Growing up I wanted to do so many things. Beat my brother in a foot race, find the biggest ant hill, and catch the most tadpoles. It didn’t take long before I figured out what I really wanted to do: play the piano. Watching my mom play was like watching a football quarterback throw the perfect pass. There seemed to be no flaw as her hands flowed over the many keys to make the sounds of a perfect melody. It seemed like the piano obeyed her every command. As I watched with eagerness I asked if she could teach me how to play. She told me that learning the piano is no small task. It takes vast amounts of practice and determination. As I stood there reflecting back on how she had played I promised I would not let her down and that I would do what I was asked. Determination was boiling inside to master the piano.
The first day of lessons came and I was ready. With the piano books in my bag I marched up the steps to my Piano teacher, Patti’s, house. Before too long I was playing “Yankee Doodle”. During lessons one day, Patti asked me to play a song. She handed me a book and told me the page number. When I opened the book and looked at what she wanted me to play, my jaw fell to the ground. There was no way I could play that. I asked her why she wanted me to play that one instead of one I already knew. Patti told me that the song was to see how well I was learning. I tried to play the music, but to no prevail. She told me it would take time and to practice at home.
As I sat at my mom’s piano I stared at the music like it was a nightmare. With all the measures and notes I didn’t know where to begin. I slowly plunked out each note and tried to make it sound pretty. I screamed at the music and then stomped away and sat on the couch. As I sat there I thought about what Patti told me. This song was to see how well I was learning. I jumped off of the couch, ran to the piano and started to plunk the keys again.
Again and again I played the song. Just when I thought I couldn’t take any more I froze. I looked at my hands and then at the music, not sure of what I heard. I started again then leapt for joy. I did it! I did it! I mastered the piano! When lessons came I excitedly sat down at the piano and played Patti my masterpiece. Now when I come to a bump in the road I remember that simple song. I try my hardest to climb over the bump because the success from having determination is far more enjoyable than not knowing what could have happened.
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