Welcome to this summer series on questions and possibilities for a new era in our personal lives, professional lives, the choral landscape, and in society! I’m so glad you’re here for the journey.
Originally today’s post was going to be content from an interview with church musician and composer Karen Marrolli. However, due to extenuating circumstances, I’ve needed to pivot. I was all set to write the post when I received an alarming call. Several hours later and after a report to a police officer, I realized I had been targeted in a scam. Luckily, I only think the scammers got away with taking some money and not sensitive personal information. In hindsight, I realized I should have hung up immediately, but it sounded very plausible in the moment. Unfortunately, sometimes life is the toughest teacher.
So this post is going to be a little shorter than normal. I’m still a little shaken, but there are a few takeaways I’ve been reminded of in the past several hours.
It’s good to acknowledge my own limits. I highly value reliability, which includes getting things done on time. I’m certainly adept and churning out content at the last minute. Back in the day I think I finished some music history papers just in the nick of time 🙂 However, in this instance, I was stuck. Not only was I under a time crunch, but emotionally I was drained. I asked my good friend, colleague, and fellow blogger Dr. Shannon Gravelle for some advice, who suggested I could write about events today. Brilliant idea! On a side note, I highly recommend checking out her very insightful blog posts. Needless to say, I decided to accept my limits and acknowledge that I can’t do everything.
Speaking of doing everything, it feels like I wear so. many. hats. All the time. One of the hats that doesn’t get worn as much as it needs to be is “human”. Especially in a pandemic, leaning into one’s own humanity is a great gift not only to myself, but to others around me.
One of the downsides of the pandemic, especially in the early days, was being in lock down for so long. Regular support networks may have faltered or vanished. On the other hand, I need a constant reminder that we’re not truly alone and that there are people out there waiting to cheer us on, give advice, laugh with, or provide a shoulder to cry. Having that support network is so important, especially in challenging times such as during a pandemic.
This evening has been very emotionally charged. I’ve found it helpful to have some practices I can lean on to help center myself. Among other things, there are a number of albums or playlists on Spotify I’ll listen to. I’ve taken a particular liking to “Night” by Ola Gjeilo:
If you enjoy that and aren’t familiar with his choral music, check it out!
Finally, I thought I would give you taste for next week’s blog post, based on an interview with Karen Marrolli. She writes extremely well for adult church choirs and also composes engaging solos. Although this video is of a solo, entitled Come and See, it will become a choral piece in the future. While the song was written with COVID in mind, I think the message is wonderful for all kinds of occasions.