• JoAnn Lamolino

1 Year

This week marks one year that our lives changed forever. I'm sure we've all seen it around social media within the last week or so, " This week last year was our last normal week and we had no idea."

I'm sure we all remember where we were last year when we played our last concert, rehearsal, lunch on the gig or drinks after the show. I guess it's like when our parents or grandparents remember where they were when JFK got shot.

This brings up so much for everyone especially musicians. Most of us are still not working full time. Many may have found another job, another career, a side hustle. Many are homeschooling their children or have become stay at home parents. Many wonder if they will have a career to go back to. The landscape of the world we were used to is completely different and will be once society gets back to "normal", whatever that means. When life gets back to "normal" Musicians don't really know what that is going to look like. The performing arts have taken quite a financial hit. Many organizations and venues have closed permanently. We all wonder, what will be left? On the one hand, this whole year has been extremely scary, uncertain, frustrating and depressing. These feelings continues for many. On the other, many have found other focuses and interests to keep motivated and inspired in what has been one of the worst years on paper.

My last six days before our world stopped, I was in Tucson, AZ. I hung our with friends, played Shostakovich 12 with a great orchestra, drank many coffees at Presta, one of my favorite coffee shops in the country, visited an Ansel Adams exhibit, and kept close contact with what was going on in Hawaii. I am on the Orchestra Committee and we were very chatty deciding what was safe or not moving forward. The whole mood of the week was very tense and uncertain. On my way to the dress rehearsal, we got cancelled in Tucson, Hawaii got cancelled the next day. I changed my flight from Honolulu to Newark. Took one last awesome hike in the dry desert air with friends and flew home on a red eye unmasked (cause we didn't have them a year ago). It was all very uncomfortable.

Now a year later, the year that was completely unpredictable gave me the gift of time. There have been many things I have been able to do because I had the time. For the first time in 8 or 9 years I actually lived with my husband all year. That's been great. We celebrated our anniversary in June by having a picnic on Franklin Roosevelt's patio. Something that couldn't have happened if the National Parks Service had the house open. We all found out that us Gen. X'ers are perfectly suited to pandemic life. Apparently we trained for it as kids. Frequently bored and having to entertain ourselves.

I bought a lot of mouthpieces. I found more efficient ways to play the trumpet. Found better ways to practice with Ryan Beach. Took trumpet lessons with someone I've had a trumpet/human being crush on for a while. Have really enjoyed teaching and watching my students progress. Have watched and listened to so many of my friends online. So inspiring to see what everyone is up to. Baked a lot, took road trips to local places I've never been to before, went hiking a lot with old friends. Have actually binged watched a series...We are on Crazy X -Girlfriend (brilliant and awful!).

Oh, and we finally had time to sell our house.....

One big highlight is finally having the time to get my Kundalini Yoga teacher certification. I've been practicing for 13 years and it has always brought much grounding and centering to my life. This year it has really helped to make me as comfortable as I can be. And I am so happy to be Abel to share it through teaching. So far I have a class on Mondays on ZOOM!

Today I found a sand dollar on the beach. I've never seen one in real life before. After looking it up, I read that it is good luck to find one. It symbolizes hope and peace. May we all eventually have that this year. That made my week, in what has really stirred up a lot for all of us.

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