*warning: impending run-ons just pretend we're having a phone conversation and I never came up for air see I warned ya*
So, today I am sitting there literally trying not to cry when the Physical Therapist measured my fingers because I hurt my already mangled mess of an arm at 8am this morning when a huge ugly Granddaddy spider crawled up on my good arm and just sat there like an unwanted sleeve which caused me to scream and instinctively brush it off in a hurry with the broken arm (sigh) which hurt like Hades, and all day it throbbed which is why I was ready to smack the first person who touched it...when he, the grand leader of fun "activities" in the space I now call my PT (Physical Torture) room with artificial legs and knees and braces just hanging around on the walls all day like a Spare Parts For People store (Knees R Us) tells me to get up and lean against the wall and show him my rotation exercise. It was lame. Less rotation of the forearm than last week. Pitiful. It just won't turn. Wrist motion improved, swelling improved, fingers improved. Forearm is stiff as a board. I can't turn my hand over either way. I worked and worked for days to move three pieces of foam into peg holes?! I am not amused. So I'm thinking...what good are moving fingers and wrist if they're crooked? With bones like that I'm doomed to play the waltz and only the waltz for the rest of my life. Big 'ole pity party happening there against the torment wall.
I can't. I can't. I can't. I CAN'T!!
Then I hear a woman's voice, "You need to fix her up right, Doctor. She plays beautifully."
I turned to see a middle-aged woman I kind of recognized but couldn't place.. Hmmm...who..who...is....Mary! From my old crazy church twenty-five years ago. Mary! Works here? At my physical therapy? And then it hit me and I said, "Your mother. She taught me to play chords."
And here stood Mary looking all the world like her mother. I told her how her mother insisted I learn to "play by ear" like she did and how I told her "I can't! Why do I want or need to do that? Just write down the notes and I'll play anything you want me to, or give me a hymn book, but I can't play your way. That's your gift, not mine."
She fostered my respect for self-taught brilliance and taught me to honor those unapologetic folks who know they have something special and are greatly blessed, and instead of tooting their own horns in the competitive cesspool of fame-starved sames, they choose instead to share it, to give it away, to pass it on because they know deep inside what "it" is. And even if they can't teach you to totally possess what they possess because that high-brow music snob judgment keeps you from reaching for it while you're looking down your educated nose at their genius....well...she taught me that sometimes it's best to leave your book-learning at the door and just show up.
With all my years of formal classical training, I would not be the musician I am today without her playing - and praying - hands.
And now, in the middle of my fear of losing that, in the land of broken plastic replacement parts, was her daughter, out of nowhere it seemed, reminding me of where the music really comes from in the first place and that I am just an instrument, as all artists worth their waltz should be no matter the genre - as she was - before her music was sadly silenced here on earth...and how, if God, in His attempt to shut my whining mouth and get my attention, could see to it that her daughter would show up on this particular day when I needed to remember that replacement parts are only for temporal flesh, easily put on and easily taken off, and that they have absolutely nothing to do with what bubbles up through your soul on a fine day of four-handed playing you see, then I don't have any grounds to feel sorry for my peg-holed self.
"Just give it some time," she said. "You'll get better."
Funny. That's just what her mother said.
Didn't you hear her?
Join us for BlogBlast For Peace Nov 4, 2012