For some reason even after a Bachelor's in music and paid gigs (sax, electric bass, backup vocals), I still have trouble considering myself a musician. Now there is the whole "oboist" term to content with. All along I've been calling myself an "oboe student". But lately I've been feeling like maybe I've put in enough work to start calling myself an "oboist", even if I do have to qualify it with something like "amateur". I think that it's my reed making efforts which are causing me to change perspective. Though I still have a ways to go before sounding well-rounded, I feel like the reed making alone is enough to qualify me as a real oboist. Who else but an oboist willingly gives up big chunks of free time to scrape bamboo?
Actually, the real reason behind all this is that I am actively working towards trying to enjoy the journey more in all areas of my life. Left to my own devices, I will focus on a goal almost blindly so that days pass by without my even noticing. Then I start feeling as though I will only be happy once the goal is achieved. But how about if it takes forever (or never happens)? I have to learn to appreciate every day as the gift that it is.
Don't mind me. I'm a bit melodramatic because for a few moments this weekend I felt as though I was in my favorite dream. I may have mentioned it before. The first time I remember having it I was 7 years old. The dream takes place at a wonderful village by the water. It is always dusk and there are wonderful smells of plants, firewood, and sometimes food. Soft music (in minor keys) comes from an unknown source. And many of the people I care about are walking about happily, in preparation for a fun night to come. The funny thing is that time seems to stop in the dream because the sun never quite sets and I never do get to find out what it is that everyone is so excited about. The mood is one of anticipation laced with revelry. It is the most peaceful image I can conjure.
I just realized this weekend, as I was sitting at a park by the water at dusk, that part of what makes the dream so wonderful is the feeling of hopefulness. Everyone is so happy because it feels as though the entire world is out there for us to enjoy and be thankful for. Yet no one is really achieving anything at the moment; we just all seem to have limitless potential. But it's not big feats that matter. It's every day things. The sound of waves, the voice of a friends, a beautiful song.
I vowed to try to apply that to my own life. To quit postponing feeling good until I lose those 20 lbs. Or until I can play the Saint-Saens sonata. Or until I have initials after my name. The only time we have is now. I need to learn to live in an eternal twilight.