Sunday, July 10, 2011

July 10, 2011: Back to the Office...


Well, thank you for all your support!  That was really nice!  I read your comments as I was waiting in the stadium seats at Petco Park on Friday for my 30 second shot at sharing Bella with the world...

... unfortunately, I came up short.  I got cut.

What to say, things went SO smoothly on Thursday that I thought they would go as smoothly on Friday.  I really thought that I would march right in, find someone to share my story with, and be whisked off to talk with the producers.  A little "magical thinking" going on there, of which we all know I am found culpable of from time to time.  The fact was, I sought out and found one of the producers, then balked at the chance to tell my story.  I chickened out!  I simply asked if I'd have a chance at the audition table to tell my story, and they said yup, so I waited until I was standing in front of two producers, in a line 4 across of other mildly to untalented singers.  When I got in front of them, NO ONE else spoke when it was their turn, they just started singing, so I felt nervous because clearly I wasn't supposed to talk at all...

... of course, that didn't stop me, but I totally fumbled my story to get it out quickly, and didn't deliver THE TRUTH of the matter the way I knew to.  Then, I thought that I sang well enough that the combination of my story and my singing would send me through, and when they gave us all the axe, I just stood there and shuffled off smiling, thinking, "Wait a minute, it didn't happen?"  I genuinely thought while I was with the producers that they would send me through, and after I walked away, I felt proud that I went for it (better than running from the idea), but sad that I didn't NAIL EVERY WORD that I had to say.

There is a great sales presentation trainer out there that I have read named Patricia Fripp, and in her training, she HAMMERS HOME the point that you need to know what your audition or presentation is worth to you, and you need to divide that into the number of minutes or seconds you have to make your presentation or pitch.  By doing this, you realize really clearly how much every word and every second is worth, and by doing this, you don't waste words or time delivering your message.  Being the verbose guy that I am, I struggle with this.

Having spewed all that, I am a recovering perfectionist, and rarely satisfied with my work at any level.  I could have spent just as much time writing about the bad split second decisions I made today playing goalie, despite making probably close to a dozen saves (that is a lot of saves in one match... busy day for me).  P.S. I don't play goalie competitively, and it's been over a year since I played a whole match in the goal.  Never mind that, I should have made EVERY decision right!  LOL.  Oh the folly of it all...

What I can tell you about the day though is that I just could smell the desperation in the air from so many who literally pin their hopes and dreams on making it on Idol.  There were people singing (screaming?) ALL DAY long... singing to "warm up" or practice, or just be heard.  What I saw in a lot of incidences was people just desperate to be heard, be noticed, for whatever reason.  The voice is sooo intimate an instrument... to put it on display in front of your teen peers... for some it was a display of guts, bravado, and/or confidence, but for others it was a display of delusion or desperation.  But hey, I was there, too...  which was I?

That is the conundrum in all this....

The biggest challenge in this journey for me is balancing/blending the messenger with the message.  The message is Bella, the messenger is me.  Sometimes I do a good job just being a transcriber or transducer, hoping to remain somewhat transparent in the process.  However, sometimes my ego gets in the way, and the messenger loses his grounding - his source - from the message.  My honest belief is that Bella picked me, big mouth, big ego and all, and never expected me to be perfect, just powerful.  In the end, THAT is why I was in San Diego on Friday, because I knew that I would only regret NOT going for it.

Don't hold off any longer on that thing you KNOW you wanna do.  Don't ever find yourself saying, "I wish I had [fill in the blank], but it's too late now."  While I am bummed I didn't get picked, I am SO PSYCHED I at least tried.  And for all the things I shared recently about regretting going to MN with Bella, at the end of the day I know that I was destined to outlive Bella.  If we did nothing, after outliving her, I would be left with, "I wish we would have tried Minnesota."  TO BE CLEAR, I am not advocating this to any other EB parents about whether you should or shouldn't go BMT.  I respect each and every EB parent's decision and opinion on whether they think BMT would be best for their child.  I am just speaking for me.  In life, don't be left wondering.  Know.

Lastly, please hold EB mom Michelle Burch Ragler and her husband Gordon in your prayers.  Their 15-yr old daughter, Lexi, got her butterfly angel wings this past week, and they need help paying for her funeral.  They are $7,000 short, and having to post on facebook in a general call for help.  I am going to repost mom's facebook post as a call to action for anyone moved to assist:


If losing your daughter isn't enough, the financial stress of not being able to afford the funeral... that is just too much.  The messenger in me really wants to make lots of money in my lifetime so I can literally call the funeral home in incidents like this and make that stressor go away for that family.  I wish I had understood the power of philanthropy earlier in life.  For many, MANY years, I was so anti-money, because I only equated money with materialism.  I never saw the connection between money and philanthropy.  Now that I do, I feel so far behind.  There is so much to do.  There are so many causes, and so many traditional funding sources just vanishing.

Alright alright, thank you for reading as always.  We are sincerely grateful to have you in our lives.  Thank you for continuing to come and share your lives with us as we share ours with yours.  I will tell you that when I was filling out the "Your Story" they have you fill out, I hesitated when it came to filling in my hometown.  I though of the episodes where they show all the people cheering for and supporting the contestants.  Well, since entering the blogosphere and FB big time after Bella's birth, and reading all the words of encouragement on here and on facebook about auditioning for Idol, I realized that this is my community.  The virtual world is still full of real people.  It's not virtual at all.

God night.

Now for a whole slew of pics from audition day as well as from our thank you dinner with Team Bella this weekend...

The audition tents.  You line up 4 across and sing until they stop you...

Check out the cute t-shirt I had made for the audition...

Meanwhile, the mermaid goes through... watch for her... I have a feeling she'll make the TV show...

Nice shot from behind home plate... a BEAUTIFUL ball park, by the way...

Last shots of the tents before the camera was made to go away...Break a leg!

... and the view of the tents one last time after being cut... mind you... only 100 or so from the 10,000 there will get to audition in front of Randy, J. Lo and Steven, and only a fraction on the 100 make it onto the episode...

Since we were walking along the warning track in the outfield on the way out, I had the kid I was walking with take this of me 'scaling the wall' for a fly ball...

Ali asked the Mariachi band for the Chicken Dance...

Look at the knife they gave me to use to cut the birthday cake for Ang that Sara brought!  (Ang's big 40 is on July 18....)

Daddy leading the kids in the conga line to keep them entertained...

"The Core" Team Bella: L-R Lara Seto-Davidson, Sara Cooper, me, mommy, and Jennifer Thomas.  Thank you, ladies.  Bella's Birthday Bash would NEVER have been half as beautiful without you.

Lara's boy, Charlie Braeden, Ali, and Jennifer's youngest, Nolan...


  1. There's just something in Bella's pictures - she always looks peaceful and like she's light years ahead of us - as if she knows much more. What a little doll - both girls are. Love, Terri

  2. Sorry you didn't make it through at Idol, Tim. I remember being frustrated when I went to support my friend because lots of talented people didn't make it, because of course they have to make good TV - so folks like the mermaid girl got in rather than talented singers. I know, mermaid girl can maybe sing. The one at the Phoenix auditions was the Bikini Girl - and she could NOT sing, but she made it all the way to audition in front of Simon et al.

    Anyway - great pics! Looks like a fun time. :)

    News from us: Ari turned two on Saturday! And he is going to be a big brother come February. :)


  3. Hey - YOU know you didn't go further with Idol because you really have other things to was not where you are meant to be. Just another experience that might come in useful in ways you aren't expecting....


  4. you are still an american idol :)

    it was great to have a fun dinner out with you guys!

  5. But you tried, didn't you, Tim?

    You didn't think about trying and not get round to it.

    You didn't hum and ha and if and but and maybe.

    You didn't dither.

    We went and did it!

    You've got more guts than most.

    Fondly, always,


    PS When is Julian due? Ang looks so wonderful in the photo.

  6. Sorry you didn't get any further, Tim - but even just having Bella' picture on your shirt helped tell her story (even if it wasn't how you intended to tell it!) It looks like it was quite an experience!

    Happy 4-0 to Ang (and tell her welcome to the club!) Hope all the Ringgolds have a great week!

    Love from TX,
    Laura (for Team A)

  7. ...oops, that should have said "Bella's." I'm a recovering perfectionist too! :)

  8. Good for you for giving it a go! I know if you would have made in front of the judges - you would have brought them all to tears. Bella's story is amazing - and you know just as much as anybody that it is nowhere near over!
    I'm still working on getting an EB protocol together for the NICU that I work in.... (thanks Tanya for the info you gave me!) Our census has been crazy high for months now - so I've had little time to work on it. But every time I catch up with you guys, or any other EB blog for that matter, I'm reminded that I need to get it done - so that if/ when we have a baby born with EB, we can do things right from the start!

    Ok - enough rambling from me (that's what happens after working a crazy 12 hour shift!!!)

    Chicago, IL