Rather than being a season of joy and light, the holiday season tends to be a time of freneticism and stress for we musicians. I had a conducting gig earlier this week in the pouring rain, and though we were under and awning the ground was soaked, leaving me no place to put my bag down. I ended up conducting half the concert with my heavy purse over my shoulder, finally spying a fencepost over which I could place the straps of my bag. Since then my right shoulder has been all sorts of fouled up. I’m thinking of treating myself to a massage when all this is over.
Speaking of massage, I bought a lot of groceries yesterday. (What?) I planned out menus for the weekend and got lots of delicious ingredients, as well as fixins for fudge for our potluck at work tomorrow. What does this have to do with massage? It feels like an indulgence to buy all the food I need for my recipes. For whatever reason, I carry around the mindset that I should only have what I need to get by, and nothing more, which is why I don’t get massages and I didn’t start getting manicures until my mid-twenties, and even then only very rarely, and only with wracking guilt. A massage – even a cheap one from a salon chain – seems like an indulgence of the highest order, even above the leeks I bought yesterday. I keep reminding myself that my body suffers when I don’t take care of it, and that there’s a difference between self-care and indulgence.
But who knows, maybe I’m right, and paying someone to fix my shoulder is sinful after all.
This weekend is Gaudete Sunday, which means PINK VESTMENTS!!! (excuse me boys, I meant to say rose). I have a few amazingly loud pink wardrobe items which I reserve for Gaudete and Laetare, the two pink Sundays. I haven’t been as good as I usually am about rotating through my purple clothes for Advent this year, but I have been enjoying the beautiful colors around at mass.
With all the craziness around here, I haven’t been to the gym or to yoga in weeks. Weeks I say! Aside from waving my arms around conducting, working my abs singing staccato, and a few push-ups when I start to feel really guilty, I’m not getting much activity. I promise I’ll be better in a week or so. I promise. Watch, now we’ll have a mongo snowstorm next week and I won’t be able to run outside until April.
Annie closed last weekend after packed houses during our six-performance run. They say to never share the stage with a kid or an animal, and while I can see the wisdom in that, I’m still glad I took a chance.
As I write, I’m listening to “But who may abide…for He is like a refiner’s fire” from The Messiah, one of the many pieces that makes me wish I were a mezzo (I know that there exists a soprano transposition for when the soprano soloist is the main draw, but I have yet to be anyone’s Messiah-nic main draw yet). I could take or leave the ‘but who may abide’ section, but the ‘refiner’s fire’ business really gets cooking. Other mezzo arias I covet are the Seguidilla (Carmen), Must the Winter Come So Soon (Vanessa), and Et Exultavit (Magnificat).
I tend to listen to The Messiah more during Advent and Christmas even though I know it’s not a Christmas piece (purists, please don’t leave me angry comments about this). What’s on your Advent/Christmas playlist?
Have a warm, restful, wonderful weekend!
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