I am loved.

February 24, 2010 at 7:58 pm (1)

imperfectionI am, apparently, a sum of the smaller things that define me.

I am a guitarist. I remember the first day I picked up a guitar, as lame as that is. It was my dad’s guitar, and I learned really fast. He taught me four chords, and I played them over and over again. I knew I loved it right away, and that I wanted to get really good at it. Immediately, I was presented with a choice. Either I kept my passion private, and practiced comfortably by myself, or I let what I had discovered a love for define me. The truth is, I did let it define me. Now whether that is a good or bad thing in retrospect … I can’t really decide. I love playing, and if people know me as a guitarist, I’m okay with that. On the other hand though, there is much, much more to who I am, even just musically. The first choice I ever made in my life as I know it, has become the choice that I continue to make every day. There is a time and a place for both, but either way ..

I am a musician. And a good one, at that. On one hand, it is my technical ability that sets me apart, but on the other, its my ability to do what I do without much formal training. When you’re a musician, people see you for whatever it is that they need you for. If they need a technician, I play the technician. If they need the raw, untrained poet, then I play the raw, untrained poet. There is a time and a place for both, but either way ..

I am an artist. Whatever it is that I end up doing musically, be it technically sound or poetically just, it is creative. Whether the music is transcribed down to every little pen stroke of articulation, or if it consists of chord names over empty bars, my art is in it. I express through it, and it makes it better. To be a creative musician, there are two ways to go about it. You are either a small part of the bigger picture, or the rest of the picture will be a backdrop for you. Either the colours of my expression will paint the backdrop for the focus of the music, or I can start drawing to hard and poke holes through the paper (I hate that). Its probably clear that I’m generally the former, but only recently has it really started to dawn on me the importance of being able to bend. To phase in and out of both of these methods. Anyway, to summarize, the choice is between artistically pleasuring the masses, or musical masturbation. There is a time and a place for both, but either way ..

I am important. Bear with me now. Whether I’m a little fish in a big pond, or the other way around, either way, I’m still a fish, and being a fish in any pond means that I am a crucial part of a diverse community. If there’s one thing I learned from my high school choir days … its that every voice counts. When any individual even misses so much as a rehearsal, the group suffers, whether that person is a star soloist, or just a section filler. When I play music, I recognize my roll as important. It helps me play better, and more tuned in to the other musicians. When I take part in a community, any community, I have to recognize my roll as important. The community may have been fine before me, but now that I’m here, I am integral to its function. Being actively involved means that I am approached by yet another choice. The problem in friendships and active involvement in the lives of others is that there is a responsibility to uphold such relationships. Effort is apparently the name of the game**. The responsibility is two sided, of course. If you are to uphold this responsibility, there are two types of person that you can be … the caller, or the called. Either your relying on your relationships to sustain you, or you’re always willing to sustain others when they are relying on you. There is a time and a place for both, but either way ..

I am fallible. I wish I could tell you that every time anyone has ever needed me that I was there for them. And I wish I could tell you that every time there has been a relationship that could have used my nurture, that I was there for it. Unfortunately, neither of those things would be true. However, to fully understand the definition of being fallible, is to understand that it is a two sided word. On one hand, it means that I am not perfect. This is less a burden, and more a relief. To take my expectations of myself, and to let them go, is nothing if not emancipating. On the other hand, credited to my awareness of my own imperfection, is my hope for the future. The other side of the word is an active pursuit. To be fallible means to be imperfect, but for me it also means to wish I was better. I wish so much that I had been there for so many loved ones in my life more than I was. And so I strive to find a balance between being fully aware of my inability to be perfect, but also being in pursuit of a better standard of living. So the choice is this: Do I sit quietly in my forgiveness of myself, taking my fallibility as a sign that anything better than flawed is unattainable, or do I take my fallibility as a challenge and constantly, consciously wrestle with it head-on? Sometimes I need forgiveness, sometimes I need change. There is a time and a place for both, but either way ..

I am loved for who I am. It turns out I am more than the sum of my parts, because the sums of my parts honestly don’t add up to much. And that is the one thing I choose to be defined by.

** I have always had a problem with this, in that it is my personal belief that relationships are built on more than just contact between people. That friendships don’t die simply from a lack of contact between people. Friends I have met and experience my life with will always have a special place in my heart, and in my home. Constant contact does not make that better, and lack of it does not make it worse. Or it shouldn’t anyway. But that’s just me.


1 Comment

  1. QS said,

    You’re certainly in love with yourself, that’s for sure. Once again, self-righteous douchebag.

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