Monday, January 28, 2008

On learning to read…

I have always loved to read. I can remember in first or second grade taking a reading test and being moved up into a higher reading group the next day. It has always come so easy to me, I'm good at it, and it’s something I love to do.

So, imagine my dismay over the past month as I’ve tried to learn to read in a new way. This way does not come easy to me. I am continually trying to puzzle out the language, trying to put the letters together and, more importantly, get them right and have them make sense. It doesn’t make it any easier that I’ve never had the desire to learn to read like this. I’m not used to having to work at reading. I think I should be able to decide that I want to do it and have it down pat, like I remember it from when I was little.

But, despite its difficulty, despite my inability to remember what I’m “reading” at any given moment, I LOVE learning to read MUSIC.

Over the past month, my new-to-me-old piano has not sat idle. Thanks to a fabulous county library system, I found 3 different adult piano courses and one child one that got me playing right away. When one book doesn’t explain something, I get out another one and see if it makes more sense, or pull out the old “Complete Idiots Guide to Playing the Piano.” A good friend loaned me her basic piano playing course, and I’m almost done with it. I even got book that simplifies LDS hymns, and I’m trying those out. It’s so much fun, and gives me a creative outlet that is satisfying on a level that I’ve never had. I’ve danced to plenty of music, but I’ve never been the one making the music, until now.

I know I’m driving people crazy. I call people out of the blue to ask the dumbest questions. It makes me crazy that the notes on the bottom staff are off by one key, so I can’t use the same moniker to name the lines for the top staff as I can for the bottom. And the whole “no home row” thing? Totally threw me off. Granted, I knew from the get-go that there were far more keys than I had fingers, but it took 2 different people assuring me that no, you don’t always play the same key with the same finger, to get me to believe it (I hoped the book was just being anal).

So, while my adventures in learning to read early in my life haven’t helped me much in this new adventure, I am glad I’m puzzling out this new language. It’s kind of like joining a club late in life that everyone else joined years ago and either asked for a refund or paid for a lifetime membership. I hope I’m in the second group. I hope I can keep learning and growing in this new outlet.

I just know it has brought me so much joy! And who doesn’t need a little more joy in their life.


Stephanie said...

GO BECKY!!! I am so excited that you're learning to play the piano. It is definitley a great outlet. I love sitting down and playing when I have the time. It relaxes me, and I love creating such beauty (if I can really call it that) with my own fingers! Keep it up!!!

Melanie said...

I'm so impressed with how far you've come in the short time since you got your piano. Your motivation is setting such a good example for your boys. Can't wait to hear your latest songs!

Kayci Bitton said...

yay! It's fun to learn new things like that! In high school I tried to do the same thing, I got it for a while but once I quit learning I lost it...and fast! It just goes to show us that Heavenly Father wants us to have talents and He will help us but once we quit working at it...He can take it away just as fast. Kinda sad, but seeing as how you have a piano that you adore you will get really good at the piano. Good luck!! Sure do love ya!

Amy Sorensen said...

I'm proud of you, and impressed, and still wishing I could have fit that piano in my front room!!! Want to be the pianist for Nathan's baptism???? ;) GO BECKY!

Lucy said...

This is awesome! I don't know if I'd have the heart to learn to read music as an adult. It most certainly is a new language. Best of luck to you. It is worth it, in the end. The most beautiful language of all.