Tuesday, May 17, 2005

Tone-deaf Dad

Last night was the first performance of the 28th Annual Spring Concert of the Orcas Choral Society. We have another one at 2:00 today. I had a solo, which is pretty much unheard of in any choir for a first-season member. It went very well. There's a little part that I occasionally mess up (and cover very well) and I didn't mess it up, which makes me happy. The choir is made up almost entirely of retired people and I think they've seen me a little bit as a sweet granddaughter in this whole situation. I would say that some 60 percent of the choir has told me how good my solo sounds or what a good voice I have or patted me on the shoulder as I walked back to the group when I was done. They also audibly sigh and murmur appreciatively when I finish. It's a little embarassing.

I wrote that on Sunday. As that day progressed, I got more and more light-headed and grumpier and grumpier. In fact, I didn't go to the party after the concert because I didn't have the energy to be that granddaughter character. Also, I'm not ready to go back to grown-up parties yet. Grown-up parties are the ones where people stand around in little groups and make small talk while eating good food and drinking tasteful amounts of wine. My suburban life was full of grown-up parties. I even liked them. But since being here, I've gotten to go back to the type of parties that I pretty much missed when I was younger. The amounts of wine and other substances consumed are not tasteful, the music is loud so talking is difficult and there's more running and laughing than standing and talking. I'm sure I will like grown-up parties again, but I'm just not ready to yet.

It turns out that I was grumpy and light-headed because I hadn't been keeping track of what I was eating and, for maybe the first time in my life, I kind of forgot to eat as much as I should have. This is somewhat of a similar syptom to my total lack of ability to wash my dishes. Anne Lamott writes in her books Traveling Mercies, "[The man who worked for the Dalai Lama said] that they believed when a lot of things start going wrong all at once, it is to protect something big and lovely that is trying to get itself born – and that this something needs for you to be distracted so that it can be born as perfectly as possible. " I'm fairly certain that my brain is working something out without telling me and as a result, my unconcious mind is not letting me do the dishes or cook a good meal for myself because it needs that room to work in.

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