About 1:30 am Monday I woke up for my usual middle of the night potty run. The problem was I couldn't get out of bed. The back pain was so severe I couldn't even sit up. Realizing the severity of the pain and continuing spasms my wife called 911.
Somehow the paramedics got me up and helped me walk down the stairs to the waiting gurney, loaded me into the ambulance and took me to ER. After waiting there for test results and given morphine to ease the pain, when it was time for me to get up and leave, the minute I tried to sit up, all the pain and spasms returned. I couldn't go home like this so I was taken to a rehabilitation center where I am writing now in the middle of the night.
It also became quickly apparent my trip to The Las Vegas Painting Convention, a week away, was not going to happen. After the first day here I realized I would be lucky to get home Sunday let alone drive to Vegas.
I can't even begin to say how upset, maybe even devastated, I was and am at the turn of events. All the planning and preparations for the classes I was to teach, wouldn't happen. The scheduled video of me painting wouldn't occur. The hopes for a minor new career were dashed. All because disks in my spine were flattening, between that and arthritis of the spine, they were pinching nerves in my back.
The irony was another medical event in my life, a heart attack caused by a blood clot that started in my heart, forced an early retirement at 62. That made it possible to learn much more about oil and acrylic painting and broaden my craft painting and gave me time to create new designs. I attended the Painting Convention several times where I met and have continued to go to my teacher and mentor Diane Trierweiler in Norco, CA.
It was her help and guidance that encouraged me to apply to teach my paintings and her years of experience teaching that helped me get ready to teach my classes. This week the final instructions were to be written up, the canvases prepped and packets made ready. This was hopefully the first step in a new career. I was even planning what classes to submit for next year! After this week I don't think that will happen either. If a medical condition stopped me this year, whose to say it wouldn't next year as well? Would you or anyone else take the chance?
What does the future hold? I don't know. I will continue to paint and list items to sell on Etsy. I've taken the first steps to building a web site where I can continue to show my items, chat with clients and maybe even show tutorials. However, the road to recognition is hard and the great hope was that between the classes and video I could reach a much larger audience because if I have learned anything over the past year on Etsy, finding an audience is far harder than creating something ever was! So...what will be will be.