20 March 2011

playing by ear

Della got my ick and this week was a week of snot and chest coughs, a trip to the doc (she's fine) and disrupted sleep. It has also been a week of her talking talking talking (LOVELY), babble that sounds like language, loudly! with lots of tongue. She is adorable beyond words, beyond the snot, and I am completely smitten.

I am still snotty and coughing, and the headaches, oh my. So apparently, this is a full 2 week bug and I now officially invite it to leave, thankyouverymuch. Don't let the door hit you, etc etc.

I've been quite quiet here and on the internet in general lately, and I am so sorry to not be out and about and reading and commenting. I am in the midst of a rather concerted push for alternatives for work stuff and house stuff, and when I am free-ish (like now) I generally spend it frantically researching, calling, writing, and feeling a wide range of things from despair to something more like resignation.

I'm pooped, people.

So--on a happy note creatively speaking, I sold two paintings (thank you loved ones!) and got some cards printed but not yet posted, and some prints made but they arrived oddly sized so I will crop them and post them soon I hope. They are not what I wanted so they'll be discounted. I look forward to more painting in my future, but that will need to wait until the little one is in a backpack. Right now she touches all I touch, amazing. I actually can't wait to paint with her.

We still have snow almost everywhere, and some quite deep. The garden is being uncovered slowly, and seed heads are emerging, and I am imagining that soon there will be greening. We walked today, and it was colder than I expected, and I felt myself holding myself tightly. I am looking forward to walks where my body just moves, and I am unaware of it.

I keep dreaming I am back in school, and I guess I am.

A year ago, I went to an amazing workshop in NYC led by the incomparable Jen Lee, and met a wonderful woman, Helen, who plays piano and teaches among many other fiercely and fabulously creative endeavors. (Please go see her site, she is hosting a getaway in the Moors in August). She and I had a wonderful visit as part of the workshop, and, in talking, it came about that she had been classically trained as a pianist, but did not know how to play by ear. Then she discovered an online class, and indeed DID learn to play by ear, and it freed her to express her own music-- and now she teaches other people to do the same. Well, I cried, actually. I had not known how attached I was to the idea that I could never be musical because I cannot play an instrument, cannot read music, cannot carry a tune, and am non-rhythmic. But, there she was saying it was possible. Knowing it was possible. And I felt my heart crack open against all that I thought that I knew.

Fast forward to now: Here I am, improvising. A life so tightly held, planned to avoid possible losses and other out-of-control-nesses, carefully tended, broken open, knocked askew, not what I expected, house stuff and work stuff, wondrous baby stuff and Doug stuff, my creative self yearning, my reality and pragmatic selves barking orders and waving frantically, and me?

so I lay in bed last night and told Doug, when I thought I would learn to play by ear, I guess I just did not expect it to be EVERYTHING.


Sprogblogger said...

I cannot wait to hear your new song when it's ready to come out into the world...

Elizabeth said...

Hey Kate -- thinking of you, that's all, just checking in and sending love. Daffodils finally started blooming around here, what a thing.

Emily Erin said...


Saw this & thought of you.