Friday, 20 July 2018

Live your best life they say.....What is that exactly?

So, I have heard this phrase a lot over the past few months and, although I know what the words mean, I don’t really know what they mean for me. I just know that this can not be my best life. Please don’t roll your eyes and think this is going to be, yet another, woe is me post. It’s not!

I teach, A LOT and we have, finally, reached the end of the school year. Apart from the fear that I am going to be skint for the next couple of months, this pleases me immeasurably. I have spread myself very thin. I am physically and emotionally spent. I know this because I have just watched Mamma Mia (the original film not the new one) and cried 3 times (and not because of Pierce Brosnan’s singing, I really don’t mind his singing actually). I know something has to change but I don’t know what and I don’t know how to change it. I feel like I have been on a rollercoaster that I can’t get off. It just keeps going round and round, making my head spin to the point that I can’t think straight (ooh sorry about that over-the-top nonsense).

So you can only imagine how thrilled I am that the rollercoaster has come to a standstill for the next week. Well I say a standstill, I still have to prepare for the one summer school I have managed to bag, but at least I can do that from the comfort of my sofa. I then have my very first concert with my choir, The Songsations, on August 11th.


Might as well get a cheeky plug in. The choir is, kind of, keeping me sane at the moment. I’m not sure whether I will feel the same at 7pm on the 11th August but Tuesday evening (when we rehearse) is, by far, my favourite evening in any week at the moment. With that in mind I thought I should start another branch of The Songsations on another evening but the only evening I could run it at a decent time would be Fridays but do people want to join a choir on a Friday night? I tried doing a poll but it was fairly inconclusive. The  thing is, I absolutely know what I don’t want to do anymore but getting out of it is impossible right now as it would leave me without the money to pay my rent. Not ideal, especially for my landlord. So I find myself in a vicious circle.

Having talked to many other teachers who still have one foot dangling in the performing side of things I realise that I am not the only one who feels like they have got themselves stuck in a rut they can’t seem to wriggle out of. My particular problem is that I hate letting anyone down. I have worked for one particular dance school for 4 years exactly now. I teach on Wednesday evenings and all day Saturdays for them (I teach singing NOT dance!!!) and in the 4 years I have been there I have not had a single day off! I finished 45mins early one Saturday during my first year there to go and do a gig but that did not affect anything, no cover was needed, we just combined a couple of classes. I am proud of the fact I haven’t had a day off but, at the same time, wonder what opportunities I have let pass me by because of my need to please other people.

I have decided that I am going to do some hard thinking over the summer and come up with a plan! If the choir has taught me anything it is that, although I enjoy teaching kids, I prefer working with adults so more choirs are definitely on the horizon (perhaps I’ll put the Sunday choir plans back into the melting pot). I need a 2 year plan. It was going to be a 5 year plan but, at my age, I have to get a move on. 

So, I am hoping the summer is going to bring the breathing space and thinking time I need to work out what it is I need and want to do going forward. I do know sitting on my sofa watching Mamma Mia is not going to solve this conundrum and I need to get out and start chasing what I actually want and as Wimbledon has now finished I have no excuse not to get on with it!