Hey Presto! Mio manifesto!
Or something else, equally enthusiastic. I just checked my blog counter. And it says the blog site has been visited 64 times!!
Maybe that´s not a lot at all in the world of blogs, but.
In my innocent state of blog ignorance, it sounds tremendous.
Just yesterday I was struggling with thoughts like; why blog, or write at all, there are so many people doing it, high quality, and I know nothing about blogging or how to make it be read out there in the wild wild web, the dream stream where so many great ideas and projects sink to the bottom without anyone ever having noticed at all, that it was out there floating about…
This counter number really encourages me. I will keep going. And when my tiny tot son soon starts kindergarten (7.of Oct.), I will get time and energy to research how professional blogging is done. Not that the info will mean there is commercial hope for a blog like this one. But just to know. And even if it isn´t possible to make money out of this typing, I will keep blogging. Just like I have kept a journal for as long as I can remember. From before I started school. Writing is simply necessary for my wellbeing. And to have someone actually read what one writes, is … a gift I truely appreciate, money or no money. It carries its own reward. Both the writing. And the being read.
Anyways. The heading today; A blogger and her blog, is an intertextual referance to my first piano notes booklet.
It was called A girl and her piano.
I guess it symbolizes to me, being at the starting point of learning a new skill. Like blogging. Or piano playing.
I played the piano age 10-16. Learning from an elderly lady, a very elegant one. And nice. Never telling me off for not having practiced enough at home. (Again). Always just playing the piece for me, then supporting me through learning it note by note. A great pleasure to master a new piece. The music from my key-pressing, became more and more nice to listen to! I mean, from the first very simple songs, twinkle twinkle little star… to more complex classical pieces, like “March from Carmen” …
Age 16 I quit. Two reasons. Or maybe three. First, we moved from Haugesund to Karmøy. Half an hour by bus. So it made my piano lessons and football practice more difficult to keep up. I continued football for a short while, and quit piano. Also because I was more interested in sitting at home listening to pop and rock music, making collages of pop idols, gluing pictures from magazines, and drawing words at great detail, writing poems about being in love, and about the fear of atomic war, and such. This was 1988.
But the third reason I quit piano lessons, is the more interesting one. It was because, every xmas my teacher arranged a concert by all her students, for our families. That last xmas, I was her oldest student, hence her show piece, the one she was the most proud of. Which is a compliment. But. It made me feel very pressurized. That my performance somehow was connected to my teacher´s honour. And my parents´ pride in me.
I remember the numbing nervousness prior to walking on stage. The fear of forgetting notes, or just freezing half way through.
My performance went well. Everyone was smiling, clapping.
I went down from the stage and back to my parents´and little sister´s table. I took the bottle of coke to pour myself a glass. The glass bottle hit the edge of my glass like a drumstick! How extremely humiliating to my teenager heart. My father leaned across the table and put a finger on the bottleneck, stopping the sound. He looked me in the eyes, with a gentle laughter. A precious moment, but at the same time I felt ashamed, that everyone now had heard as well as now could see from his holding the bottle, how nervous I had been.
My teacher was sad that I quit. Told my parents I could reach far if I wanted to. I don´t know how conscious I was about my reasons for quitting. I probably just felt like it. Maybe these reasons were not even correct. Just a product of my hindsight theorizing.
But it doesn´t really matter. They are the reasons as I see it today. Correct or not correct, they still hold value as my present truth.
More than twenty years later, in 2010, I decided to find out what my stagefright was caused by, and to try and get over it. As I was in a project which would have me hold an opening speech at an exhibition of my poetry and video installation, linked with paintings by Fanø´s fine artist Margit Enggaard. Easter 2011. At Fanø Kunstmuseum.
My husband works at a university college, and there they have this lady employed, who helps the students get rid of their exam anxiety. Which is very related to stagefright.
The fear of not performing good enough.
So we contacted her, and she came over to ours 3 times in all, doing her magic using TFT, thought field therapy. Whilst tapping gently on points on my fingers, hands, head and face, she asked me questions about how it felt when I thought about holding that opening speech. She asked if I recognized this feeling from earlier experiences in my lifetime. Yes, I said. From a piano concert when I was a teenager. Ok, she said. Let´s rewind the film that is your life until we get to that concert. Are you there? Now step into your body. What does the feeling look like? Now send waves or rays of love from your heart to the origin of that feeling, choose a colour for the waves or rays that feels right…….
That´s how we worked. Visualizing event after event connected to my fear. From time to time returning to that question; you will hold that opening speech soon. On a scale from 1 to 10, how tense does that make you feel? And I tell you, after an hour of the tapping and the talking and the visualization of changing my inner…self protecting shortcuts…which I had created during my related life “traumas”… like reflexes, my mind automatically stopping me from having a similar, so disturbing experience ever again… After an hour, I felt, still tense, but not at all like before we started. Beginning at ten, after one session I was down to a 4! And after three session, when she reminded me I would hold that speech soon, I just smiled, and said I could actually no longer feel stressed when thinking about it. ! True! I still don´t believe it, but. It´s gone!
Thought field therapy.
Extremely interesting method for healing.
I can no longer claim to have stagefright.
Not that it makes me want to jump on stage.
But there is no numbing fear paralizing me, making it completely impossible if and when I need to … well. Perform.
I strongly dislike that word perform. Form in front of. With people watching, judging. I much prefer to write something and send it off. Or edit video, with me singing on it for example, and then send it off. Not to have to perform live.
To be present whilst video is running, is actually a kick, though; I tried that at my exhibition. It´s such a thrill to experience the audience responding; do they laugh where I laughed whilst making it? Do they see the link between words, images and melodies, the same way as me? Or in a different way, which would increase my understanding of my own work? And hence influence my future work, make it better than the last work I made?
It´s not that I don´t want to connect with the receiver of the products I make. I just find it hard to stand there in person, representing my work, feeling the feelings of the receivers.
Although this may not be exactly true anymore. As I did try to read out my Norwegian poems in a gallery called Henneberghuset in Esbjerg this spring. And I actually, to my great surprise, utterly enjoyed it!
I guess I will have to collect new experiences, to fully realize I am now free from stagefright. And all those old thoughts I still have, connected to my previous inner blockage, need to be replaced by more positive ones, relevant to my new inner reality.
Hey, next I will be seen on MTV (or whatever the newer music video channels are called), all naked, swinging a mike like a lasso over my punk rock mohawked head (purple and orange hair colour, of course), shouting “IS ANYBODY HUNGRYYYYYY? HUNGRY LIKE THE WOLF??? WANT A VIEW TO A KIIIIILL? WELL THAT AIN´T GONNA HAPPEN, DURAN DURAN WAS YESTERDAY, THIS IS THE NEW NOW, HAVE SOME OF THIIIIIIIS!!!”
Hmmmm. I guess I will have to learn a bit of el-guitar.
Or maybe rather a base guitar, plus a percussion setup I can play with pedals whilst doing those funky base riffs. Oh yeah. YEEAAHH!!
As I always say: Imagination is the only limitation.