Sunday, August 26, 2012

Just because you've been doing something forever . .

does that mean you need to/have to/should continue forever more?

I've asked myself this question several times over the last two or three decades.  I've always struggled with the answer and have made some difficult decisions that disappointed a few people.  But in the end, I had to follow my "voice."

When Michael was a little boy we had a Santa Party every year for the neighborhood kids and children of friends.  It was a blast and the kids had a great time.  Santa would arrive ringing his bells and handing out gifts and everyone loved it.  But there came a time when it felt like the "last." 

Hillary Richmond was so disappointed she wrote a paper about it in school.  Tom Collins (an adult) walked around with a frown on his face for days.  It was time, though.

I used to dress like a witch and sit on the front porch for Halloween for years scaring the crap out of the kids.  Nobody had more fun than me.  I was known far and wide.  Sometimes there would be a line down the steps. I don't remember how many years of scaring went on but, again, the pointy hat and the ugly witch mask were put away. 

I sang in a local fund raising show called Cabaret with the trio for years and years and years.  I loved every single second of performing in that production but when rehearsal started in 2007 I got that feeling again.  It was time.

And speaking of singing, I have decided to bring my time with the trio to a close.  Oh the memories I have  of Mary Spreitzer and Alva Morgan and then Sue Buese.  The laughs, the guidance, the harmony.  Phil Siegler on the piano in the early years still leaves a warm fuzzy in my heart.  Shhh, don't tell him, he gets all puffed up when you compliment him.

I've had a tough time with this decision because it affects my friends as well.  It wasn't a decision I made lightly.  It's been on my mind for over a year. 

At age 63 I'm looking at how many years of "singing" time I have left.  How much time I want to put into it and what I want to sing.  I finally came to the conclusion that I want to sing a few times a year but only a few songs every now and then and only the Blues with little rehearsal.  I have a few friends that put up with me and give me a little mic time periodically.  For right now - I think - that is enough.


  1. I still miss the Santa Party...

    1. Oh, nice Gerb - way to make me feel guilty. Hey, start one of your own!

  2. Well, thanks for many years of entertainment, even so. Takes some courage, I know, to give it up.

  3. I bet you will find something new and exciting to do, it keeps life interesting :)

    1. Very true, Astrid. Hey, BTW, happy b-day just a bit late.

  4. As you well know I too have made decisions like this. They never come easy. There's always a little guilt or feeling you're going to let someone down. There's great self satisfaction in doing something you enjoy and having the bonus of that same thing providing enjoyment to others.

    For me the decision narrowed to just a couple of factors. Like you, I always put pressure on myself to do it right and do it well. It was becoming more difficult to achieve my expectation and I wanted to stop while it was still good. The other factor for me was that I'm just weary of responsibility.

    It wasn't as difficult once I'd quit as I thought it might be. Actually, I didn't even touch my piano for about three months after my last Sunday playing at church, must have been time. I have gone back to my piano, but now in a different way, trying to learn to do more without the music and learn more about theory.

    Music is a large part of you. "Retiring" from the singing as a commitment certainly doesn't mean it won't still be a large part of you. There's something special about being able to enjoy music with the deeper understanding from being a part of performing it.


    1. Phil - you were on my mind the whole time I was writing this particular entry. I knew you shared my sentiment.
      Thanks for being there, pal.

  5. I'm so happy I've had the opportunity to hear you sing with the trio!!! It has truly been a treat and a delight.

    And I really love that you 'listen' to what your inner voice is telling you to do or when it's time to do it...or end it!!! :)