Posted by Theo on May 09, 1999 at 23:16:20:
Thanks everyone, for all those messages and emails..
I don't know what's happening to me... Is this just a phase? Well, could be, maybe not.
Let me tell you this story again.. I started the cello at the age of 10, mainly because my mom forced me to. I had some fun with it for the first few weeks, but after that I lost my interest, and eventually grew to hate it. I had several terrible teachers, who all did a real bad job on me, making me hate the cello even more. The first 4 years were a completely waste of time.. I practiced less than an hour a week and never took it seriously... But last year it all changed... I immigrated to Canada and started playing in my highschool orchestra where the standards were very low.. I mean everyone in the orchestra was worse than me, and I was considered to be really good. That somehow changed my attitude.. completely.. Then I met this wonderful teacher who has been doing a wonderful job on me... I've been improving rapidly and have accomplished a lot, in a short period of time. Last september, when I did my first solo with my highschool orchestra, I decided to become a professional cellist. Then just a couple months ago, in February, when I played the Haydn C, again with the orchestra, I wanted to become more than just a professional cellist, a well known, famous, great cellist. Back in February, that feeling wasn't all that strong.. But it grew, and at some point it, recently, it has started to drive me crazy... I'm almost desperate.. I desperately want to become famous, great etc...
But... we all know how hard it is to become famous, even for the ones who have the skills. Musicians around me(including my mom) are telling me to forget about becoming as famous as Rostropovich. My mom tells me she honestly thinks that it is somewhat too late and besides, to become as good as Rostropovich, one needs to be extremely gifted, as well as willing to work hard. My mom knows me.. She's been with me for 15 years and knows what kind of person I am... She knows how much I want to become famous.. She also knows how sensitive I am, and how easily I can get discouraged... She's a professional pianist, who was once called a prodigy.. and she knows how hard it is to become real good and famous. She told me to forget about becoming really famous and it makes a lot of sense... plus, she knows how discouraged I'd be when I eventually find out that I'll not be able to become as good as Rostropovich, and she doesn't want her son to commit suicide.. I mean... I know very well that she's not trying to discourage me... She's just telling me the basic facts... that I probably don't have what it takes to become a great cellist...
Yes it is late... and it seems pretty obvious that I don't have that much talent... not as much as Rostropovich or Yo-Yo Ma, or Starker or Feuermann or Du Pre or Fournier... Yes, you can tell me that talent is not the important thing... but we all know that it takes a lot more than hard work to become a world-class cellist. And I doubt if I have enough of that...
On the other hand, I really really really x100000 want to become, a famous world-class cellist. You can say whatever you want to say about this... But this feeling is really strong inside me...
Playing in an decent orchestra, doing a concert or two per year, making a living with teaching... All this is not what I want to do in my life... I'd hate to do it... I just can't accept that to happen in my life.. My life wasn't meant to be that way..
Okay, I know I'm sounding conceited, self-centered and terribly bad, but all I want to say is that I'll never be happy with myself if I were to become just a normal, decent cellist.
Speaking of life, I hope you guys wouldn't mind me telling a little bit of my life... Life, for me, has been hard... At least harder than many others' lives... From the day I was born, till today, and till the day I close my eyes and hopefully go to heaven, I had to put up with all these isms, and ings, problems, including racism, stuttering and many others... I've been living in three different countries and have never been really accepted to any of them... What I'm saying here is that I always felt different... not a part of the country, community, but isolated, alone, singled out... and I'll never be able to find my home, never... Till the day I end this miserable life everyone will think of me as a foreigner, never as a part of themselves...
When I post a message, why do I never put my last name after my first name, Theo? In my emails, the name appears as "Theo -". Very few people know my last name.. it is short, and I find it ugly.. I really wish I had a long, beautiful, English last name.. like Ellis, Hartgraves or Balderston, or Price or Duncan, or whatever... you people out there all have beautiful last names.. let me make a "confession". I'm not white.. and I hope it won't change your opinions about me.
I've hat to put up with a lot of things in my life, and I guess it was more than what I could take... During my elementary school years, I was always the loner, the foreigner, the one that was different... Instead of getting a gun and shooting everyone in my school, I took everything in, and in changed myself... I became a terrible, painful stutterer, which in turn has completely changed my life... It has made me a stupid, dumb, Q#$^%#% kid who doesn't even know his name, address, phone number and etc... it has made my life a lot harder..
Does anyone have any idea how it feels like to not be able SPEAK? Getting stuck at every word, taking all that embarassment and humiliation and still trying to get that @%@#% word out of my mouth. Speaking is tiring... So easy for many people, so hard for me.
All this has been a problem, so I've started this group therapy thing, for my low self-esteem and other problems...
Honestly, I hate myself... I hate my last name, my looks, my voice, the fact that I stutter, my body and everything... My life's been like a war... a never ending war.. I've been trying to escape from my identity which is impossible.. I've been trying to not be what I'm right now... I've never been happy with my life.
Going back to the cello problem... Becoming a famous cellist and doing all that kinda stuff would be one thing that would make me happy... but i know this is hard, extremely hard and I really don't know why I should be playing the cello if all this is almost impossible..
For one thing.. I'm extremely strange... or different. I tend to take things to seriously, I was told.. Why can't I just enjoy my life and be happy..? But I guess it is really, too late now... Everything has already happened.
Am I dumb..? Even after all those messages and emails I still don't know what to do... I don't want any encouragement that will make things worse later... I mean, should I really be doing this? and why, why, why can't I be happy with becoming a normal, decent cellist?
One thing that I wish had never happened to me..
I wish I'd never been born. That way I won't have to go through all this and probably be happy dying as sperm. I know, I shouldn't be saying this right after mother's day... I know what my mom, my parents had to go through for more than 15 years but, well... For one thing, I'll never have children... As long as I live..
Anyways... Just want to thank everyone for their messages and emails.. and I've got to go and get some sleep.
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