Saturday, November 17, 2012
Jackie's Piano Recital
I'm so proud of Jackie. She has accomplished so much more than I ever dreamed. Some things will never be easy for Jackie, such as playing the piano, because her left hand is still quite weak and she doesn't have much control with it. Jackie will never be a world class pianist based on world standards but... she is a world class daughter to me.
A couple of years ago, I enrolled Jackie in piano lessons and I really liked her instructor. Her instructor was very familiar with Jackie's "disability" and worked with her well. However, as much as Jackie insisted that she wanted to take lessons, it was a struggle to get her to practice. I finally discontinued the lessons because I didn't want to continue to waste my time and money. This past summer, I found a studio closer to our house and after talking to the owner about Jackie's needs, I decided to enroll her in lessons again. This time, Jackie has been more serious about practicing and learning the theory. She was even able to memorize her recital piece within a week. Yesterday, while listening to Jackie play her piece at recital practice, I was nearly moved to tears. And this was just practice. I was just so proud of her. If you really take notice in the practice video, you can see how Jackie has to work hard to get her left hand to work to play the proper notes. She did fantastic. She is my inspiration. (click on the image below to play)
Tonight was the real deal, the actual recital. I have to admit that I was a bit worried that Jackie would freak out and back out of doing her piece on stage. She does not like to have all attention on her. However, Jackie once again fought back her fear and went up there and performed her piece. I could tell that she was nervous but she played through it despite her mistakes. I was so afraid that she would break down and start crying after her first mistake but she soldiered on. I'm so proud of Jackie. I was beaming. I really wish that I would have gotten closer to get better video. I don't know what the twirl at after her curtsy was about. She just copied the other girls who did it. It was still cute, though. (click on the image below to play)
I really enjoyed listening during the recital tonight. I enjoy listening to all the different levels and the variety of music choices. I must admit, though, there were moments that my heart grieved for my daughter. At times, I felt jealous for her. There was such extraordinary (and very young!) talent. I'm talking about 11-year olds who played way better than some adult pianists I've ever heard. I want that for Jackie. Before Jackie's diagnosis, I had dreams of her being able to play the piano, doing gymnastics, performing ballet. The day that we received Jackie's diagnosis of cerebral palsy, I really thought all my dreams for her were gone. That hasn't been the case, thankfully, but they have had to be adjusted some. Jackie is not afraid to try things and for that I am so grateful. She may never be a world class gymnast or dancer, or a world class pianist. She will never get to the level that some of those kids tonight were playing. The reality is that she will always struggle in these areas. I won't let her give up, though. She will just have to work harder. Working harder makes one stronger, right?
Hmm, a computer is on her Christmas list? I'm pretty sure that won't happen this year thanks to too many recent medical bills. Haha, she's been to Splash City just once and she's built just one bear. She was definitely a brave little girl for her 2nd (and very painful) foot surgery. It hurt my heart to see her in so much pain but being the fighter that she is, she didn't let that keep her from getting around, even with a 6-week long, full-leg 90 degree angle cast. Just another reason my heart swells with pride for my little girl.
Isn't she beautiful? That's my daughter. I'm so thankful for her. She's such a gift, a perfect gift.