To observe, enjoy and create in everyday life

Plugging Along

I am about to wrap up my fifth month of piano lessons. I am still finding it enjoyable and certainly challenging to learn piano. There is so much to learn! When I began, I could not have told you where Middle C sat among all of the keys. I didn't know anything really. Now I have been slowly learning terms like forte and staccato and so many more. I have been working on tempo and learning what all of the different symbols mean. The whole process has felt a bit like learning a new language. It is like a workout for my brain each evening when I practice.

Learning piano has also been a very humbling experience. As an adult, there are very few things that I go into without having some basic knowledge of how to perform a given task. If I were to learn a new cooking technique, I would at least understand the basics of cooking. When I work to learn a new sewing skill, I understand how to operate a sewing machine. With piano, I had absolutely no foundation to draw from. I have had to accept that I would need to take my time and practice, practice, practice. I can not whiz through this process of learning. It would be too evident if I didn't practice. And I have to learn that it may take weeks or months to play a song passably. I have been working on "Ode to Joy" for three months. I still cannot play through those two sheets of music without making a mistake. But I keep at it. I refuse to admit defeat!

A friend of mine began to learn the violin at about the same time I began piano lessons. It's been fun to commiserate with her about the difficulties and joys of learning to play an instrument as an adult. We get excited over little accomplishments that feel so big to us. We've talked about learning a piece together and playing a duet later this fall. When tickets are released, I will be sure to post!
An added bonus to this process is that our dog Sadie comes in to the front room most nights to listen to me play. I call it her "evening concert." She either sits on the floor by the piano or lounges on the sofa. I think she might be one of my biggest cheerleaders. 

Have you learned an entirely new skill recently? What has your experience been like?


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  2. Ah! Learning a new skill. Yes. Practice makes perfect but as a perfectionist that can be hard. I tend to want to know how to do it, and do it right, right now. As I've gotten older I'm cutting myself some slack and not expecting perfection, but allowing myself to make mistakes and to keep going. Keep practicing. And good for you for learning a new skill (and playing the piano!). Well done! PS Sorry about the other (now deleted) comment...not sure why I'm having such a hard time commenting on blogger lately!

    1. Yes, it is so hard to not assume you'll get it right away...and do it well. That has been so hard for me to accept!

  3. I am glad to see you are keeping with it! I always wanted to learn piano!