Friday, 27 July 2012

Music as Medicine

I am a music lover.

My first piano lesson was twenty years ago. It was love at first lesson. I eventually became a piano teacher before moving away to go to school. My days of dedicated practice and classical training are behind me (well, let's say on the back burner at the very least), but it seems that it is during times of chaos that I spend the most time on the piano bench. I have practiced a lot in recent months. My fingers remember old classical favourites, and I can sightread proficiently enough to get through most popular songbooks.

Music has a way of not just evoking memories, but feelings. I find sometimes I'll latch onto a song that seems to match my mood of the moment and play it over and over. Somehow, it makes me feel better. Since separating from my husband, I have moved through the following chronology:

1. Stronger (Kelly Clarkson) & Gotta Be (Des'Ree) This was my "suck it up and get through this" phase shortly after separating.

2. The Glory of Love (Peter Cetera) & God Gave Me You (Blake Shelton) I'm going to call this my "self-inflicted, salt-in-wound" phase. It made me cry to be reminded of the tremendous loss in my life -- somehow, this didn't stop me from playing these songs multiple times per day. People mourn in funny ways, I guess. 

3. Turning Tables (Adele) & Should've Said No (Taylor Swift) Current, apparently somewhat "angry" phase. (As an aside to all the piano players in the crowd, the sheet music book for Adele's 21 album is excellent.)

Anyone else out there use music as medicine?

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