The Resonance of Strings: A Late Bloomer
I took up the violin when I turned 33. To this day, I’m not sure what possessed me. One day, the idea just popped into my head—it didn’t matter how old I was, I could learn the violin if I wanted to. A week later, I owned a good quality used violin, a lovingly worn second-hand violin case, an inexpensive bow, a small cake of amber rosin and the phone number of a violin teacher who accepted adult students (apparently, there’s a special knack to teaching violin to the less pliable adult mind).
I’d wanted to play the violin since I fell in love with fiddle music in my early twenties. But I scoffed at the thought of picking it up back then, pinned down by my own limiting belief that it was an instrument one could only learn in childhood. But, for some unknown reason that day, the powerful thought, an epiphany, really—that it’s never too late to learn—struck a deep chord in me and kept resonating until I finally acted on it. I had no goal in mind other than to play the violin simply for the joy of learning and, possibly, hopefully, one day, to be able to play well enough to strike up a few fiddle tunes as my partner strummed his guitar. I reasoned that if I only practiced fifteen minutes every day, in time I’d be somewhere—I didn’t know where exactly, but no matter how bad I was, in five or ten years I’d be someplace farther up the road. Since I was starting from point zero, there was no way I couldn’t improve.