Thursday, January 25, 2007

The More I Know the People of God, the Better I Like My Dogs

None of this has anything to do with knitting today. I’m just completely, utterly, totally in a Bad Place, and I don’t know what to do about it, beyond writing and hoping maybe I’ll figure out a thing or two along the way.

I sing. I have done so competently and seriously for over twenty years, and have offered my alleged “gift” in various church choirs in that time. I should feel fulfilled and satisfied, as if I were doing something I was meant to do. I should feel as if I am spiritually connected and filled with praise. I should LOVE what I am doing.

Well, those “shoulds” are for an ideal world.

Not for the first time, I am wishing I had never, ever been given an ability to do music. It seems that for each rare moment of delight, I have spent at least thousand times that in gut-wrenching pain, feeling worthless, unloved, unappreciated, unsupported, overworked, and ostracized.

I spend at least a portion of every day in every week dreading going to rehearsal on Thursday nights. I don’t look forward to Sunday services at all. I want out, but instead will dutifully go through the motions and pretend nothing is wrong because I am TERRIFIED of where a confrontation will lead.

Things may be said that can never, ever be taken back or forgiven.

A friendship will most likely be lost. Possibly two friendships, actually. In one case, perhaps there never really was a friendship to begin with. Perhaps I made another stunning error in who to choose to trust and befriend. I have a bad track record in that, and I am afraid to have it confirmed again, lest I feel like even more of a loser/moron than I already do most of the time.

Would I be this much of an idiot if not for music? More than anything, what I need right now is to step back and not perform for awhile. I have reason to believe that my need will not be honored, much less met. There will be a price. What I have spent so many years doing may come to an end forever.

Am I ready to embrace “forever”? Can I really live without offering music? Am I really able to fold up my tent and go home? Because there will be no opportunity to backslide. The bridge will not be burnt. It will be nuked.

I am scared to death.


the fiddlin' fool said...

I'm so sorry to hear you're going through rough times. Music certainly can do that to someone, and to a certain degree I know where you are coming from.

It sounds to me that you really haven't found the right church, if that's indeed what you are looking for. I rang bells for two years at a church whose congregation, minister, and service I couldn't have cared less about, all because they had a good music ministry. I eventually gave it up because I realized that "a music ministry doth not a church make." It was hard, certainly, but I was fortunate enough to stumble into the right church (for me, at least) not long afterwards.

The most important thing to remember is that you can make music in tons of different ways, and only you know what's going to make you happy. I gave up classical music for folk music, and I don't regret it one bit. That doesn't mean that there aren't people in my life who are disappointed in my decision (family, friends back home, etc.), but I knew it wasn't for me after I got my performance degree. It saddens me slightly, but I don't look back and I know that I absolutely made the right decision.

So listen to yourself and do what you know you want to do, and how you want to do it. And don't be afraid of change. Just embrace what you really want, and it will eventually set you free.

Knitman said...

Oh Mad Angel. You are just fine the way you are. You do NOT need the approval of others and you do not need to be subservient or a door mat to be liked.
No matter who you are there will be people who like and love you and those who will not. So just be yourself!
Do what YOU want to do. treat others well, as I am sure you do, but don'e put up with shoddy treatemtn from others. Life is short and you cannot waste it on such people. Be yourself, share your gift, and don't give your power away to to others. they don't live with your conscience, you do! And ti is the only one you have to answer to.
Just live, girl!