Tuesday, February 19, 2013

Love Letter to Practicing

Dear Practicing,

This love letter is long overdue.  I want to write to you my pledge to fall back in love you with you, perhaps even fall really in love with you for the first time.  I've taken you for granted and just assumed you'll be there when I need you. I've praised you to my students but ignored you myself. I've used you for quick, selfish affairs right before competitions and deadlines and kidded myself into thinking that, because of those intense times, I really knew you.  You deserve so much more than I've ever been willing to give before.

I'm sorry for the times I've neglected you.  Though it may not seem like it, I've watched and appreciated you as you've transformed my students' confusion to clarity and frustration to triumph.  I've praised you to them and even prompted them to dig deep and give you the patience you deserve.  I've known your magic, your comfort, your possibility, and still I've avoided you.  I regret all the time lost and the understanding I've missed out on because I haven't been willing to be vulnerable enough to face you. 

I've wondered if it's simpy a cliche that's made our relationship so rocky.  If I truly try and give you my all and I'm still not good enough, then where will I be?  The more I think about it, though, it seems that my issue is more one of embarrassment.  I hate to think that after so many years of knowing about your beauty, your power, your ability to unlock the mysteries of music and my mind, I have not taken advantage of all you have offered so freely. I have trouble admitting that I still need to work so hard on the basics and be reminded so often of things "I should already know." 

Practicing, sweet gift, I am ready to commit.  I am ready to leap first and trust that the net will appear.  I'm ready to show up and just give you all I have to offer.  I'm flawed, I need to be reminded of things constantly, and I make mistakes I would never let my students make.  Forgive me. Forgive me for the neglect and forgive me for not trusting you to simply take me as I am and guide me, step by baby step, toward goals I don't even know I will have yet.  

I won't be perfect, I'll admit it.  I have the best of intentions to lavish attention on you and come to our dates with a clear head and a willing spirit, but there are times that I will fail.  I will forget that you are more important than paperwork, more important than dishes and more important than thinking I'm fine without you.  Forgive me in advance, sweet practicing, and just welcome me with open arms when we're together.  Let's set a daily date as a goal, but even if we don't succeed, I want to learn to fully appreciate the precious hours we do have together.  We have lots of gorgeous music ahead, you and I, and I am so thankful that you're still here for me after all these years.

Happy Valentine's Day, Practicing - I'll see you tomorrow :)