A nerve racking moment! (A proud father!)

in parenting •  last month  (edited)


It' s a moment that is always nerve racking for a parent (well, also for the child!)... As a musician, I'm happy with my relationship with the stage. Everyone gets nervous, but how you harness and use that extra energy is a skill that we have either been trained to do, or that we have come to grips with in our own way. On a side note, it is not usually a part of the regular standard training of a musician, which is weird... each teacher has differing ways of how to teach (or not to teach) how to cope with the concept of stage fright. It's a situation in which everyone has a different and uniquely personal way of dealing with it....

Anyway, for myself, I'm content and comfortable... However, when it is someone else, and especially some that you care deeply about... then I get hellishly nervous! You can only try and prepare them up to a point, but after that... they are free to learn and stand up on their own two feet... or in this case, sit and play!

So, as my girl got on stage for her first solo in front of a large group of parents and fellow students and teachers... my heart was racing and I was incredibly apprehensive. I know that she was up for the challenge from a technical piano playing point of view... and I knew that she knew in her conscious mind how to deal with the stage... but all of these things can suddenly melt away in the blink of an eye... for no particular reason, as dread and fear takes over and we give in to the flight portion of the fight or flight response.

Well... in the end, it turned out very well. She played incredibly well, and later told me she was nervous, but she was brave and did it! Of course, I say this with some parental bias, but I think she absolutely kicked arse! She really played like a little pianist, and not like an awkward child at the piano. There was a sureness and deftness to her stage manner and piano playing that I found surprisingly impressive.

There were other kids who opted to play in groups and unfortunately, one girl who did not manage to deal with stage fright. There is nothing worse than watching someone succumb to this fear.... As a musician, you really feel quite deeply how hard it is... after all, even if you are comfortable on stage, this is something that is always there... to deny otherwise would be foolish, but you have to have trust in the techniques that you have developed over your life to help deal with it. However, as a child, you've not had the time or experience to do this... and if not handled well, it can lead to a horrible mental block and a terrible memory.

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Hey, @bengy.

Congratulations on your daughter's piano playing. Do they still call things like that a recital? Maybe that's too formal. Anyway, I'd say she's had a wonderful example to follow, and doubt your natural abilities and work ethic have either become a part of who she is, or have rubbed off on her.

I don't know that I have the equivalent experience, which is fine, since what I do is write and neither of my boys are interested in that. But i do remember, obviously, feeling good about them accomplishing different tasks or milestones that they worked hard on to achieve. It's part of being a parent, as you said.

Does she want to become a professional musician?


No, recitals they are still called! Although, not for kids normally... it puts them off! Every kid undergoes different tests of ability.... she's not so keen on testing her sporting ability!

Anyway, at the moment she is way too young to know what she wants to do... but from her parents, she probably has no idea what a real work life looks like!


It sounds like to me she has paths to choose from, including her own, which I think is good. There's still some time to be deciding all of that, and some of us keep searching for what we want to do well into our 40s and 50s. :)

re: real work

I'm hoping she doesn't have to know what a 'real work life' is. I mean, if you're talking 9 to 5 and being someone else's employee, I don't know. I find that all rather boring and unfulfilling myself, even if it can be stable and offer benefits.

In some cases, your brain has room to breathe and explore its limits, but not nearly as often as you're just the team playing cog on a wheel of corporate machinery. Dull, dull, dull, dull, dull. :)


I don't know... real work, sometimes I do crave the stability it offers! Even in an artistic life, you often still have to work in a team if you play in a larger group of musicians... I know that there are many musicians who turn jaded and dull from that as well!


There's definitely something to be said for stability, @bengy. I think we all want to achieve a comfortable amount of steady income. But even working for someone else doesn't always last forever. Things change there, too.

I guess there's a peace of mind to what extent it really exists, versus having the time to do the things you'd like to do and the resources to do it. Most of us seem to run into that problem all the time.

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can imagine you being nervous there and she most likely is being super chill hahahah


Yep... She looked completely in control... But she did tell me afterwards that she was a bit nervous!

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That is one kick ass kid you have! Well done for overcoming fears and dealing with stage fright. I can relate to that when I have DJ live at a festival. It's one of those where the only way to deal with it is to do it over and over again. This will have given her tremendous experience and hope she will use it to kick on and kick more ass!

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Congrats. As good as her father.

congratulated. thanks for share your memories.

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