Getting Through a Hard Week

It’s midterm time at FSU and our annual “Hurricane Fall Break” didn’t come this year. You can see the sleep deprivation written across everyone’s faces. You ask a polite, “How are you?” and instead of “Good, and you?”, your friends open up about all the obligations that are weighing on their minds. It’s that point in the semester when we’re all thinking “How can I make it past this week? If I can just get past this week…” Does this sound familiar?

I always ask my students how they are dealing with the pressure and stress of the semester. “Are you treating yourself well?” What does that look like? For some it might be making the time to go to the gym or cook a meal. For others, maybe it’s taking a nap or watching your favorite show. For me, it’s putting down the to-do list, despite knowing that those boxes won’t check themselves, and taking the time to kick around a toy with my dog, or give a really good ear rub. It’s sometimes hard to know that giving yourself a break is actually more important than getting done the thing that seems so urgent. But maybe we have to think about our obligations differently?

Black Dog Duo is gearing up to record some excerpts of pieces this week and we find ourselves tired and overwhelmed by work, rehearsals, concerts and various other responsibilities. But today in rehearsal, I realized that this is the best part. After all the program planning, practicing and scheduling, we finally come together to make music. We may be cranky from exhaustion and we may have to run to another obligation afterward, but for that one hour we get to make music together and we (almost) always feel inspired after that.

So maybe the next time you’re in a rehearsal after a 12-hour day, you can stop to realize that that is the best part…

I’m sorry if you came to this blogpost looking for the magical way of getting through a difficult week, because you surely won’t get that here. But, here are a couple cute dog pictures to ease the pain: