One of my friends loves to quote that passage from Ecclesiastes, and it feels appropriate right now. The season is spring–that beautiful time when life begins to burst forth again (less fun for the pollen sufferers, of which I am one, but hey: there’s always an antihistamine for that…), everything is green and springing and full of promise. And it’s also beginning to wend its way toward the Solstice (one month away!) and the onset of summer. For me, this has been a season of change, growth and rebirth as well.
As followers of this blog will know, at this time last year I was in a serious funk. I hadn’t practiced for a couple of months and was quite despondent, feeling isolated, sad and alone. I really didn’t want to sing at all, had lost my relationship to my singing and maybe even to myself. It seems that I am in a similar space with the singing piece, though not with myself. I am allowing myself to focus on other things–the recovery of my heart from heartbreak, the transformation of my relationships to my students (so many graduating this year, so a beginning of more personal and fruitful collaborations in some ways), a rethinking of my teaching paradigm. I recognize that the process is the path, not the product. I am questioning everything about the way we assess students and their work, the way we think about practice (drudgery rather than a passion for discovery and an awakening of curiosity), the emphasis on culminating performances as the cumulative “evidence” of learning success. I am moving away from all of this, and in so doing, rediscovering my True North. On every level.
There is beauty in discovery of the finest detail of every moment. The practice, the journey is the path. There is no end to learning, to feeling, to growing. This is the essence of what this season is for me. Happy spring into summer, everyone!