If you read the sidebar, “About Me”, you know that one of my dreams in life has been to play the drums. When I was a child, there was never money for that sort of dream and, I admit, I never again voiced my dream until a few years ago. Once I mentioned the idea, my husband, being the wonderful person he is, gave me a drum set for Christmas. It’s a really pretty set – red, of course. It’s set up in an alcove of our upstairs hallway. My plan for each of the last several years has been to learn to play those drums – that hasn’t happened. Then, last year I read in O, The Oprah Magazine about a Ladies’ Rock Camp. This camp, offered two or three times a year, is a fundraiser for the Girls’ Rock Camps that are offered in the summer. And the best part is that the camp is located right here in Portland, Oregon. They claim that no experience is necessary, so, naturally, I signed up.
I initially found out about the class and began the enrollment process over a year ago. I had hoped that before attending I would actually gain some experience on the drums either through lessons or self-teaching videos. While I’m happy with my progress toward my goal of writing regularly this year, I have not done anything toward my goal of learning to play the drums. Now, the camp is two weeks away and I’m beginning to feel a bit nervous. Last week I confided to a friend that I’m really not very good at taking risks of this sort. I do a lot of things well, so I tend to stick with the areas in which I know I can excel. Now I’m set to go to a three-day camp with women from all over the country; many of whom are accomplished and/or professional musicians. On the first day of camp we have to connect with others and form a band and then on the last day of the camp we have to give an actual, public performance! What was I thinking?
I initially felt this same kind of nervousness about participating in walking and running events. I’ve overcome that fear by reminding myself of the exuberance I feel at the end of a race, regardless of how far back in the pack I finish. I have given serious consideration to canceling my participation in this camp, but I keep reminding myself that it’s just like walking or running an event. I’m not there to impress anyone else; I’m there to fulfill a dream of my own. I’d like to be able to say, “So what if I bomb on stage?” but, the reality is, I don’t want to bomb. I want to do well. Right now, however, the challenge isn’t getting up on stage; the challenge is getting myself to go to camp that first day. Stay tuned.