Musical Mama Blog
Proving, day after diaper filled day, that music and motherhood can mix.
I’ve always wanted a job I couldn’t wait to get to and didn’t want to leave. And I’d never really found it. After graduating college I discovered that not challenging myself on a regular basis turned my brain into a boring mass of jelly containing only factoids like my Netflix password and where to get fairly good local pizza. So on and off for the past bunch of years I've been searching for that thing. My Career.
The capital C is very important here - it signifies the pinnacle of professional challenge and intellectual and creative excitement. A Career is in sharp contrast to the long string of ill-fitting jobs I’ve done over the years. These have ranged from retail and secretarial work to game programming and stock investing (wow, you actually need money to invest in the stock market!). This is not to disparage these jobs per se, it’s just that they always felt like temporary pit stops along the way to finding The Career.
Always in the background, starting since I was about 5, was my love of singing in front of folks, making them laugh or cry or just relax and move a little. Musical theater, choral and a cappella singing, and more recently pop music. I even dabbled in writing pop music. I had a band I hired to play that music for about a year in NYC clubs. On stage I felt more alive, more charged up, than anywhere else. But I never really took music seriously, never threw myself into it to see what would happen. Fear, doubt, inertia - whatever the reason - I never got it off the ground.
But something changed when I had kids. When you have kids there isn’t a lot of room for BS, for waffling around waiting for happiness to find you. You just don’t have the time or the energy for that sort of thing. Having kids made me really look at my life and see what was missing. And out of that came my decision to give music one last try - one big throw myself off the deep end and take it as far as I could go kind of effort. Sure, I could crash and burn, but I would have a whole lot of fun on the way down.
And oh my God, I can’t wait to get to it and don’t want to leave. I’m burning meals and forgetting to pay bills and neglecting my husband all to immerse myself in the multifaceted, crazy-challenging and sometimes maddening process of creating and promoting music. It is so much time and work and it scares the crap out of me because it renders me terribly vulnerable to all the bizarre, irrationally cranky parts of my psyche. It’s about hopes and dreams and throwing your art out there for the world to accept or reject or (cue small part of self dying) just not notice. But that is being an artist. And I have not looked back.
The Job I've Always Wanted
February 4, 2016
“I have written because it fulfilled me. Maybe it paid off the mortgage on the house and got the kids through college, but those things were on the side—I did it for the buzz. I did it for the pure joy of the thing. And if you can do it for the joy, you can do it forever.” - Stephen King