being sucky at something really jams her up!
Do her mental battles on the floor mirror yours?
(PS: everyone sucks at something…learning to deal with that is the goal)
Put another way, I want to be good at everything. No, I want to be GREAT at everything. And as I type these words, I realize how ridiculous that is.
I loved it. I practiced the piano avidly – it came naturally to me, and I was good.
I had to work harder to learn the cello, but I did. I wanted to be great.
I thought maybe I could be.
Recitals freaked me out, though. Recitals, competitions, really anything that required me play in front of people. When I had to sing a few warm-ups in high school voice class, in front of the other students, my throat closed up and I started to cry.
At a piano competition my senior year of high school,
my mind blanked and I stopped in the middle of the song.
I didn’t know if I was good enough.
I couldn’t handle not being good enough.
You’ve been working out here for two years.
Such a simple message: “You’re not good enough.” But is it so simple? Good enough for what? For whom? What does that even really mean? It’s actually a pretty vague statement. Mostly, I want to be good enough for me. But I’m a tough critic, and my standards for myself are extremely high. It’s not about competition or being as good as – or better than – other people. Yes, I do compare myself to others at times (I hate it, but I do). But it’s not because I want to out-do them, and I certainly do not harbor any resentment towards them. It’s because I believe I have to be amazing, and if others can do things, I should be able to, too.
Here are some things I wish I were good at, but I’m not:
-writing poetry (I can write a damn fine essay. How exciting, right?)
-dancing (I’m lucky if I don’t fall while walking in a straight line)
-being suave and witty in social situations (I.am.so.awkward.)
-accepting that I can’t be good at everything
-being a mother
-being a teacher
But the thing is, those two things are such, well, human things. Being a great mother and teacher is about my humanity, about who I am. Being human is not about being perfect. It’s about being flawed, and allowing grace to cradle us.
And every single moment of my life entails decisions – as a mother, teacher, wife, exerciser, human, I am making decisions with every breath.
I can make the decision to allow myself to struggle and fail – whether in my home, in my classroom, or on the Method floor.
I can choose to be good at being bad at things.
I can choose grace.