Monday, November 12, 2007

Making Choices

I love to sing. I have sung alto in church choirs since I was in high school. I also sang alto in a small group (three voices on a part) for over ten years. But in the past two years something remarkable has happened. I have gained confidence in my voice. Thanks to the church choir I now sing in and its director, my voice has improved in quality and power. I love singing more than ever. Over the years I have occasionally thought about voice lessons, but the thought has always quickly fled. Weaving is my passion and I have not been willing to give up any weaving time to something else, no matter how much I might lovethat something else. But not this time. Now the choice seems to be much more difficult.

A year ago our choir worked on a piece with an alto solo. We knew that this one particular week, the director was going to select the soloist. Oh, I wanted that so badly and I sang my heart out. And I was chosen. I was stunned. And I said no. I had to. I knew that in public my voice would not hold up. It would betray me. Saying no broke my heart. But I had to. And the alto I thought should have the part in the first place got it.

This alto and I are friends. She claims my singing inspires her to sing better. I claim just the reverse. She didn't do well on that solo by the way, but I would have done much worse. Now she has been chosen to sing a solo from a Handel piece for Christmas. Oh. And she is taking voice lessons. Oh. She explained to me that she does not want to make a fool of herself. She is very smart. And suddenly I now want, really really want, to take voice lessons.

The choice has suddenly become an urgent reality, not just a passing flight of fancy. I know I would put my heart into those lessons and into the practicing those lessons would require. I know that lessons would improve the quality of my singing and might even allow enough courage to grow in me to sing solo. But I wouldn't have to sing solo. The choir is where I belong.

It is hard to make choices when the heart is so much involved. It is hard to say no to something the heart so intensely desires. Deep down I have already made the choice. Deep down, it is the weaving that pulls me. I need to learn to accept the choice my heart has really made. I need to accept that I will always have to live with singing pulling at me. Deep down I have to learn to accept the great satisfaction choir singing gives me and not ask for more.

1 comment:

Dorothy said...

Hi Peg, I wish I could sing! I'm sure it's wonderful and glamorous to sing solo, but the thing about choirs that is so special is the way in which voices of individuals become so much more when they join together. A bit like the threads in your weaving ;) I'm sure your fine alto adds something special to that choir!