Thursday, May 27, 2010

"I want every girl in the world to pick up a guitar and start screaming." ~ Courtney Love

Two years ago my husband bought a guitar for me because I told him that I wanted to learn how to play one.  I still do.  I messed around with it a few times when I first got it but had trouble even getting my hand position correct on the strings.  Every time I pressed down to strum a cord it would make that horrible ping-sound, which let me know that my fingers were touching adjacent strings.  Plus, after trying for a short while, my finger tips became so tender and painful that I just gave up. 

So, there ya go, Ms. Courtney Love...this girl picked up a guitar and screamed!  (Probably not what she had in mind.)
Needless to say, for the last two years, I have looked at that guitar everyday on its stand in the corner of my room and thought, “I really want to learn how to play that thing.”  But the frustration and pain from my early experiences at tinkering with it keep me from trying again.  Instead of the quaint little hobby, I once thought it would be for me, it has become a monster challenge that intimidates me more than rationally appropriate.

I want to take lessons but our current budget doesn’t have room for the cost.  I have inspected a couple of self-lesson books and online resources that only leave me feeling more overwhelmed.  Maybe it isn’t the time to learn this skill.  Maybe enjoying the beautiful music of someone else playing the acoustic guitar is enough.  After all, buying a music CD is definitely simpler than learning to play the instrument myself!

What’s that I feel?  Oh, yes…those little pangs of jealousy.  “Other people can play the guitar, so by golly I will, too!” is what my crazy mind tells me.

I think recognizing and enjoying the talents of others without coveting their skills is a lesson that I am still learning.  I often want more than my “fair share in life.”  (I think that quote is either from the Big Book of Alcoholics Anonymous or the Twelve Steps and Twelve Traditions book but I can’t find it at the moment. Does anyone know?)

(As a side note, I just spent the better part of an hour scanning the first 164 pages of the Big Book looking for this quote.  Yes, it is a fact that I am NOT yet cured of my obsessiveness and perfectionism.  However, I was inspired to slow down and read more thoroughly when I got to the chapter, We Agnostics, where I saw so many things I needed to be reminded of today --unrelated to my guitar woes, by the way-- Thank you, God. Thank you, blog!)

For now, I will let the guitar sit and collect dust until the struggle between what I want to do and what I am able to do dissipates.  In the meantime, I will “stop fighting anyone or anything” --including that silly guitar!  I will instead bask in the “sunlight of the Spirit” as I “trudge the Road of Happy Destiny.”

(Above quotes taken from the book, Alcoholic Anonymous, 4th ed., pages 103, 66, and 164, respectively.)   Hey, I just read the whole thing…I had to throw in a couple of good quotes!


  1. I did the same thing with my wife. She eventually quit. It is a bit overwhelming but practicing helps. Maybe she will try again at some point.

  2. I can relate to this. In my case it is a matter of not using my new cell phone to its fullest potential because I procrastinate at taking the study time it requires.

    BTW - thanks for visiting my blog and commenting.


  3. My "assets" in excess become my "defects". I love how Jeremy in "Half Measures Avail Us Nothing" said he changed one thing over and over and it eventually made a huge difference. Each time I choose to do differently, think differently, act differently (from my old obsessive self) I feed my "assets" and they grow. Anyway, I feel more positive. Thanks for sharing your struggle. I like the "trudge the Road of Happy Destiny" quote!


Thank you for sharing!