I’ve been away, my blog, for good reason. My beloved father died after several years of living with Alzheimer’s……what a bizarre and wretched disease. For his last two years, I traveled every month from my home in Asheville, NC to my family home in Midway, KY and pretty much lived there the last couple of months. I wanted to know Papa Joel (PJ) as much as possible while he still knew me. And, he did, till the very end. He still had his faculties about him, knew his family, some friends, said “I Love You” alot. Over the last couple of months he was deteriorating rapidly, growing weaker, but still his essence and determination were pushing through – he would still flirt with the nurses during his 10 day hospital stay and say “i love you” to me every time he saw me. We were trying to get him rehab to help with his diminishing ability to walk, but the overflowing and understaffed public institution that is the University of Kentucky medical center just couldn’t do much for him – their default was to nursing home. Having none of that, we set up home health care and took him home to Midway. He was so happy to be there, showed some improvement, but after 5 days, in the wee hours of the morning on June 3rd, he read a page of Harry Potter (his constant companion for the last year), told the nurse to turn out the light, “he was ready to go to sleep” and he did, peacefully. He saw the road diverge, and took the one less traveled. To not linger more, and suffer more, and hang on expecting western medicine to prop him up. He has now joined us in our hearts, where he lives and guides, and is with me always. Over 600 people showed up over the two days we celebrated the life of this extraordinary man, this generous man who gave to his community, his beloved Kentucky, through his political activism, he and my Mom feeding over 20,000 people through the years at their Kentucky home, his free and open sharing as a physicist, a woodworker, as a human being. He loved the world, loved people, and rode out on a full moon, lunar eclipse and Transit of Venus into the Unfinished Universe. Welcome, PJ, welcome to one love.
Good things this way come – so very much excitement around the accelerator and it’s evolution. Regional economic development group included us on grant, invited to speak on panel for accelerators at Gov’s statewide entrepreneurship summit in AVL this fall, invited to Silicon Valley for Global Innovation Summit in July and am part of multi-media project on Women of Appalachia doing badass stuff. Sweet couple following me around with cameras, to boring meetings for now, but I take them to Kentucky soon and that will not be boring! Symbiosis happening with Mycelium School and many others as we develop a pathway of support for socents in Appalachia. Reaching out to many people and organizations, even some I preconceived notions that I didn’t like and found I was wrong wrong – being less stubborn. As PJ would say, “be helpful to people, even ones you think you don’t like, you never know how or when they may be helpful.”
And on a final note, I have intentionally not promoted my blog to grow followers cause I wanted it for my own thoughts for awhile. But I’m ready to get it out there now, to ask my friends and kindly strangers from around the world to help grow this sweet accelerator to help the land economies of Appalachia, and well….anywhere that people live off the land! 🙂