This past week I got my hair cut and highlighted for the first time in Europe. As my British hairdresser was foiling my hair (at least the aliens won’t be able to read my mind), Beethoven’s 5th came on the radio. She kind of laughed and mentioned how hard it was to play. As the conversation unfolded, she revealed that her hobby was playing her flute with a local symphony. The director had been begging someone to take up the French Horn, as they had nobody to play it. She said she would take home the orchestra’s horn to see if she could get any sound to come out.
“I got some noise to come out of it, and I thought it was such a beautiful instrument, so I took it up,” she told me, as she continued sticking tin foil all over my head.
She went on to tell about how, a few years later she found herself first chair playing Beethoven’s 5th Symphony. “You’re never too old to start something new,” she told me as if it was nothing. “Music is so important.”
Later that week I found myself across from dinner with a friend. This person was talking about my goals for the year, and pointing a finger at me, they said, “You don’t care about your goals for the year. Do you know why? Because they’re easy for you. You are capable of so much more! You could be doing so much more.”
I swallowed hard hearing this, and these words echoed in my mind for the next few days, and in fact are still resounding with me. My friend was right. I didn’t pick up the figurative French Horn, something brand new, with a simple joy of learning something new and a passion for music. No, I found things that were easy for me and attainable. [pullquote]I didn’t pick up the figurative French Horn, something brand new, with a simple joy of learning something new and a passion for music. No, I found things that were easy for me and attainable.[/pullquote]
“If you had set a goal that you thought you couldn’t reach, you would be fighting to reach it, and you would. You know you would.”
What a gift to have such a woman present me with such a beautiful story of a goal that she reached, something she did for pure enjoyment and the satisfaction of learning something; the joy of being able to contribute something.
What a gift to have a friend present me with the challenge and encouragement that I am capable of such feats.
All of us are, aren’t we? Isn’t it true that each one of us, with discipline and drive and passion, can do things that we have only dreamed of? Why do we dream of things and never move to see them fulfilled?
It is a question I am still trying to answer, and one that I am trying to eradicate from my own life.