Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Get Up, Stand Up

I used to be that kid... you know, the one that would hide and give up for fear of failure. I was forced to learn to play the piano, get extra math and English tutoring as well as being pushed to excel academically. I did none of these things well, I admit. And, I'm still uncomfortable with failure but with age, I've gotten better at accepting both--a certain level of 'failure' as well as redirecting the fear to something that will help push me to succeeding. Sometimes brilliantly and other times not so much.

No, I didn't have a sudden near-death experience to illicit a fire under my arse but I've been left with my own thoughts about success and failure in a broader term and realized that I can sit here with the fear keeping me seated; or I can get up and do something about it and take control, and either work to excel or stare fear in the face and make the active choice to do what I can and still fail anyways. But, at least I tried.

What am I referring to? I'm on my way to my first piano lesson (again), tonight. Renewing my musical relationship, is on my "bucket list" and naturally, with the way things have been going, I've taken the decision that I want to revive my dormant memory and skills as now's as good a time as any. When I was being coerced to take it, I struggled with always being much less capable than my (younger) brother; he picked up the sight-reading and the tempos and scales like a duck to water. I, on the other hand was like a cod fish on land: totally out of my element. So, I mentally gave up. I figured it would be sufficient to muddle through to complete my RCM grade 8 and stop. I didn't have any interest to do more but figured that at least I 'accomplished' something. This uncomfortable sense of 'accomplishment' I garnered though, stayed with me in the back of my mind reminding me that I didn't really deserve to feel good about being able to say I completed my grade 8; I could barely sight-read. I have not touched the piano in over a decade now and we have two pianos at home: a grand and a small upright.

But, as my friend Dave reminds me, "You're an adult now. You can play whatever you want.". So, my decision is to start up bi-weekly lessons with a local teacher at the Piano Studio Etobicoke. My game plan is to hone and develop my abilities so that I am able to play the new scores I bought yesterday at Song & Script Music Store. I've always wanted to be able to play some of the greatest songs both classically and on-screen or stage and this is my chance to get back 'on stage'.


  1. That's awesome - very cool! I took piano lessons as a kid also and sucked. But my more musically-inclined husband is actually taking piano lessons right now after many, many years off as part of a music therapy degree.

    1. thanks! so far, i'm really enjoying myself. the sight reading came back to me a lot faster than i anticipated (it only took 10 years for the sight-reading to stick) and i learned a couple grade 1 songs! it sounds like both you and your husband have been reviving something for yourselves :)

  2. you took the first difficult step of re-starting, the rest is easy!