Wow, I overcame a huge emotional, self-esteem-ish hurdle this weekend: singing and playing guitar in front of others. I can’t really explain this leap away from shyness. Fear of putting myself out there in this intimate performing way has always terrified me. But this weekend my soul sister, Colleen, visited. She’s “shy” too…ahem!
The hurdle jumping happened rather organically. We were hanging out in the living room talking, talking, talking and watching guitar performing heroes of mine on YouTube. People like Mary Chapin Carpenter, Cheryl Wheeler, and Mark Knopfler;songwriters who also play a mean guitar and tell stories through their craft. That’s always been my dream, my real dream-to craft stories with words and a guitar and play them for people. I tried it in high school, but locked myself away in my room instead and entertained myself trying to play and sing along to Jackson Browne, Dan Fogelberg, and Gordon Lightfoot.
Anyway, yesterday I found myself heading into our guest room and coming out again with my guitar and a stack of songs that I can muddle my way through. And we began to sing together. Shyly at first, and then in big voices trying to hit notes like the pros. It was stunning. It felt freeing. I felt exuberant. I wanted it to go on all day. I was playing better than I know how to. Colleen was singing like it’s something she does on the side and makes money doing. It filled us up like nothing else we’ve done in the eleven years of our friendship.
Why does it take so long and require so much effort to be who you really are? I don’t know the answer to that. We muddle along the best we can and every now and then the stars all align to give you a glimpse of your own greatness. It was a miracle, I’d say. And I’m very, very grateful to have been insane enough to step into the offering.
Just wanted to share. I haven’t posted in a while and I have missed it.
Have you surprised yourself with greatness lately?