I do it, and I do it big. Here's to not forgetting about it.

Posts tagged ‘Belonging’

Confidence, My Foot.

If you’re a regular reader of my blog, you know I like to roll solo. If not, bring yourself up to speed here.

Heh. Speed. I don’t have that. I’m running with the 2:30 pace group tomorrow, just slightly behind my best
half-marathon time I ran in January. Coachie says I’m not allowed to run the hell out of this race as Augusta 70.3 is in only SEVENTY-ONE DAYS OMG and I shouldn’t risk injury. Can’t be mad at that. Plus, I’ve been sleeping in this:

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Mm-hmm! My strassburg sock brings all the boys to the yard, y’all. Which brings us back to preferring to be alone LOL! Today, I was at the race expo with my cousin. She will be running the 5k. It’s perfect because I had a buddy that I don’t actually have to run with. Everyone wins. As we were walking around, she was lamenting that most racing paraphernalia was geared toward the half-marathon distance. “Some of us aren’t there yet!” She rightly protested. Granted, the race is part of the Rock N’Roll Marathon Series, but if you’re going to have a 5k, why not ensure that runners of that race feel like they are equals? My opinion is not really humble here, but if you’re going out there and doing your best, and the best at that moment in time is a 5k as opposed to a half-marathon, why should you get any less props? I can’t say I remember feeling that way myself prior to running longer distances, but that may be because I’m already so accustomed to feeling inadequate that lack of representation through running swag was the least of my concerns.

And indeed, I did find it odd that I didn’t feel odd at the expo myself. As exhibitors asked me if this was my first half and I said, “Nope,” it further cemented that I am one of these running people. Slow as I may be, whatever distance I cover.

Upon returning to the rest of my family, I met this cool guy who has been running a long time. He was complaining that he could never get his full marathon time under 3:30. Hahahahaha! I regret not telling him what my time goal is tomorrow for my half. I let my fear of inadequacy win, which makes me wonder if I REALLY believe deep down that my 5k running cousin deserves those accolades.

Nah. I know she does. I know I’m awesome too – for being willing to grow and challenge myself. I just have to learn to embrace it.

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Ms. IronPianist – Joan Of All Trades, Master of None

I am blessed to have a circle circles of extraordinarily talented and capable people around me. Their gifts and strengths are diverse, and I count myself thankful that I have no one in my life from whom I cannot learn. Appreciative though I may be, I find myself sad at times. As I float in and out of my circles, there is not one in which I feel completely comfortable. I struggle with feeling like an outsider, and I often wonder if doing less would alleviate my feeling disconnected.

Ms. – The Teacher

One might think that having two degrees in separate fields of music teaching would make me feel like I know what the hell I’m doing. Quite the opposite, actually. I am far from the first person to realize that the more you learn, the more you realize you don’t know much of anything. I give special recognition to teaching for being the area in which I feel doubly inadequate; both parading myself in front of 25 pairs of eager eyes and sharing what makes the most sense to me with one willing child. Most of my colleagues whom I would call friends have been teaching for significantly longer than I have. Much of that has to do with the fact that they went into music education in school before I did. I’m always late to everything!

Iron – The Triathlete

So, I’ve been doing triathlons for about 5 minutes in relation to my life of music. I call myself a triathlete unapologetically because it’s what I do. I have a coach. I eat to fuel for the sport. I train to improve. I complete races. Don’t think there’s anything missing, except the awesome, naturally. It would be unreasonable for me to expect to be a beast at these beginning stages, but it doesn’t stop me from noticing that everyone around me is faster. I would imagine that most have more experience, not unlike my colleagues, but I still fight with the thoughts that I don’t belong and that no matter how good I get, they – and it doesn’t matter whom they are – will always be stronger and faster.

Pianist – Duh.

I have a lot of emotion wrapped up in being a pianist. More so than either teaching or triathlon. While I am still a novice triathlete and even a young teacher, it’s fair to say I am a seasoned pianist. I have little tolerance for people who say “I’m not that good!” with false humility, so I won’t do that here. I’m well-trained and get things done. After 25 years of playing, I should. And there’s the rub. Could I be doing even better? I look at bios of other pianists and they seem extraordinarily more polished and impressive than mine. Where did I go wrong?

Joan

The choice to pursue all three of my major interests as an adult means that I cannot give all of my time to any one of them. I must admit that part of me is relieved, in that somewhere in my twisted brain my being a pianist is an excuse for my not being fast. “I could have trained to get faster but I had to practice!” I’m always shielding myself from accusations of inadequacy or mediocrity – accusations that I don’t think have ever come. “But you guys are thinking it, I swear! You think that I suck and you just smile and pretend to be my friend because I’m cute and witty.” I’m a head case.

But I can’t imagine my life without any of the three. All of them are ways to express the joy and full life for which I am so grateful. The grandness of playing Brahms will never be like crossing a finish line, which will never be like seeing a child’s eyes light up as s(he) is exposed to something for the first time. I am so blessed and humbled that I get to do all of these things.

I will never know if I am good enough. I’m not even sure if I’m doing the best I can with the gifts God has given me. I just know that I am better than I was yesterday.

I pray that’s enough.

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