What I'm Grateful For

Since it’s that time of year, let me tell you what I’m grateful for:

Bad chop days.

The kind of days when I sound like a beginner, when I’m embarrassed to be heard by the guy walking his dog past my house or the student in the next practice room. Those days when I think, “I can' t believe I have a Master’s degree in trumpet and I sound like this” - that’s what I’m grateful for.

Six months ago, I didn’t have any bad chop days. I didn’t have any good chop days either. I had all but given up on the trumpet and had convinced myself I’d never play again. Now I’m playing 90 minutes to two hours a day, and I sound pretty good most of the time. When I don’t sound good, though, I remind myself how lucky I am to have that problem in the first place.

Happy (day after) Thanksgiving!