Do you ever look at someone and think, "I wish I loved anything as much as they love what they're doing right now."
I use to be one of those people. Well both of those people actually. When I was a music major in college I was completely absorbed in music. It was 24/7 of performing, analyzing, studying, and practicing music. I loved every minute of it, even when I hated it.
Yet I had days where I would be the other person too. I'd watch how other majors would get to spend their days and instantly get jealous. I mean have you ever seen a Computer Engineer correctly code something they've been working on for months? It's like witnessing a shooting star, rare and brillant.
I didn't always want music to be my life. Believe it or not I almost quit when I was 13. I was convinced that I was going to be an astronaut, but somewhere along the way music won me over.
They say if it's the first thing you think about in the morning and the last thing you think about before you fall asleep then you're in love. That was me and music. It's all I talked about, all I learned about, and all I wanted to do (besides sleep.) I was obsessed, and it was 100% just a honey moon phase.
My decision to make music my life wasn't taken lightly by any means. In fact if I wanted to make my life infinitely easier I'd just become an astronaut like I originally planned. I had to fight to study music at every turn. It wasn't just my parents I was fighting either, it was school counselors, professors trying to make sure it was the right decision, barrier exams that were nearly impossible to pass, and so much more.
To say it was a hard road is a bit of an understatement. Where I went to school you have to know it's what you want or you won't stay. My class started off with 75 bright eyed and bushy tailed freshman. It graduated seven. You read that right seven. A typical day was three plus hours of daily practice on top of 6:00am daily quartet rehearsals, along with several hours of required ensembles, all while being a full time student. If you weren't going to succeed they were going to make sure you'd fail.
Fast forward four years. It's my last year of music school and I no longer eat, sleep, and breathe just music, it's now music education. I sleep more than I eat and I teach more than I play. I was no longer in the honey moon phase and now into the Dear God what am I doing with my life phase. (Enter Gap Year)
Forward three more years. I'm happy to announce that we are nearly seven years from the beginning of my journey into making music the rest of my life. I'm still madly in love with what I do. I'm no longer in a honey moon phase or a panicked I made the wrong choice phase, but in a comfortable this is what I love phase. I teach music and I can't tell you how great it is to talk about what you love all day.
I guess what I'm trying to say is...it's worth it. Fight for your passion. Do what you love. The people/things that are making it a hard road are just there to help you. Think of it this way.
If this is as hard as it gets, you are going to OWN it.
My partner in crime affectionately named The Phoenix. My major instrument, the saxophone.