I suppose when it’s been an anniversary week like this, emotions and daily life will wreak havoc with careful plans. It wasn’t just the emotional baggage, but I’ve also dealt with a ton of screaming kiddos during camp for several hours a day all week.
That didn’t help my attempts to be calm, cool, and collected.
I’ve also walked on eggshells, dreading the phone because it might be another depressing remembrance phone call. It made me stay away from home a few days, and then I’d be so tired with a throbbing head that I’d crash on my couch and fall asleep petting dogs while Tom and Jerry reruns were on.
I hate how tired I was all week, and got virtually NO practice in until today. I’m annoyed and angry about that, but I suppose I need to learn how to work through distractions better.
I did a lot of playing today in snippets in prep for tomorrow’s lessons. Not as much progress on the piano as I’d hoped, but I did do a few rounds on it playing a song I’ve wanted to play. Now I will need to spend the next week focusing.
But how can one not let an awful week, a week full of physical and mental exhaustion, derail your efforts to be a better player, writer, whatever? I wanted to figure that out tonight, but even as I type this I’m on the verge of passing out.
If I could do this week over again, I would’ve put post-it notes all over my mirror and the bottom of my TV to remind me that I want to play the guitar and the piano and get really good at them.
I should have spent at least five minutes a pop, then that could’ve led to 10, then 15, etc. each day.
And I should’ve kept a handy pencil to make notes on a chord or fingering to work on. I forgot part of a song I learned in guitar (I think i got some things mixed up, dammit), and forgot the couple chords I was gonna work on (then I remembered).
I did do myself a favor yesterday (though I should’ve done it sooner–I’d thought about it). I went to the guitar store to get one of those pocket-strings devices, something you can extend and practice guitar chord fingerings on.
I wish I’d had it earlier in the week, that way when I needed time away from the kiddos or had a few minutes here and there to try and memorize those guitar chords, I could use that as a refresher and impromptu practice tool.
I’m smacking myself in the head for not getting it sooner. It would’ve worked great, too, because I got to the point where I really needed quiet, and it really doesn’t make much of a sound. That was what sold me on getting it.
Maybe that’s why I wasn’t anxious to pick up an instrument and play all week–I’d been surrounded by an ebbing and flowing cacophony of kid voices and noises all day (after being away from it for so long) that my ears just couldn’t take anymore. The nearly hour-drive back home was spent in silence for over half the time. My head was throbbing and I was so tired I would just crash at home.
I actually fell asleep a couple of times, which naturally screwed up my evening sleep schedule. Last night was the only exception.
I have one more day to go do that off-site camp and that’s Monday, so that’ll be a relief until the week after when I have a mini-camp with a few kiddos that have to be kept separate from the rest because they’re so dang loud and/or whiny in turns. And I’m the only one who can deal with them because everyone else that could is out for training all week.
I’ll be figuring out methods to keep myself playing, even with that crazy week coming up. Maybe some good stuff will come if I sleep on it.
Hmm… worth a shot.
And I’m damned tired anyway.
So tired last night too: I dreamed that I was playing Hungry Shark Evolution on my phone, but the shark was eating music notes mostly.
Weird. Guess my brain was trying to tell me to practice after all.
Glad I did a few hours worth today. Not nearly enough to make up for what I missed, but at least the keyboard stickers I just bought are helping me out as I figured they would. The note names are helpful, but I like these colorful ones I found because they also show what the note would look like on sheet music. Very nice, helps remove the guesswork.
Anyhoo, time to contemplate ideas to keep me going and keep me practicing, even when the rest of me is feeling lazy or depressed. One I plan on doing this week is making a playlist of songs I intend to learn how to play (in whole or part) for my iPod.
Digging through music is so helpful…can’t believe I forgot that.
3 thoughts on “Trying not to let a bad week derail my efforts…”
What kind of camp is it? What is your current job? I guess I have lost track of what you are doing, Hon. Did I tell you my “retirement” is OVER? Shortest in history–one semester. Going back to UHCL in the fall. Come see me; we’ll have supper.
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It was a writing camp offsite, funny enough, for elementary kiddos going into junior high. I do tutorials and reception work otherwise, though I’m the only one flexible enough these days to do the offsite camps. Good thing is it helps the bills. Bad thing is the headaches from the noise and the boring driving.
And I figured the retirement wouldn’t stick. Too much energy, and I imagine early college writers aren’t getting much better on their own (hee hee).
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You are sooo right on all counts!