performance Aug 13_edited

Courage is his middle name

August 11, 2013, 1 Comment

My son had a breakthrough with God today. In this extroverted-obsessed world, my introverted boy did something he struggled with for the past 2 years. He would never perform in front of a large audience, solo.

He loves music and plays well, but he does not care for the applause of men. He shy away from them. He would not be the first to shout out an idea, he prefers to observe. I personally do not see performance a big deal for kids under 12. It is rehearsed and staged.

For extroverts, it is a no brainer. Lapping up in the limelight would be a dream come true. For an introvert, it is a torture. 2 years ago, he would not even play for a cosy group of 6. Weeks after weeks, we coaxed, encouraged, threatened and finally relented and let him find his bearings his way.

 If he is not comfortable, we would share a passage from the Bible about courage and left it there. Over time, he realised he had to work very hard to overcome this.

Playing the piano was secondary, it was learning to be comfortable playing in the presence of others. Every weekend, he would come to class to learn to play the piano, while I learn to grow a thicker hide.  Over the months, we struggled. A reformed extroverted me started to understand more and more about how my introverted child is feeling.

One day, when he agreed to play solo in the class, we celebrated that little victory. Other times he would waver and I had to decide whether to push him out of his comfort zone, or if it was worth it to stretch him at all. Music lesson was sapping all my energy. Imagine that.

Soon, he was playing solo consistently in class. And music lesson after 2 years have finally become a thing “I” began to look forward to.

During last year’s music concert. He was excited, and so invited his uncle and grandma to come watch him. But when the time came for him to perform, he pulled a long and surly face. He was clearly not happy. I felt bad insisting he go up with the others.

We decided that this year, we shall keep things casual and simple. If modesty is his motto, then we shall follow. Other kids were dressed in semi formal wear. For him, it was the usual t-shirt, bermuda and slippers. We reckon it is good as long as he is comfortable. No fanfare, no drama. I did not even bring my camera. We learnt later it is about embracing the person that he is created to be.  

At home, I asked God what can I give him to help him? God reminded me of all the miracles that Jesus performed. So we re-visited about those stories in the week leading to the performance.

I also taught him to repeat the 3 important statements when he feels afraid. 1) God is with me. 2) I am gifted. 3) Together God and I can do it!

Today, at the piano concert, he chose 3 wonderful songs that he loved. “Morning” by Evard Grieg,A swedish folk song “The Sleeping Princess” in Alberti bass and “Ode To Joy” by Beethovan. He played confidently and the bonus was that he played so well. To me, that was just amazing. Teachers came by and congratulated him for being brave. I wanted to cry. Not because he played well, but he was brave.

Back at home, we prepared a faith gift a week ahead. We wanted to reward him for his courage. So we got him a Mcqueen stationary set and a book about animals which he loved. I also got him to thank his brother for his support at his concert. You should see the way younger brother mooted for him at the concert. and singing alongside with him while at home whenever he played the piano. It was just so heartwarming. Younger brother got a Thomas the train stationary set and a book on the fastest land animal – “Cheetah”. In our family, we really wanted everyone to be part of each other’s victory.

He told me, “when I was walking towards the piano chair, I was so nervous. But when I sat down to play, I was feeling so good, I was not scared anymore.”

Well done son! It’s “A” for bravery and for allowing God to work through.  And if you are reading this in time, I want you to remember your middle name that God gave you personally. He calls you Conrad.

And I just have one more thing to say “You know son, to me, performance is no big deal, if you choose not to perform that is okay. But courage, it is ever so needful in our lives. It is something we need for many other areas of life to take off. We need courage to do the right thing, courage to say no, courage to stand up, courage to help others, courage to comfort, courage to forgive, courage to dream, courage to believe and more. When you are all grown, you will know in time, with courage, there will be light in the darkness, peace in chaos and hope for the hopeless.”

Walk tall, together God and you will conquer.

One Response to “Courage is his middle name”

  1. Fatboy_Joe says:

    I am truly happy for your son’s display of courage. Kudos to you and your persistence in allowing God hand in forming your children.

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