Contemplation 4

(From four weeks ago. Found it in my drafts box and decided to post it. There’s some good memories here.)

It’s really hard to write uplifting, encouraging posts when I’m not happy with the world around me. When nothing is going right. When I’m not doing too well with the tasks I’m supposed to be good at, like music and writing. When my self-esteem isn’t high, and my self-confidence is at a low.

These days, I’ve been so busy with practicing, and trying to get stuff right, and not getting stuff right, and more practicing, and still not getting stuff right. It’s discouraging.

I need to remind myself that I’m very very thankful to be here. Because I am. I am so glad that I’m here. I’m meeting so many dedicated and like-minded people who are also so talented at their instruments (or composing) in addition to being kind. They are inspiring. Not to mention the really brilliant teachers like Bruce Brubaker or Natalya Antonova. I sat in during a lesson with Ms. Antonova, and I love her. Very firm, but clear corrections and she seemed like quite a kind person. (I still think she might have made me cry, anyway.) I honestly love it here. However, I do feel inadequate. As if my skills aren’t enough, and they aren’t. As if I might never reach where I want to reach. That does worry me.

On the other hand…

I think being around so much maturity (whatever, that sounds weird) is making me grow up a little at a time. I’m trying to do better on the honesty front, at least. It’s making me want to work harder, do things better. I’m still held back by my lack of experience and knowledge, though.

For one thing, I’m learning how to carry on intelligent conversations with people.

But let me tell you, sitting down at a piano and improvising something pretty, if imperfect, is an excellent feeling. Right up there with getting the piece I’m actually supposed to be working on right.

Oh, and I had a day maker. An opera student said to me, “I feel so happy whenever I see you. I see you, and then I just feel so happy and good about life. You make me feel so happy.”

Or something to that effect. It did make me happy.

Gotta love those opera students. 😉

(To clarify, she was not my student. We were both students in different programs in the music festival.)

All photos are under a CC license and used with permission. Click photos for credits.


53 thoughts on “Contemplation 4

  1. Gosh… unbelievable pics… love that blue door poking through!
    and I agree, it’s pretty much the most amazing compliment that anyone could ever get!
    xo tash!

  2. Aw that’s so sweet (the opera student)! That would definitely make my day that I made someone happy, even if I’m not feeling my happiest. I do hope you’ve begun to feel better (since this post is older) and less inadequate (I’m sure you’re much better than you give yourself credit for!).

  3. Well is that statement doesn’t put you in a pleasant mood I’m not sure what would.

    Wisdom comes with age. I can’t believe how much I have matured from 19 to now- or even from last year to this year. Hopefully your attitute had changed and you’re feeling better this week.

  4. I’m like that too —-> the pessimistic mind. But I’m always glad when I’ve said something that’s inspired someone…whoever that is. Most times I don’t have to know WHO, I just feel it :-). I always feel creative writing and being humorously sarastic is what uplifts me daily (humorously sarastic tues? Sigh- can I blame it on the evening lol?) ………….I never try to take things so seriously. As long as I’m speaking how I feel – maybe not 100%, but I still feel good 🙂

  5. What that opera student said to you was seriously awesome. I know a few and they’re very cool — definitely the type of people you want to be around. I kinda feel like I’m in the same place as you right now; I’m really depressed about some aspects of school while I love others. It’s tough. And then there are times I look beyond my world at the whole world around me and I see so much joy there as well as so much pain. It’s easy to feel crippled. So I try to think of what I can do and what I can plan. Some days it helps, sometimes it doesn’t. Keep your chin up, my dear. Things will get better, I sincerely believe they all will.

  6. Sometimes it doesn’t take much to brighten your day – just a nice compliment like the one from your friend can lift your mood which can change how you see thngs for the rest of the day. You should try to pass the feeling on and see if you can make anyone else’s day – a little good karma never hurt anyone!

    xoxo, Ashley

  7. That is such a sweet sentiment. I wish I could say it in person, but I do really appreciate it when you stop by my blog and comment. It’s like passing by a friend in the hallway–a bright smile, and little pat on the shoulder. Your presence, even on-line, is very much welcomed.
    Sorry you are feeling down. You are so hard on yourself! Give yourself a break once in a while and take a look around you. YOu make lots of people happy. And if that makes you feel better, than so be it!

  8. “I think being around so much maturity (whatever, that sounds weird) is making me grow up a little at a time.”

    I know what you mean. I felt this way when I made new friends and they all loved to have serious discussions. I felt so much more grown up!

    What that student said is so sweet!

  9. Thank you for the comment on my blog. Your blog is beautiful. I think it’s important to take the good with the bad. Also, it’s important not to fake things. I think that people assume that it’s not okay to be in a rough spot with emotions. It’s nice to see people reconize and admit that they’re not always 100%. Oh, and what an awesome comment from a student. Those are what make a day, week, month.

  10. Maybe you need to take a little break from it. Sometimes that helps me when I am feeling overwhelmed and frustrated. Just a *brief* one, go out and enjoy yourself, laugh a little, you’ll relax and come back brand new! 🙂

  11. Hi Abby!
    I love the way you write all your posts, they are always so sincere and honest, and it´s so great reading someone as creative as you writing about her feelings.
    Thank you!

    Hope you have a wonderful day!!

  12. Its always a rocky start each day..because we are not in a perfect world..and sometimes its very hard to embrace the imperfections, but I think you are very well, bouncing back. All the best on your thoughts and work.

  13. awwww what a sweet compliment! It’s amazing how one simple comment like that can mean the difference between a good day and a bad. It makes you really think about what you say to other people and how you are affecting them. Growing up. New opportunities. Going after dreams. Sometimes, it all becomes too much, but in the end, if you’re doing what you love, the hard work will pay off 🙂 You’ll get there!

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  15. To be able to write about the good things even when one feels discouraged and down takes courage and perseverance on your part. One of my favourite ways of cheering someone on is by saying, “Keep on truckin’!”, and you do that. There’ll always be hiccups along the way, but ultimately, the good outweigh the not-so-good.

  16. Oh Abby, you sound like an artist (smile)! You know, as artists, I think we sometimes get caught up in ‘the perfect’ melody, design, painting, or even recipe. I’ve noticed when I stop worrying about that and just enjoy my own creations along with those of others, I feel better and therefore performing better comes naturally. Maybe being around so many other talented and mature performers will help you grow. It sounds fun to me…!
    p.s. your comment on my blog made me happy;)

  17. aww. sorry you’re not feeling at your best, but then again — maybe you are? times of trial are times of growing. you have a really good attitude though! ❤ and that made me happy, about your day maker!

  18. Wow, what on earth is with the number of comments you have on here? It’s a gift, but I’m wondering how on earth you did it 😉 A lot of activity in other people’s blogs as well perhaps?

    I wanted to ask if you ever record your piano improvisations. I don’t so much anymore, but I’ve recorded some of them on video or with a microphone, and I actually find myself listening to it a lot, as good mood or contemplation music for myself. I would enjoy having a chance to hear your improvisations as well.

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