In my long explanation of why I run, I talk a bit about how the really valuable things in life take time. My younger son reminded me of this in a couple of ways this evening. He’s 7 years old.
About a year ago, he started asking us to let him take guitar lessons, so this year we thought he might be ready. He started about a month ago on lessons and he immediately hated it. I’m pretty sure he expected to come out of his first lesson nailing the intro to Where the Streets Have No Name with the ease of The Edge. Ummm, yeah. Didn’t quite happen that way. He spent the first three weeks complaining that it was too hard, his fingers hurt and he didn’t like it. I, being the SuperDad that I am, responded with, “Tough shit. You started this, you’re going to finish it.” I’m nothing if not subtle.
My wife, on the other hand, realized he needed encouragement, and proceeded to sit down with him to help him practice. He got the attention he wanted, and, amazingly enough, he started to improve.
So last night he came up to me and said, “Dad, can I show you the song that I learned?” And he proceeded to play through a simple four note song, with nice, even tempo, and never once had to look at his own hands to know they were on the right fret. The performance was one thing, but the pride that he now had that he can do it was amazing! Now he’s beginning to show excitement about continuing to play, rather than dread.
I know this post has nothing to do with running. But being reminded that we both had to show some patience in order to see results was great. He needed to take some time to start being able to play without frustration, and I needed to give him the time to work through it in his own way.