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By Marylin Kilsby
Have you ever decided to do something that, on the face of it, is crazy and runs the risk of failure? A recent Reflection was about someone who did a sponsored skydive as part of her 50th birthday celebrations, which some might consider crazy. I have just come back from a holiday music school at Berwang in the Austrian Tyrol.
I play the clarinet and am profoundly deaf. This holiday was about sound, right? Making nice, in tune, musical sounds, blending in with others. Can a profoundly deaf person do that? Crazy!
Music has been part of my life since childhood, despite being born with a hearing loss which became much worse in my early twenties and has changed again over the years. I wondered whether a music school was a sensible thing to do but I really wanted to do it. I’m glad I did because it was amazing. I met many friendly and welcoming people, most of whom really went out of their way to make sure that I was following what was being said, both during rehearsals and socially. I thanked, and continue to thank, God for them.
However, being deaf isn’t easy, as we know. There were times when I was totally lost, especially when we were rehearsing in a school gym, with its high ceiling and loud echoes. Everything sounded as though one was in a swimming pool and it was hard to keep time when the beginning of a beat didn’t sound clearly. I was extremely tired just from all the concentration required. My worst experience while in Berwang was was being made an example of musically by someone who didn’t seem interested in being deaf aware and making communication easier. I never did find out exactly what I was doing wrong!
So, the main challenge I faced was the deafness aspect? Not exclusively. It was to thank God for the person who wasn’t so helpful. And to forgive him.
One way to forgive, I’ve found, is to pray for the one who needs our forgiveness. Just the act of prayer changes our attitude. That person needs Jesus, just as we all do.
Would I go on another holiday music school? Oh yes!
View previous Reflection articles
Home is where the Heart is
Beyond Fear to Exhiliarating Trust
Sticks and Stones
Beauty in the Chaos
God and Creation
The Lord is near
Having fun and taking new steps with our friends
A friend who stands where we stand, and weeps with us
Remain in Me
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