Notes to my younger self

Dear seventeen-year-old Vanessa,

You are going to have your first recital and you are worried because the pieces are not sounding perfect. Trust me, everything is going to be fine. In fact, your 20-year-old self just been told to not to be a perfectionist who gets panic all the time. Chill.

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Rejection or redirection?

I do not always say that I hate rejection, but I do hate it, and I think most people feel the same way.

On the other day, while I was staring at my phone screen checking my Instagram, I came across a quote. “As I look back on my life, I realize that when I thought I was being rejected from something good I was actually being re-directed to do something better.” I put my phone down and tried to retrieve my memory of rejection.

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A confession

I miss teaching my students how to play ornaments, singing with them, telling them to ‘bring out the melody’, forcing them to perform in concerts, telling them to sit on the piano stool ‘like a princess’, and sharing some funny stories with them. I also miss their lame excuses such as, “I can’t practice because I forgot to”, “I don’t know which piece you want me to practice”, I had a lot of home works and tests”. I have always been a strict teacher. Not only that I have sent some of my students home when they did not practice, but I am pretty sure all of them had been yelled at some point. My favorite lines are, “I am not a babysitter. I don’t want your mom to pay me just to sit here and watch you practice, something that you can do alone at home.”

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