Music to My Heart
“You are so worthy.”
The text came in response to pictures I shared with my husband, Dan, of my beautiful new A clarinet. He had no idea how those simple words touched my heart. I had waited over a year for this amazing hand-crafted instrument, and we had gone to considerable expense to make sure I would have the best instruments available.
All of this might be normal for some people, but for me, the gift of those words ran deep. In my past relationship, this never would have been an option. Putting money toward my professional needs was always a topic that would elicit cutting words and put a damper on any enthusiasm that I had about the purchase of a new instrument or equipment. Clarinets don’t have a long lifespan when they are played professionally- really about ten years or so until they begin to become ‘blown out’, meaning the bore of the instrument changes over time from all of the moisture going through it. Why is it that people in love sometime feel they have to play these games, assert their power over the other? I have come to believe that that sort of behavior has nothing to do with real love. Real love is selfless, giving, empowering.
Today made me recognize yet again the gift of this kind and compassionate man who is my partner in life, appreciate the equality and mutual respect in our relationship. There was never any question- when I mentioned the possibility, he immediately said, “Of course! You need to have the best instruments you can have for your career. Let’s do this.” That he understood not only the importance of having the best equipment, but also the delicate balance of the performer’s mindset was so gratifying. Such a huge part of performance is mental, and to have the confidence of knowing you are playing on the best instruments you can have makes a crucial difference when you are on stage.
Everything impacts that mentality- in a positive or negative way. In the past, I developed some pretty deep scars that have haunted me for years. I have now been with Dan for eleven years, and as I look back on our relationship, I see the many ways in which he has helped to heal not only my heart, but my performer’s spirit as well. I can never repay that debt, but will joyfully spend the rest of my life trying.
The Backun A clarinet is such a gift, and I look forward to stretching my artistic wings with it. But the truly amazing gift is Dan- the gift of love. I will never take that for granted- beautiful music to my heart.