Help outfit Michael, Sarah, and John

Tuesday, January 27, 2015

Musical opportunities

Sometimes I know that I need to write a blogpost, but I'm not even sure where I should start...I have been so caught up in getting things done for my children, that I can be last on my to-do list. If you're nodding your head, then I know I'm not alone on this.

How am I doing? So glad you asked. Okay. Not splendid. Not horrible. The last week or so, I find myself close to tears by the time the evening sets in. Iryna and Silas' behaviors may be playing a big part in this. Iryna has been doing this thing where she picks and picks at her pointer finger, in the fingernail area and it bleeds like crazy. You would think this would hurt her, and she is pretty freaked out when it does start bleeding, but this doesn't stop her from picking. Ugh! Anyhow, this post is *supposed* to be about how I'm doing. See how easy it is to get off track?!

Anyhow, I have been feeling like I suffer from either OCD or anxiety...or maybe even both. I don't have a diagnosis, but I do know that my mind is going all the time and it can be hard to slow it down. It didn't bother me as much before I went gluten-free. My mind was pretty foggy then. But now that my mind is crystal clear, I find myself overwhelmed with worrying and things that need to be done, followed by guilt and more worrying.

Some of the worrying is normal, but I don't think all of it is. I have an appointment with my doctor soon to discuss this very topic. I also think I have some carpal tunnel going on. My right hand tends to go numb. I wear a wrist brace at night, which helps me when sleeping, but now my hand will go numb doing other things. I am thinking I will need to have some sort of surgery to fix it, like my good friend, Amie. One more thing, right?

I recently was called to play the piano in primary. I play during the second hour and then I teach my wonderful 7-8 years olds in the third hour. I absolutely LOVE playing the piano and teaching my class has also become a joy for me. My good friend, Karen, plays the organ in sacrament meeting and she recently asked me if I could fill in for her one Sunday a month. Terrified to make a mistake, or seven, I accepted and have been practicing the piano in the past month more than any other time in the past 10 years. It feels good to be playing again and I am reminded of how much I enjoy playing on the piano. I also had the thought to ask Karen to supply me with a violin/piano duet that I can work on, so I can accompany her in sacrament meeting. This is truly stretching me, but I am excited to improve myself.

Last September, a friend of mine asked me if I want to audition for the Mormon Choir of Washington DC. When she mentioned it to me, I felt the Holy Ghost confirm to me that I should try out with my friend. During the audition, the woman accompanying me asked me to make some changes to the way I was singing. She said I wasn't singing forward enough and that I was wearing out my voice very quickly by singing in the back of my throat. I tried to comply but I wasn't really sure what she was asking me to do. I felt frustrated in the way she spoke and it made me want to leave. I stuck around for the practice and enjoyed the music we sang. Later that week I learned that Tyler was leaving for military training and would be gone for several weeks. I emailed the choir secretary and asked if I could begin attending the choir practices in January, and they approved.

As December rolled around, I kept thinking of better ways I could spend the weekly choir practices. One evening a week was precious to me as it is my time with Tyler after the children go to bed. I started praying, asking if Heavenly Father really wanted me to sing in the choir. I knew that He had wanted me to audition, but did I have to really follow through with it? I prayed, hoping I could just opt out now. I was also embarrassed to see the accompanist again. Plus, my voice truly does wear out easily and a long choir practice is hard on my voice. Well, the answer was clear: God wanted me to not only audition for the choir but be IN the choir.

So three weeks ago, I joined my friend and went to the choir practice. Once again, I enjoyed the music we sang - both religious and classical music. I felt better about being in the choir. My friend, Lynne, said that the accompanist, Linda, offered free voice lessons to anyone who wanted to show up early to choir practice. I told Lynne I was interested in learning how to not have my voice tire out so quickly. Before I knew it, Lynne set things up with Linda and the second week of choir practice began with me taking a lesson from Linda. It was a wonderful lesson and I learned so much from her in those 20 minutes. I now plan to show up early every week and learn from this wonderful teacher. I know that if I had just ignored those promptings, that I would continue having the voice abilities that I currently have. But God wants for me to become better, and He has provided a teacher to show me how. I am so grateful.

1 comment:

Mary said...

Hang in there, Jill! Anxiety is tough and no fun, but it is definitely possible to overcome it. It's fantastic that you're seeking help and talking to your doctor is a great first step! If it is anxiety and/or OCD, see if you can get a referral for CBT (cognitive-behavioral therapy), since that type of therapy has a very high success rate. If you have any questions, feel free to fb message me or shoot me an email. *Hugs* Just remember that you are an awesome person and things WILL get better! x