Life Shifting | Overstuffed Overstuffed

Monday, April 26, 2010

Life Shifting

For the last few months, Bria has been learning how to shift (change the hand position on the violin).  When the idea was first introduced to her, it came as a bit of a shock--she is not a child who enjoys change.  She resisted quite a bit, too, telling me that she could play perfectly fine in first position, she's played like that for years, and why should it have to be any different now?

Of course, her teacher didn't see things quite the same way, and persevered in teaching her how to shift.  Slowly, but surely, she's warmed up to the idea and is even beginning to see how it actually makes her playing easier, not more difficult.  She has more flexibility, and will be able to play a much larger range of notes when she masters all of the positions.

But it's still hard, and it still requires a lot of practice and concentration.  It can be frustrating for her, but in the end, it will totally be worth it.


First position

First position



Third position

Third position

I was watching her in her lesson last week (hey look!  My cell phone camera again), and thinking about how we have those same types of shifts in life.  Many times we get very comfortable in our positions--as employees, students, wives, mothers, friends, family members--only to have to learn how to change everything at what seems like a moment's notice.  Suddenly we have a new job, we've graduated from college, we get married, we have a baby, we move to another state, or we gain a sister-in-law or two.

I've had a lot of life shifts this past year, and while sometimes I really hate them and long for my comfort zone, mostly I realize that they make me a better person in the end.   I have had to do things that I might not have done if we didn't move to Michigan.  I have had to get out of my shell and make friends.  I have had to make myself be a better person.

And it's often hard.

But in the end, it is the best thing for me, and very worth it.

21 comments :

  1. Gosh-I could never even adjust to first position. I'm totally jealous of the skills she's getting:)

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  2. When Sage passed away it changed everything.....it took me back to the bare bones of everything.....I felt like a child barely learning how to walk again and find my baring. Somethings I handled fine it was okay to let them go. Others things, I got angry about and could not change back. Other things I had to grow into. Everyday I am changing for the better if I let it. I decided I like change when I decide we need a change. Changing my life to conform to Lords will for me has been hard. They talked about the story in #'s about the profits Donkey talking to him because he was not willing to listen to the Lord. I just pray that I keep my heart open, to hear that still small voice and I don't need a donkey to come in and tell me what to do! I am learning to trust the Lords ways everyday and just roll with it! Rambling...sorry.

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  3. i always think i hate change - but i love moving the furniture around in my house all the time! i think i just don't like hard changes - but you are soo right, in the end we learn something and it makes us better when we do. you are the cutest! i can't imagine you "making yourself a better person" - you are soo great already!

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  4. Sometimes I forget where my comfort zone even is. :)

    I don't like change at all.
    Shocking, I know. :)

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  5. I didn't even KNOW that one shifted while playing the violin.

    And your analogy is SPOT on!

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  6. I completely understand what you are saying. We, too, have had many shifts this last year, from a new baby to a new business. Probably the most difficult shift, for me, has been learning to live on less than what seems possible. Though it's been extremely difficult, I've learned things that I couldn't have learned any other way. I now can cook completely from food storage, which has taught me how to live a healthier lifestyle, and I can see the blessings of following the admonitions of the prophets. My family has also grown closer with the trials, rather than further away. These shifts are all about growth and are for our good.

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  7. Change IS hard. I have been re-evaluatinn how I am as a mother and decided I want to be a different kind of mom that I have been in the last couple of years...nothing specific has happened; I just have evolved to a place that I'm not liking. Has that ever happened to anyone else, or is it just me? Your story helps inspire me to keep trying hard to be better. Thank you!

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  8. Good for Bria!

    Yeah, shifting is a beast! It rocks their little violin world to the core, just like the first time we play low 2 in book 1. It's a little sad really: I tell my violin students that we spend all our time in violin learning hard and fast rules (ie where to place your left hand on the violin,) and just when we get really good at that rule, we change it!

    Love the analogy. We're doing a lot of shifting right now. A lot. Reminding myself that it will all be worth it.

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  9. My beautiful Bria! How I love her!! She is an inspiration of pressing forward and hard work, no matter how hard it is.

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  10. Unfortunately my comfort zone is totally unproductive. Change IS uncomfortable, but at least it means progress. (I'm really only reminding myself.)

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  11. great analogy! so what app are you using on your phone? lol. or is it not an iphone?

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  12. I feel like I am shifting constantly, but I guess the best shifting is when you make the choice and then feel good about it.

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  13. It's so true--life is so often about hard adjustments. But we are so much more capable in the end. I admire anyone who can play violin. I took lessons and wanted to play so very badly but it was just way too much multi-tasking for me. Who knew that you had to do 100 things at once just to make one note?

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  14. i just love how you take everyday events and turn it into a beautiful thought!

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  15. But are we still not allowed to clap for Bria?

    She's awesome and so are you. I've lived in my neighborhood for over 2 years & I still think I haven't stepped out of my box as much as I should.

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  16. I really loved the way you phrased this. I am one who likes little changes (rearranging furniture) and dreads big changes (moving out of state). But you're right. All of them do seem to make me the person I'm supposed to be!

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  17. Funnily enough, as I get older I get more okay with change than not. I'm excited about moving this summer to a new house and a new ward. I just love the growing it causes.

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  18. My daughter played the violin when she was younger. Your post reminded me of those first days of her learning to shift. It was hard. But it does get easier, which is fun to watch happen.

    Life changes are a little more tricky. The older I get, the harder time I have changing things around me. It is always a good thing to grow and progress. Sometimes it is really hard though.

    Great post!

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  19. Wonderful analogy, Lara. I'm trying to learn to appreciate my shifts instead of feeling totally lost in them. ;)

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  20. Wow! That analogy is perfect for me too. Love it!

    Good Job Bria!

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  21. I grew up playing the piano (and in some ways it's similar to learning the violin—as in, you have to devote years and years to it!)—and I feel like learning a difficult instrument and making big changes in life are both a lot like learning a new language. At first it feels like the hardest thing in the world, and every new thing is a huge challenge—but then, all of a sudden, it clicks. And it's as natural as breathing. And then we wonder how we ever thought it was so difficult.

    That same steep learning curve is there for so many things, but I feel like you're at the top of this particular curve now, and you've emerged even better equipped to handle the next challenge. Maybe now's the time to look back and admire the view from the top.

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