I don't really celebrate birthdays. If others are offended that I forget theirs, maybe they'll find it reassuring that I often don't remember that it's my own birthday until half the day has passed. Thanks to Facebook, I'm now reminded of each birthday as soon as I fire up the computer.
If you had asked my 20 year old self what my 50 year old self would be up to, he would have predicted that:
- I would be firmly established as a band director in a major high school or in a college.
- Along with that high profile high school or college band directing job would be a family and a nice house. I'm not big into white picket fences, but I love porches. That house would have a big wraparound porch.
- I would be playing trombone in a local group, either a jazz band, concert band, or chamber ensemble like a brass quintet.
Well, 20 year old self, the joke's on you. None of that happened. Instead, I am a freelance musician doing the following:
- Holding the part time Director of Music position at Northwest UU Congregation.
- Performing as a freelance jazz guitarist and singer.
- Teaching guitar, ukulele, and piano lessons.
- Working as a freelance music engraver.
How did I end up here? Who cares? I love what I do. I don't have that one steady job or a nuclear family, but in spite of some nasty twists and turns, I've managed to create a life filled with music. I'm unable to play the trombone anymore, but I'm having a blast with jazz guitar, which is an endless puzzle to be solved. I love all my students, and in my NWUUC music director job, I'm surrounded by caring people and a supportive staff.
So here's to 50 more years! As for today, I'm going to celebrate by going about my regular day with a lighter heart.