Many of us begin with the first choice, myself included. I don’t quite remember the exact thoughts in the beginning because I was four. I have some memories from my start but they are just that, memories that could be factual or reproductions I have fabricated later in life from looking at photos. Who knows, and really, it isn’t important. I do know that it came quickly, it came easily, I was drawn to music and it made everything a little less empty. It didn’t require much work to play the pieces I was given in a way that the audiences or my teachers would deem good. So, as a young student I thought very simply about the violin. I am asked to play this piece. Okay, I will listen to it and soon I will know how to play it. Done. Next. Move on. Repeat. But the unfortunate byproduct was that I still fell victim to the natural fear and instincts within:
1. This is like juggling-jumping-spinning-and-brushing-your-teeth at the same time.
2. This instrument is expensive so don’t break it.
3. Definitely do not drop it, be careful, hold on!
4. What size tuxedo will you need for your first performance?
5. Oh yeah, relax! Are you listening? I said relax!
Not only this, but as a 4 year old, my only education had been in the school of holding stuff. I felt like I knew quite a bit:
1. Hold mom’s hand when crossing the street.
2. Hold fingers that are extended to me.
3. Hold onto things and put them in my mouth to examine.
4. Hold a fork to eat because I’m four, time to be sophisticated, no more shoveling food with dirty fingers (still struggling).
They say musicians are more than likely to excel in mathematical skills. Here is a formula to summarize:
clueless + overwhelmed + confused = stressed
stress + schedule + group of peers = need for action
genetics + need for action = tension
tension = grip of death
grip of death = fucked from day one