Friday, September 21, 2012

Like Playing Piano

When I was growing up I took piano lessons. Each week I would clutch my latest Bastien or Alfred's piano instruction book and march into my lesson while my mother met with her best friend over coffee. The ritual was soothing, mechanical, something I could rely on.

When I returned home, I'd go to the sunken living room with gold shag carpeting, and sit at the old antique upright piano and play. Rarely did I study the drills. Mostly I played the songs we were studying over and over and over. My goal was to get to the point where I could play the entire piece with my eyes closed, my hands automatic in their tempo and notes played.

Like the rocking of a rocking chair, playing the piano brought comfort in its regularity and fulfillment of expectations. It did what I expected it to do.

People like having some semblance of control in their lives.

What can you do to bring a sense of regularity to your own life? As we ease into the weekend, maybe you should try making a "to don't" list rather than a "to do" list. Can you stay away from social media for a day and spend more time with your family or a neighbor? Maybe you can add a walk to your day that is for pleasure and not fulfillment of your duty to exercise. Have you tried just sitting still long enough to listen to music and savor the sounds and process the way you react to those sounds?

My daughter has been practicing spelling her name. Over and over again she spells it on the backs of menus, on her drawings at school, and she takes pride in being able to spell it faster and faster and faster. Even with her eyes closed.

Don't forget to take the time to enjoy the feeling of cool air on your face as you fly to reach the stars. Have a great weekend!

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