A Way of Life

I've been a musician nearly all of my life.  I started playing the violin right before I turned four.  I can't even remember a time I didn't play the violin.  It's a deeply ingrained part of my life and something that contributed to my choice to study music in college.  When I arrived at that crucial life crossroad I realized that if I didn't choose to study music, I would probably stop playing forever (or at least make it hard to take up).  I chose to keep going.

I've never regretted my choice.  To this day I find music fascinating and by studying it in college it landed me in a career that I thoroughly enjoy.  Teaching the violin is something I feel like I was meant to do and I realize how rare that is when it comes to jobs.  Most people are not that lucky.

But as much as I connect with teaching, I realize more and more than I've never connected with a musician's calling.  I've never been a good practicer.  In college people would camp out in a practice room for hours like it was their job.  I put equal amounts of effort into avoiding said practice room.  I understand the need for practice but I never felt any sort of pressing desire to practice that intensely.  I didn't care, frankly.

Now that I'm out of school, I'll do the occasional gig for a fun change of pace.  But in general I view gigs as more of a chore than anything else.  Serious giggers practically live in their car as they lug their equipment from job to job, coming home at crazy hours from crazy-long rehearsals.  Again, I enjoy doing this a few times a year.  But on a regular basis?  No way, Jose.

Writing?  Now that's a different story.

I love the writing lifestyle.  Tell me to practice my violin for six hours and my soul curdles.  But work on my current work-in-progress for six hours?  Heck yeah.  I love camping out in coffee shops and tuning out the world as I get in a writing groove.  I love sipping tea as I work on blogs or editing.  I write every day because I feel like I need to, not because I have to.

This realization was a strange one for me to process because I always wished I had that kind of connection with music.  I enjoy music and it's important to me.  But it never became something I needed to do.

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