Friday, June 29, 2007

Back In Love

I have been ignoring Ramona lately.

I know I promised that would never happen, since I made a commitment to myself that if I was going to shell out the cash to pay for her (and all her accessories, which I conveniently forgot about) then I was going to do it. The problem is that I'm too easily bored and really have to fight to stick with something. But I told myself that this was something I would follow through on.

When I first got Ramona I was timid. Very, very timid. I sat there in my first lesson and was so incredibly excited, but was also incredibly scared. Do you know how awkward it feels to hold a guitar? It seems like it would be a natural thing. It's not.

So I sat there holding Ramona, feeling great amounts of discomfort, and thinking that I was crazy for buying her at all. I thought I would never learn to play her. Oh boy. That changed by the end of the first lesson. I was in love. Lazy, but in love.

In my lessons I often get frustrated, saying that I can't do something and wanting to just give up - I'm much like a child that way. However, I am gently scolded and told that yes I can do it - so to smarten up and try it again. And I do. And usually I get it right that time. Then I try to hide my smile by putting my head down and letting my hair fall over my face - but behind my hair I'm grinning, and inside I'm so excited that I got it and thankful that I was pushed to try it again.

Since that first lesson I have been learning to feel comfortable with Ramona, trying desperately to learn how to hold my hand on the neck (I keep bending my wrist into grotesque positions), tune her, play some chords, strum, and now scales. I'm finally not so scared every time I go for a lesson.

Ahem...however, since life has been so crazy lately I haven't had a lesson in a few weeks. I've picked up Ramona on my own maybe 3 times since my last lesson. Bad Ali.

I think that after I hit a certain point of not practicing I almost began to feel like it was too late. That I had forgotten everything I'd learned so far so what was the point of practicing? It's almost like when you lose contact with a friend - after a few months you begin to think that they probably don't really want to talk to you anyways, so why should you pick up the phone? Then before you know it, years have gone by. It was that sort of mentality.

Last night I had a lesson...uh oh.

On the drive to the lesson I was pouty and moody, putting myself into a funk because I didn't want to be caught having not practiced - even though I had already confessed it to my teacher. I nearly cancelled because I was thinking, "eh, there's no point, I'm going to suck anyways". But I didn't (cancel, that is). Miracle of miracles.

But the second I started to strum (albeit with some mistakes and a little awkwardness as first) I began to feel my self-doubt melt away. But I still kept saying things like "I don't remember this - I can't do it", and my teacher just kept giving me this smug little smile, because he knew that I really did remember it, even if I told myself I didn't.

And soon enough the loving, excited feelings came rushing back, and with a little more encouragement from my teacher I quickly remembered what I had learned thus far. How could I have forgotten what an awesome feeling it is play Ramona?

Silly me - I won't let that happen again.


Blogger John said...

Now that you have that love it will never go away. In my 20s and early 30s I hardly played anything at all, my Baby moved house with me and lived under the bed, untouched. Then I started to dabble a bit again, it came back really fast, then I got my first 6 string at the age of 41 and hardly a day goes past that I do not hammer out something one one of my guitars (mostly the Ibanez these days for obvious reasons).

So stick with it, Ali,you clearly have a great teacher who knows how to get the best from you, and even if you DO stop for a while, it soon comes back better than before because after a time even when you are not playing you will be thinking about playing when you listen to a song, subconsiously working out the chords, riffs and timing. There is no way back...

7:07 AM  
Blogger Logziella said...

You are so much like me! I do the same thing when it comes to a task that seems daunting to me. Then when I finally do just give it my all, I end up loving it and wondering why I wasted that time.

Glad you are back in the game with Ramona! :0)

2:35 PM  
Blogger James said...

Go for it Ali. Sometimes I wish I was musical.


4:57 PM  
Blogger mr zig said...

Hm... you should hook me up with lessons with this teacher of yours! I bet he could teach me a few things! (hehehe) -

Actually Ali, you are doing VERY well! Even my wife commented on how much you've learned in our few lessons! - Hey, are you ready for your next lesson? - Did you practice as much as you said you would? - I guess we'll see when you come for your lesson! :) hehe

8:56 AM  
Blogger Irene said...

As Frank Black sings:
"I heard ramona sing
And I heard everything
The speed they’re traveling
They are the only thing

Congrats on getting back to her!

9:18 AM  
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