At the beginning of this year I wrote down a list of goals for 2012. Nineteen days later, I finally started one of them. My fingertips in my left hand are a bit sore as I type and I’ve been transported to many times and places as I strummed my beautiful guitar once again. I’ve had lots of excuses why I didn’t pick it up and play. One by one I’ve shot them down, the last excuse being the fact that it only had five very old strings on it. I was a bit rusty at changing them, but now they are shiny and smooth once again and it felt heavenly to strum after so long.
My guitar was a gift almost twelve years ago. For my first guitar, I saved my pennies and bought the cheapest one in the showroom. It served me well, and I learned so much from many people as I took it with me wherever I went. Fast-forward a couple years to the night before I was leaving to go to Kenya for five months. Since I was planning on taking my guitar with me to Kenya and only had a soft-shell case I was really hoping to go out and buy a hard-shell case the next day. That night my church family gave me a farewell dinner and presented me with a hard-shell guitar case. I was so amazed, but nothing prepared me for what came next. When they told me to open the case to see if my guitar fit, there lay a beautiful, new guitar. It was a weighted moment, sort of like when I looked at my babies for the first time, and I’ll never forget it. Something so gorgeous and unexpected gifted to me. I’m still humbled.
I remember playing that night in my bedroom with my sister, Sherry and best friend Rebecca (who is now my sister-in-law). We laughed and sang and Rebecca stuffed secret crumpled up notes into my duffle bag that I found a few days later when I arrived on the other side of the ocean. I stuck my first bumper sticker on the case that said, “Life is short. Pray hard.” It started many conversations from Pennsylvania to Kenya. I was able to keep the guitar by my side the entire way there as a carry-on bag.
I love music. I’m tired of thinking I’ll be good at the guitar one day. I have a lot of ground to make up from disuse. Then I have a lot of ground to cover that I’ve never crossed before, and I’m excited about it! Hopefully in a month the pain on my fingertips will be replaced by numbness. Ten minutes a day. Anyone want to come jam with me?