Put your money where my mouth is
I'm sitting here today during possibly the darkest hours of my life.
First, let me introduce myself. My name is Scott Aruda and I am a father, a husband, a brother, and a friend to many. Mostly I identify myself as a trumpet player/musician.
Even as I write that, I am getting choked up because of what I am currently facing. I come from a musical family, 6th of 8 children so music has always and will always be a major part of my life. I started playing trumpet at the age of 3 and a half or 4 (no one is really sure)
Pretty much as far back as I can remember. Playing the trumpet always felt as natural as breathing to me and because of that, I excelled at a rapid rate. I remember bringing my trumpet to kindergarden for show and tell and playing the theme from happy days, (the original theme which was Rock Around the Clock.)
Even by the young age of 5, I knew that this was my calling and there was never any doubt that I would play for the rest of my life. Through out my school years, with lots of practice, I got better and better and by 6th grade I was playing lead trumpet in the High School band. I received all kinds of alcolades and by the time I was in 9th grade, I was being hired as a ringer to play lead trumpet in several of the local college's jazz bands. As a senior in High School, I beat out over 7000 other trumpet players and was selected to play lead trumpet for the Mcdonald's All American jazz band. I also recieved full scholarships to several colleges
Since then, I've toured the world, I've played with a former President, the very rich, the very famous, the poor, the secluded. I've played and raised money for more benefits than I can count, but I never thought someday I was going to need a fund raising campaign for myself.
I am so grateful that I've had such a great career and I've been able to touch a lot of people with my playing. I only say this because people have told me. I think throughout my career, hearing things like that made all the practicing worth while and then some.
I have a beautiful wife and an amazing 2 year old son who loves when his daddy plays for him. He even started to play himself about 2 months ago!
How cool is THAT?!
Okay, here's how I've come to gofundme.
Over the last two years, I've been having symptoms of diabetes. Both fear and lack of insurance kept me from
getting to the doctors office. Rapidly my gums have receded above the enamel of my teeth. In the last year I have lost about 9 teeth! Luckily the tooth loss only effected my eating habbits as they were mostly in the back. Since January this year, I've lost 3 in the front, most recently, last week, I lost one of my two front teeth on the top. That tooth is a real game changer as far as playing goes. That is where the mouthpiece sits and all the range and sound comes from. As soon as this happened, I knew that I wouldnt be able to play. I was sitting with my wife and son at the time and I started to break down. My son asked my for a sip of my water and my hand was shaking too much to hold the bottle to his mouth. My family and close friends have been so supportive and I love them for that. But until I can play my trumpet again, I will feel like a shell of my former self. I just want to be able to make a living and I really dont know how to do (or can imagine doing) anything else!
After a lot of research and recommendations, (I'll spare you the gory details about bone grafts and implants)
I need to raise 40k plus to get the proper medical treatment to sustain the mouth pressure of playing a trumpet. Especially the way I play.
People that know me can testify to that.
Things around our houshold have been pretty intense this past week. Mostly because I'm in a panic and my moods have been depressed , hopeful, frustrated, and emotionally exhausted. My baby boy can sense that there's something wrong on top of the fact that we just moved on the first of July. The timing couldnt have been worse.
I promise that I will right the ship and do whatever it takes to get back to where I need to be, but I desperately need your help.
Whether it's a small or large donation or a prayer sent in my behalf, I appreciate your time and generosity and I hope to be playing again very soon. Thank you
I have good news and bad news regarding my condition and the treatment thereof. First, let me
thank you all once again for the support, not only monetarily but emotionally, that you have shown over the last three weeks. I owe you all so much for turning the situation I'm in, from a story of tradgic consequences to one of hope . This whole experience has changed me so much already. For those of you that know me, I'm sure you know that sarcasm was one of my favorite forms of comic relief, and now...it still is. Nevermind, I forgot where I was going with that. ;) I guess what I'm trying to say is that you've restored my faith in humanity. Don't get me wrong, I still hate people, just not YOU people. ;)
As you might realize, my situation isn't about to change overnight and, according to the last dentist I saw, I have a long difficult road ahead of me. The support and encouragement I've gotten over the last few weeks has made me believe not only in the power of this community but in myself, so I thank you a million times over for that.
I started the process 2 weeks ago which was scary to say the least. Some of you might remember that I had a dental "mishap" (malpractice) about 15 years ago when a certain dentist was in a rush and injected irrigate (bleach) into the tissue around my nasal cavity.
My face swelled up so much that it caused damage to the nerve that controls the right corner of my mouth.
Half of my face was paralysed for over two months, I thought I would never play again, but with diligent practice, sheer will, and determination, I got myself back. Unfortunately, my situation now is going to take months to overcome. I'm going to need all the help and encouragement I can get. I know I can do it!
You all have given me a new beginning and I owe you all so much. I've been thinking about how I can repay everyone that has donated so generously and has said such amazing and flattering things to me, and it came to me. Which is another reason why I've been dragging my feet on this particular update. It involves an intense committment on my part and putting it in writing and clicking on "post" pretty much seals the deal, so here goes... (deep breath)
In order for me to have to best chance for success with the medical procedures ahead of me, I am going to have to transform my current unhealthy state to one consistant of a professional athlete. I am pledging to my family, my friends and to the anonymous donors
that starting right now at this very moment I am adopting a lifestyle of good health and to be less vague, I will come up with a plan for you to follow my transformation in the coming months. I dont want anybody to feel like their donation was taken for granted or that it was given in vain so the only way I will feel comfortable with all the love and support sent in my behalf is to give back myself. You are about to witness an extreme lifestyle change and I hope you will support and encourage me along the way because
I'm sure going to need it. I have to lose about 120lbs
which to be honest may be a lot easier because there will be periods of time that I'll be eating through a straw. I plan to start cardio and wheight training and reverse this diabetic roller coaster I've been on. No more sugar! I'm extremely afraid of failure, so much that it's been paralysing at times but like I said before, with all of you behind me, I feel like I can accomplish ANYTHING. Thanks for taking this ride with me, I'll do my best not to let you down.
okay... well that felt good, to get it out there and now its in print. So theres no turning back....DAMN ;)
On the dental front, let me update you all about why my goal has increased. First of all, I knew at the beginning that 40k was on the low side of what needs to be done if Om going to go to the best dentist for my situation. Theres a dentist in NYC called the jazz dentist and he is also a trumpet player so he will feel right at home when dealing with me. I am getting at least the plan of attack from him and maybe farm out some of the procedures. The bottom line is, I will need somewher between 48 and 60 k depending on how well things go, so I am planning on being as healthy as possible to keep that number on the low end (as if!)
Not to mention Gufundme takes 8 percent... so the number youre looking at isn't the actual number I will get to use. Dont get me wrong , I am still extremely grateful.
In the interum, I asked my current dentist if he could make some sort of quick fix so I can at least continue to work until I have the surgeries. He made me a partial denture for the front teeth that are so crutial for playing trumpet and although it feels really strange, I can at least smile a little without feeling embarrassed and more importantly, I can play again!
At least I can play well enough to not break down to tears everytime the mouthpiece touched my lips because thats where I was just two weeks ago.
The problem is that the teeth that the partial are anchored to are suspect, so time is precious.
I need to start the real work asap before I'm back to square one which is not being able to play at all.
Its going to take about 18 months once I get the implants but forst I will need periodontal work and then possible bone grafts and all that has to go well before I can get the implants.. as I said, a long road ahead and with your support I know I can do it.
So thank you again, I'll try to be more frequent with updates and hopefully you wont get sick of hearing from me.
I have to go know as Aidan has been more than patient waiting for me to take him to the playground this whole time. (he realized I liked the drum solo, so he stopped! lol)
Much, much love and gratitude,
I am completely overwhelmed with the generosity of not only my family and friends but complete strangers!
I am starting to see a glimmer of hope for my situation as we get closer to my goal, which, to be honest, last week, was completely absent. The last two days have been crazyily up and down for me. Every donation brought tears to my eyes and then soon after, reality sunk in again. I used to play music to pull me out of any situation, and right now, trying to play makes me sadder than words can describe. But thanks to all of your generosity and encouraging words, I know I'll be back and with a vengeance! Thank you again, so very very much and please pass the word along to continue the support as we still have quite a way to go. I love you all and I cant wait to play again!!!!
Wishing you the best, Scott. Keep the strength and you can do whatever you put your mind to. As they say....one hurdle at a time. Do your best to stay on track & you'll get there.
Scott, a talent like yours needs to be preserved! I don't have 2 dimes to rub together but I have my best wishes, my prayers for a speedy recovery and the ability to share this with people. Take care!
Scott....I'm glad to part of this. Don't let the embers of hope fade away.... You keeping that alive will allow the love and support that is rising around you to kindle the flames of your health/music again.....Looking forward to being Aruda scorched again......Luv to ya
I must recomend Dr Bill Depeitro for crown and bridge work and Dr Teranna .. for implants....excellent long lasting work.....they are next door to each other in Revere and work together on your results.......