Hello! My name is Mrs. Gray, and this is my confession of a music mom. The other day I found myself watching old videos of some of our daughter's very first recitals. With almost one year of music lessons, her first performance was when she was 5 years old. It was so cute watching her play her song, but come to think about it -- it was a very short song, maybe 45 seconds. Even with her fumbling fingers and funny facials, it was the best 45 seconds.
I don’t know what it is, but when it comes to recitals, I am that nervous mom with sweaty palms. Even to this day when my daughter has a performance, I get a little antsy. Having grown up in GMG, Kierra has performed numerous times, so you would think I'd have this under wraps by now.
One performance in particular that I watched was when she was about 7 years old playing Für Elise. I was a train wreck, but we practiced as much as we could, and then it was showtime! I remember my heart beating rapidly. I couldn’t take my eyes off of her. She made it through the majority of the song, and then right at the end she messed up...really bad. She had a blank look in her eyes and that's when I knew she lost her place. All I wanted to do was go up there and rescue my baby, but I couldn’t do that. I had to let her learn and grow through this experience. At the end of her performance, she stared at her music for about 7 seconds while everyone applauded. I imagine that she was having a conversation with herself about the mistake she made near the end. When she came back to reality, she saw me in the crowd of people and we locked eyes. Although she messed up, I was so proud of her and gave her my "I love you no matter what!" smile. She walked in front of the piano, took her bow, and came running into my arms.
One of the best things that we can teach our children, on and off the stage, is that no matter the success or failure, our love for them will remain the same. This provides an atmosphere that allows them to flourish, but also be content if they don’t reach every goal as planned. Kierra has made plenty of mistakes on stage since then, but all of them have taught her valuable life lessons. I encourage you to be sure to affirm your child. Let them know that your love for them is not dependent upon success or failure. This affirmation will give them what they need to accept new challenges and even make mistakes. Regardless of the outcome, they will always be certain of one thing, that they can come running into your arms!