I have a crazy follow up to my last post. My thankless job as the mean mom received an unexpected moment of appreciation. One of my nieces asked my daughter to play the piano for her at a string festival over the weekend. We were given the accompaniment music months ago. It was more than enough time but I made sure my daughter practice those songs every day.
We arrived a day early for the competition to make sure both my daughter on the piano and my niece on the cello would have no issues playing their parts together. The first song they practiced sounded so off it hurt my ears. I asked them to do it again but got the same result. I took both of their sheet music and compared them side by side. The song was the same except the key signatures didn’t match. My daughter had been given the accompaniment for a different instrument than the cello. My panic level inched up but the situation was still fixable. My daughter at least had a comfortable understanding of how the song should sound once we found the music in the right key.
Then I decided it might be wise to look at the second song they were supposed to perform. The titles written at the top of the music said both sheets of music were the same song, but my heart dropped at the sight of the different metered times. They couldn’t be the same song. My daughter had learned a completely different song than the one she needed to perform.
After about an hour of scrambling we finally had the right music for both songs. I feared the task ahead for my daughter. She had never performed with so little time to practice, and she had to perform these in front of judges. I’ve never seen my daughter focus harder and complain less about practicing the piano. She became the self-motivated child I’d been trying for years to get.
Before she went to bed that night she hugged me. “Thank you, mom. Because you always make me practice, I was able to learn that music so fast.”
Nothing could have made me happier—except maybe a voice recorder to document the moment.