By Nicole Douglas
I love teaching. I never expected to become a music teacher. But once I discovered the joy of helping a student, I was hooked. Over time, though, I began to realize that it was becoming difficult to play for my own enjoyment. Every time I would sit down at the piano, I could not escape the judgemental teacher's voice in my head telling me what needed to be fixed. I could be patient and kind and encouraging with my students, but when it came to myself, all that was left was focusing on how far I had to go and how defeated I felt at my lack of time to practice.
Then I attended a workshop focused on developing the whole musician. One of the assignments was to write about how we feel about our instrument and how our instrument feels about us. I can’t explain in words how it happened, but it was like I was given permission to hear the loving and caring teacher inside my piano. It was like I had unwrapped a beautiful gift that I’d wanted for so long.
The holiday season is filled with giving and receiving. There are so many who have given so much. As we pause from our normal teaching schedules, may we take time to ponder on the gift that music gives to us.