Why the Violin?

violinYes, I really did decide to learn how to play the violin recently.  Picking up a new instrument, especially something like the violin, is not something that people typically do at my age.

So why did I do it?

I suppose I could cop out with the easy answers, like Why not? and Because I wanted to, but it’s deeper than that.

I’ve watched violinists since I was a little girl, amazed at the beautiful music they made and how it seemed so magical.  How could someone make sounds as beautiful as that simply by running a bow across some strings? I wanted to do that, but I kept hearing about how difficult it was. I doubted that I’d be able to play well.  So I never tried.

That was a running theme in my life for many years.  If I couldn’t do something well, I wouldn’t even try. As a result, I did everything well. Well, everything that I tried. I avoided failure. I even avoided the chance of failure for a long time.

Well, it took a long time, but I’m over that now, and I’m not afraid of failure anymore.  In fact, my whole perspective on failure has changed.  Nowadays, I don’t believe it’s possible to fail at the violin as long as I try.

The only way to fail is not to try at all.

When I told my husband I wanted to play the violin, he was surprised because I’ve never talked about wanting to play.  It was one of those secrets I kept buried deep inside me. Even he didn’t know about it.

I wrote a post once asking what you would do if you knew you couldn’t fail. I asked myself the same question recently, and the answer that popped into my head was, Play the violin.

So, I rented a violin and started taking some online lessons.  Believe it or not, I can play! Carnegie Hall is not in my immediate future, but that’s okay.  I’m doing this for myself.

If I had never tried, I would still be thinking that playing the violin was something I couldn’t do. Now I know I can. It’s time I revisit my old beliefs about what I thought I could do and what I thought I couldn’t. Maybe there’s another dream I can fulfill?

What would do if you knew you couldn’t fail?