I can remember her very first ~ ever viola lesson. She was five. She wore a yellow Gymboree dress with flowers on it. She had the cutest short bob back then and I put up the front every day.
We weren't quite sure what we were getting into with the Suzuki program. Scott and I went to a few parent meetings and thought we'd give it a try for a year.
That was nine years ago.
Nine years ago Abigail was in diapers, crawling, into everything and often on my hip.
Nine years ago we started a journey into music. One that I knew nothing about. I took piano lessons for a very brief time when I was a child but certainly knew nothing about string instruments.
But this program, Suzuki was supposed to be the best and the one that "nurtured the heart" not just taught the instrument.
I'm so glad that nine years ago happened to us.
Because Anna and her viola are one. They are beautiful together.
Part of the Suzuki program is based on a triangle of learning. The teacher, the child, and the parent. Is it not up to the teacher to teach and the child to practice (and the parent to nag).
It is mandatory that the parent goes to each and every lesson, takes notes, and is an active participant/observer. Then with practice at home the parent is THERE. Sitting with at same notebook and working WITH their child through the entire practice. This has been going on for nine years.
I can remember half way through the second year it got hard. Really hard. And I talked to Scott about the possibility of leaving the program/the viola. As we were talking it dawned on us that I'd miss all that ONE on ONE time with Anna. Just Anna. Not folding laundry. Not cooking dinner. Not on my phone (not that I had a smart phone back then). So nine years later I count all of that sweet (and sometimes not so sweet) time as a blessing. A blessing of TIME with my daughter. And I am grateful.
Today (at 4:52) Anna had an audition for her high school select orchestra. We walked in together. Scott came to the parking lot to see her off (and to scoop up Abigail so that I could focus all of my attention on Anna)
For some reason this audition (after so so so many auditions) felt like a turning point for us. Her the violist, me the parent. Like I had brought her from a kindergartner to this moment.
And I was proud. Oh so proud of this girl. As I've said before for the beautiful music she plays and the beautiful music in her heart.
I sat in the hallway and watched her walk in to play, hands trembling. She played seitz concerto no. 5 1st movement, and it sounded oh so perfect to me. Like heaven. I closed my eyes and thanked God for the girl that she is and that I get to call her my daughter.
(she also has to play a piece that she has never seen before... sight read... which she informed me she "did horrible at")
(first ever picture in her high school... graduating class of 2021)
(ps... in case you want to know about this orchestra we are not expecting her to 'get in' until perhaps her senior year... it is a internationally known high school orchestra that is simply amazing... but Anna wanted to audition for the experience and to get her foot in the door... or perhaps I should say her bow in the door)