Monday, November 5

10 Days Left: Music

Today's countdown glimpse is on music in my life. 10 days left.

I was singing about the time I could talk, and music has been a love of my life ever since.

It began with Primary songs. My brain processes music strangely - it gets stuck in my memory forever. It means that I don't often listen to the radio because I don't want some random song playing in my head for the rest of my life. I can still remember when the Spanish sister missionaries came into Primary when I was a sunbeam and taught us to sing "I Am Like a Star" in Spanish... and somehow can still sing it with all the right words.

The Primary songs have stayed with me and come to mind when I need them most. My favorites? "I'm Trying to Be Like Jesus," and "My Heavenly Father Loves Me."

Primary songs moved into Disney music and Broadway musicals. I was in musicals through school and the community, and singing combined with dancing and acting and became a part of my life. I went to All-State, learned to play a few musical instruments, danced on teams, won awards, and placed in competitions. So when I got to BYU, I joined a dance team and started taking classes in preparation to be a music/dance/theater major. If I have a talent, I should develop it and share it, right? But I could never stick myself in a box, so I moved down the line to do a double major in science.

That didn't last very long, though, as I felt torn in multiple directions. I was at BYU and would never have the opportunity to take all the elective classes again. But double majoring and taking all the electives I wanted would require me to take 23 credits each semester and attend multiple spring and summer terms. Which would wreck my social life and club participation... and I wasn't willing to drop my electives across the board or my focus on science. So I dropped music with the hope that I could pick it back up later in life.

I've never really been able to do that. What I didn't realize at the time was that I was walking away from a network of people and relationships I'd never really have again. I could take voice lessons in the community, but the world of music is a world of who you know... and I became an unknown. I've been in musicals, opera, and film since, written songs and done some recording, but it doesn't ever stick. And today, most of the people I work with don't even know. Some days I wonder what would have happened had I gone down a different road. I still have trouble going to musicals because I want to be on stage. I made all the right decisions when they happened, though, so I don't usually regret it. The ultimate reality is that music fell out of the center of my life and it has never fallen back in.


  1. That is probably for the best. Music is a really, really tough field for supporting a family. Trust me. We are now changing careers because of how hard it has been for us. Our oldest son will be a senior when my husband begins working in his new field -- and we will be paying on loans from the education for both fields of work. sigh. I think music is a wonderful hobby. And for me, the quintessential idealist who once proclaimed that she could do anything if she set her mind to it, that is a big statement. :)

    1. Yeah. And it's not often the best environment for raising a family either. Night after night on stage and practices stretching late past their due affirmed that for me.

  2. I had a similar career decison except it was in History instead of Music. I don't regret changing direction because I was able to pursue History as a hobby.

  3. You need to look up a song called "Where's the line to see Jesus". My ya-ya sister in Ontario (she is a minister) sent me the link to hear this song. It sends chills up and down my spine every time I listen to it. Beautiful.


  4. Be glad that you had it for a little while. Some of us had other things to deal with while growing up and into our young adult lives. The only chance we have to do things we love are by picking them up here and there, and savoring what little we have now.

  5. WHY DO WE DO THIS TO OURSELVES!? My brain is not the brain of a scientist... Yet I majored in Microbiology at BYU, attempted a minor in Humanities but had to give it up, and went off to get a PhD at the U. Only then did it hit me that I was terribly unhappy! So I got a Masters and got out.

    You know what I did as a child? I wrote poems, wrote plays (in English and Spanish) choreographed dances, was part of the drama club in my school, and sang made-up songs in the shower. I wanted to learn the violin but never had the opportunity...

    Why the heck did I go for science! Not that it isn't good, I love science, it is awesome... But when I listen to any symphony or watch a play, it hurts me a little.


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