fortunately, Rusty was found before the worst happened, and was rushed to the hospital. Uncle Joe was well enough to be left in the care of his own self (with Tim and I – and half of Gainesville – right down the street) and Aunt Gay went up to the snow and cold in Dayton to be a patient advocate for Rusty. And just to be. It was a little touch-and-go for the first few days, but Rusty now seems to be improving in leaps and bounds and is set today to be transferred from the hospital to a rehab facility. Aunt Gay is still up there.

So last Thursday I drove Uncle Joe down to Orlando to attend the International Conference on the Fantastic. Aunt Gay did some over-the-phone magic and got me into the luncheon so that I could hear one of my favorite authors, Connie Willis, give a talk. She talked about… well, mostly about comedy, the role of comedy in hard times, Shakespeare, writing Blackout and All Clear, and the novel she’s working on now. It was both a funny and insightful talk, and I loved every minute of it.

The next day, right as I was packing up some orders to take to the post office, I found out through SFF.net that an old family friend, Mike Glicksohn, had passed away suddenly after a stroke. He was diagnosed with cancer a year or two after the last time I saw him, and being that I don’t have the money to travel to Toronto every time I want to, and with him being too ill to travel, I just … knew… then, that I wasn’t going to see him again. I don’t even really have words yet, so I’m going to leave it at that.

Saturday Hanks had a booth at a local event, where I got surprisingly sunburned. Sunday Tim and I drove back down to Orlando to get Uncle Joe. Last night Uncle Joe and I went to see the new Simon Pegg/Nick Frost movie, Paul, and it was hiiiiiiiiiiiiiilarious. But more about those things later; this is getting up to 700 words and I know nobody reads the long posts.

I’ve been writing this off and on all day, in between pouring molds and cleaning ceramics. I’m going to call it “done,” as I need to go shower some of this ceramic dust off me and go meet some friends for some social knitting. And beer, which I could kind of use! Hope everyone is having a good week.

5 Comments

  1. AnneB

    How frightening Rusty’s experience must have been, for everyone. Does he have neighbors or friends who would be able to check in daily? It might reassure everyone that he wouldn’t be alone for so long if another accident happened. I’m so glad Rusty is improving!

    I think you are absolutely right about being in the right place for you. You’re following your heart, and that’s never the wrong thing, even if it can sometimes seem that way.

  2. My eyes are tearing up about Rusty; I couldn’t handle the thought of that either. I’m glad he’s on the mend.

    I’m also glad you are in the right place, doing the right things. Not only does it give you the freedom to go where you’re needed, it gives you the strength to endure when something bad happens.

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