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Krista Moyer

How the Guitar Made me Appreciate my Progress

May 1, 2013 at 1:21 PM

My oldest son (age 10) took his first guitar lesson on Thursday. For the better part of a week now, our practice time has been jokingly dubbed “dueling strings” by the rest of the household. It has been quite enlightening for me. Firstly, in that guitar isn’t something you can just pick up and play as easily as I thought. I tried his exercises, and they are challenging! And secondly, that in 11 months of violin lessons, I have come much further than I was giving myself credit for.

As a pre-teen, my oldest boy can be emotional, and easily frustrated. But during practice, I recognize the source of his feelings and can sympathize with them. On reflection, I noticed that the basics of my instrument no longer generate frustration. In fact, while #1 boy is struggling with figuring out which fret he is on and what finger to use, I don’t even look at my fingerboard anymore. As he works out how to make his pinkie finger curve correctly, I’m flying through a sweet little gavotte. My playing might not be at the level I would prefer; but I no longer have to wonder how to draw the bow without making a horrible noise.

Timing is everything. My son beginning his music lessons just now comes at the perfect point in my musical development to give me an appreciation for how much I have learned. I think I’m going to enjoy watching him grow in his guitar playing as much as I am enjoying learning the violin.

And maybe now he can sympathize with my frustration with vibrato instead of laughing at me.

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