- Mark: Okay, next question. What turns you on creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
- Jimmy Stevens: ASIANS!
- I love Allstate Intothewoods. ♥
Couple hours since Thanksgiving. Hopefully everyone had a great one. I know I did. <3
I used to be scared of feeling this way, because something told me it wouldn’t get me anywhere. I’ve seen so many relationships fail throughout my life, including my own, that I started thinking I wasn’t meant to be in one. I was hurt. A lot. To some people, this feeling meant nothing. It was thrown around. My own feelings were thrown around. After the experiences we’ve faced with others, we weren’t sure we knew how to feel this again. You promised me we’d learn how together. With you, it’s real, and it’s overwhelming, but I’m not afraid of it, now.
Those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind, so I’m not afraid of what anyone else thinks. This was meant to happen since that first day in Global Studies class. I’m sure as hell glad it did. :)
“The Nāda yoga system divides music into two categories: internal music, anahata, and external music, ahata. While the external music is conveyed to consciousness via sensory organs in the form of the ears, in which mechanical energy is converted to electrochemical energy and then transformed in the brain to sensations of sound, it is the anahata chakra, which is considered responsible for the reception of the internal music, but not in the way of a normal sensory organ. The anahata concept refers to one’s own personal sound vibrations, which is thought to be so closely associated with one’s self and the self that a person can not share their anahata with another human being. The individual can, according to Nāda yoga, “listen in on” their own anahata, their own “inner sound”. Such a process of inner awareness and sensitivity leads to increased self-recollectedness and finally to awakening. To concentrate on this inner sound as a support for meditation is very helpful to tame the mind, and when it has been clearly recognized, used for self-recollectedness in outer life as well. Eventually, it can be experienced as penetrating all matter and indeed vibrates eternally throughout the Creation.”
“Where there is no struggle, there is no strength.” -Oprah Winfrey
No one said it would be easy.
What do you want more than anything in the world?
Saturday will give me a better idea, I hope.
I hope I’m not too far behind the rest.
I want this more than anything in the world.. Please don’t let me find out I have too much to do before it’s too late.
I know that you’ll change lives as a teacher. I’m really excited to
hear that - do know that there will be times that you wonder why you
didn’t pick a more lucrative profession… like when your students
give you a bag made out of duck tape when your friends that are
doctors are getting free trips across the country…
I received this response in an email today from an old teacher and friend, Mr. Patrick Hayes. :) We’ve been emailing back and forth for the past couple days, and I must say, it’s helped me a lot. No, he wasn’t perfect. In fact, he was far from it, and we made sure as students who were quick to judge that he knew that. I told him I strongly disagreed with more than half of his decisions my freshman year. I was pretty cruel to him; many of us were. But when I found out on February 15th, 2009 that he was going to be leaving our school for various reasons, I was lost. I was confused. Many of us were. Maybe I overreacted, but I felt like I was completely losing someone whom I had built a bond with. Little did I know until that moment that I totally trusted Mr. Hayes with many things. Even though I didn’t necessarily agree with his advice, he always listened, and he listened with an unbiased ear. I knew that, no matter how trivial the situation may be, if it was something I just needed to vent about, he dropped whatever he was doing and really listened to what I had to say. Now, of course, I don’t expect every single person to drop what they’re doing and listen to me when I’m upset, but knowing that I had an adult figure there who had gotten to know me pretty well was relieving. He genuinely cared about me when I felt like no one in the world did. He cared about all of us. Over time, we developed a mutual respect for one another. I knew he loved music, and he always supported that about me. He always looked out for opportunities for me to join ensembles, nominate me for more playing opportunities, told me about all sorts of music camps, made me his sophomore drum major, and never gave up on me. Knowing that he still believes in me even when he’s a thousand miles away helps me know that I’m doing something right.
I miss you, Mr. Hayes. I’m sure I’m not the only one, but I’ll be one of the first to admit that Texas is lucky to have you.
Nothing beats the feeling I get when I’m performing.. It’s adrenaline, it’s a rush, it’s this infinite feeling that I can barely describe. I had the privilege to be a featured soloist tonight with the Lakes Area Community Band performing the solo, “Csardas,” written by Monti and arranged by our director, Mr. Steve Porch. It was an honor. Thanks so so so much to those who have come to at least one of my last two concerts for the support; it really does mean so much to me. (@Emily, DJ, Megan, Jamie, Ryley, Anthony, Trevor<3, and my fam!)
Me: Hey, where were you for PM&L practice yesterday?
Bill McGee: Ah, I was playin’ a gig for money.
Me: (sigh) Jealous. Sounds awesome.
Bill McGee: Don’t worry, someday you will.
Me: I sure hope so.
Bill McGee: You will. Weddings will be coming your way soon enough.
Me: I’ve done one for family before!
Bill McGee: Word of advice: Charge $200.
Me: That much?! Really?!
Bill McGee: No more. No less.
I CAN’T WAIT UNTIL I PERFORM FOR A CAREER. I can’t wait until more people hear me. :)
“Music is enough for a lifetime, but a lifetime is not enough for music.”
For me, music gets better all the time. It really does. I’ve had a few wonderful opportunities to perform with well-recognized ensembles such as the Northshore Concert Band and the IMEA District 7 Honors Band. Yesterday, I performed for the IMEA concert. Nothing can compare to what I felt. I was the third chair piccolo/flute player, and it was my second year performing with them.
When people ask me what I want to do for the rest of my life, they automatically add, “Well, I know it’s something with music, right?” They’re correct. Someday, I want to share my music with the world, whether I’m the conductor of a famous orchestra, or the featured soloist. It seems to be the only thing that makes sense to me. With days like November 13th, life is worth the hard times.
The day began at 5:30 with a long bus ride to Glenbrook South High School. There were five of us from my school and two from Lakes; we shared a bus. From ACHS it was Brian Chivers, Angela Barone, Trevor Olsen, Stephanie Kowalczyk, and me. Brian, Angela, and I were in the band and Trevor and Stephanie were in the choir. Rehearsal started promptly at 8AM. Our conductor this year was Robert Rumbelow, the relatively new director of bands at University of Illinois Urbana Champaign. He was an extremely happy man with a cheery disposition; you could tell he loved his job and he loved making music with our ensemble. Something I also enjoyed was that he had us introduce ourselves to the people around us. Last year, the environment seemed a tad more hostile. I quickly learned that the people around me were incredibly talented (as we all expected) but they were also very nice. :) Then the playing began. Just like last year, I was self-conscious and a bit timid at the beginning of the rehearsal. I stood out. I played piccolo. I was worried about what the other players would think of me. Over time, that died away. Our ensemble was… Not flawless, but I couldn’t find a word to describe how much I belonged in that ensemble. We had all worked incredibly hard to audition for it, and then we had all been working on our music pre-concert to make the day run smoothly. Our sound was full, beautiful, and it felt right. Our rehearsal did, indeed, run smoothly and went as scheduled. After a quick break for lunch, we dove back into our playing once again. All 150 kids used their years of musical ability and, being part of the ensemble, you could tell everyone was giving it their ALL. There wasn’t a single one of us slacking off. Each and every student that was there deserved to be there, because we understood exactly what was expected of us. We were to give the best concert we possibly could. After listening to the orchestra, we warmed up while the choir was out their blowing people away. Then, it was time to perform. We were ending the program this year. I knew many were coming to support me; I wasn’t nervous. Not this time. I was happy and prepared. We were all ready. I never want to forget how that concert made me feel. The music grabbed a tight hold of me and didn’t want to let go, even after the last note rang through the high school auditorium. Everyone gave us standing ovations at the conclusion… I had never experienced that before. At the end when we all stood up to acknowledge the applause, we knew the concert was too good for words to describe. Mr. Rumbelow shook hands with everyone in the front row, and I thanked him for working with us. He was such a kind man. I hope to work with him again someday. I met amazing people, amazingly talented people that day.
I was congratulated afterwards by people I love dearly. My parents, my friends, my other family, Trevor, and his family, too. We celebrated with dinner, where everyone made acquaintances and had a great time. It was a perfect end to a perfect day.
Music is what we do. For some of us, it’s the only thing we do. Music says the things that words can’t say. I love it more than anything in this world. I will dedicate my life to it. I won’t give up, no matter what happens. I swear to continue to give it all I’ve got, and only hope and pray for more days like this in return. <3
ONE. MORE. DAY.
-No school tomorrow.
-Veteran’s day performance = Stars & Stripes Piccolo Solo
-IMEA is in three days.
-I might get to perform with the Waukegan Symphony Orchestra in April.
-The Community Band concert is on Monday. I’m pumped for the Csardas solo.
-Trevor’s making me dinner tomorrow night. :)
-I’M GOING TO SLEEP. GOODNIGHT. <3
“I wish, more than anything, more than life, more than the moon.” -Into the Woods
I think I’ve taken a step in the right direction today. The decision is close. I will get there. I’ll show the world what I’ve got, and I’ll give this everything I’ve got. The sacrifices will be large, the stakes are high, and I have everything to lose. Who knows what I’ll gain? I’ve given my body, soul, and mind to music. I know it won’t let me down if I keep pushing.
Is it ever okay to break a promise?
Hello world, hope you’re listenin’. Forgive me if I’m young or speaking out of turn.
On the outside, it all seems fine. On the inside, it’s not quite there.
Several things need to happen in the next week. And a lot is on my mind.
1. I miss playing. I miss really playing. When will it all come back like it came back for my friends? I was in a rut from April to July, was good for a while in July, and then I hit one from late July until now. I hate when money is an issue, but when you need private lessons, there’s no other option. I’ve been studying solo since July, and I was incredibly happy to make IMEA, but I need to step it up and get ready for Solo and Ensemble and college. Music is becoming more serious, and I have to be prepared.
2. …This is old. You messed up. I messed up. I want you gone, and you still try to be in my life after you said you’d leave me alone. We don’t owe each other anything. I just want you gone. If you cared, you’d leave me alone.
3. I miss those I can’t be with, whether they’re from Antioch, Lakes, Allstate ITW, DMA, UWW, or anything I’ve been so fortunate to be apart of. I miss the seniors, too. Some of you have known me since I was in the sixth grade, and I had the greatest times with you guys, particularly over the summer. My life isn’t the same without you guys making me laugh and being there for me. I’ve been checking up on everybody on Facebook like crazy, curious and genuinely hoping that they’re all doing well. Some of those I miss are right here in Antioch and it kills me to know I’m growing apart from so many of them, but I’ve changed, they’ve changed, and that’s life. There’s not much I can do to fix this except stay in touch with people.
4. You two fighting is messing a lot up for you and me. I’m having to ask my friends for so much, and I can’t even thank them enough. I owe so many people money and gas and I really can’t say how much I appreciate it. Not many people are aware, but my situation is quite unfavorable right now at home and I’ve needed my friends for support more than ever. I’m just glad I do have wonderful people around to help keep me going.
5. My grades need to be better. I’m trying.
YOU’RE BEAUTIFUL, INSIDE AND OUT. I swear upon the musical gods of the world that I’m not mad at you in the slightest way. Fo realz.
<3 That is all.
The yelling, the fighting, the crying… I can only hope and pray it will all be okay. Is it possible to miss someone you never really knew or had in the first place? I think so… I don’t know.
I just wanna play in all of the music ensembles I’m in and not go to school… Kthanks.
Anyone second this motion?
I did the same countdown to last year’s IMEA. Apparently some countdowns annoy people, but it’s my Tumblr, so it’s my life, right? :P
I had a great Halloween weekend, just for a little bit of recap. The Dungeon of Doom on Saturday was great, and I was glad to be with my old group o’ friends for the first time in a while. Now that marching band is over, socializing with non-band people is becoming acceptable again. Sunday was great. Brunch with Amanda, Jordan, and Trevor was nice. Jordan, I missed you. I hope you don’t think that I’m ever ditching you, and if I do, slap me across the face… Or tell me. Telling me would suffice. Trick-or-Treating was fun! (Apparently it’s illegal?!) Saw tons of people around town, visited my dad, then chilled with Trevor for the rest of the night. Good times. <3
Found out IMEA results today. Third chair flute, playing piccolo. I can’t wait… So proud of Angela Barone for getting second chair trombone, Brian Chivers getting fifth chair tuba, and of course I’m also proud of Trevor Olsen and Stephanie Kowalczyk for making it. :) District 7 performs November 13th at 3PM at Glenbrook South HS, so I hope to see lots of people there!
Time to go study. Adieu.