Mid life crisis: Heartstrings

I joke about my mid life crisis but you know that behind all jokes there is a kernal of truth. In my case it’s not a kernal, it’s the whole corn stalk, babe. It may, in fact end up being an entire crop if things get too outta hand so in the interest of preserving the little sanity I already own I will be writing it all down.

As you already know I am a musician among other things. I studied piano for 12 years. I studied Cello for 6 years. I write, I sing, I dance the hokey pokey and I turn it all around…cause that’s what I’m all about. I’ve always wanted to learn to play the guitar so now that I’ve turned 40 I’m going to learn. I do ALREADY know a couple of chords. I can do BOTH the “easy” G and the full on three fingers on the frets G and something I think is D, or close to it…yeah, I’m THAT good.

So, as I’m imagining how awesome and cool and sexy I’ll be when I whip out my guitar in the near future at some open mic night I decide to poll a couple of guitar playing friends for advice on which instrument to buy. I think, oh, I’ll ask these guys…they’ll know what’ll be cool. So I’m thinking this in my head:

cool sexy electric

and my friend, Steve comes back with this:

Not sexy but great sounding acoustic

What? How could you miss that what I was goin for was the cool, sexy, “I’m not really 40” guitar?

And then it comes to me….ohhhhhhhh…yeah, see? Here’s the thing; I asked a musician for his advice and in his sage thinking he actually did something really nice for me. He assumed that I actually wanted to learn to be a good guitar player, that I might actually want to develop a craft and have it sound good too and that was a really nice way to think about it.

You see, what this did for me was twofold. First, it got my focus right which is that I actually DO want to learn to play and love playing in the process and second, it reminded me that sexy is as sexy does. Get your minds out of the gutter, people while I explain. People can look beautiful, attractive, sexy, what have you, at first blush. It’s not hard to find the right haircolor, the right clothes, the sultry electric guitar to make the package but in the end, it’s just that, packaging. It’s what lies inside and works it’s way out that makes the gift. This is what keeps people coming back over and over to have the conversation, to go deeper, to understand more fully, to give comfort, to offer love.

Turning 40 I suppose I’m starting to understand this better by trial and error…via my mid life crisis. I think there will be more of these. I gave it a “category” and everything. I just hope that I come to the kernal of truth in each crisis as quickly as I came to this one. At some point, I hope I will be able to rename the category, “Mid Life Wisdom” but I’m just not there yet.

I start lessons in a couple of weeks. I let you know how it goes. First I need to go find my non sexy but great sounding guitar.


11 thoughts on “Mid life crisis: Heartstrings

  1. Bravo Mrs.

    Think it is great that you are taking up guitar.

    I so agree with
    your statement: People can look beautiful, attractive, sexy, what have you, at first blush. It’s not hard to find the right haircolor, the right clothes, the sultry electric guitar to make the package but in the end, it’s just that, packaging. It’s what lies inside and works it’s way out that makes the gift. This is what keeps people coming back over and over to have the conversation, to go deeper, to understand more fully, to give comfort, to offer love.
    You go girl!

    thanks, angie…what a great name you have… : )
    Mrs M

  2. Mrs you remind me of me when I turned 40! I was searching for things, wondering how I got to be who I am, where I am going and OMG my life is half over! So last year I decided to take piano lessons, I did it for a year, and found out the 40 something mind isn’t as elastic as it used to be when coming to learn new things. I read somewhere about 40 somethings being termed ‘middlessence’, where we are starting a new chapter in our lives and willing to throw convention out the window and live and try new things. So here I am plunking away at the piano and can actually play Jingle Bells with two hands – WOW. Now that is exciting.

    As for feeling and looking sexy, you can have the package and all the goods, but sometimes even the most beautiful people don’t have the inner goods to be truly sexy.

    Play your beautiful acoustic guitar and then you can graduate to the blue one! I have a feeling no matter what you will make that guitar sing like there is no tomorrow and look sexy doing it.

    ROCK ON!!!!

    Oh, HH…see, compliments like that will earn you a place on my BFF list. lol Seriously, thank you for that.
    Mrs M

  3. mrs., it always sobers me up when thinking about those major birthdays to ask myself, “And, just WHAT is the alternative here?” There is only one alternative: have the birthday and enjoy it. You don’t even want to think about the other choice.

    Acoustic guitars are cool. You’ll be givin’ Ann Wilson (Heart) a run for her money before ya know it! You go, girl!

    I love that, “what is the alternative here?” LOL…Ann Wilson? I can do you one better…I was thinking Lita Ford, remember HER?
    Mrs M

  4. Oh man mrs! If you’re having a mid-life crisis this year, does that mean I’m in for one in 2 years? *gulp*

    Cuz ya know…..I’ll always be younger than you. 😛 (shameless, I’m just shameless)

    Those guitars remind me of something funny….you’re thinking sleek dancin shoes and he’s thinkin geriatric gramma shoes. bahahahaha

    Yikes, who knows…maybe you’ll be able to avoid it all together if you start working REALLY hard on it now. LOL. Criminy, I sure hope nobody will be equating me with geriatric gramma shoes at this point…’course Steve IS a number of years younger than I…shazaam…maybe you’re right.
    Mrs M

  5. Mrs I’ve just a few years on ya and I am definitely not wearing granny shoes yet! Still the higher and pointier the better! As I said before ROCK ON!

    We all have a song to sing or play, you may be a poet, a writer, a baker whatever you all have your own instrument of destiny!

    Ack, let’s not even go there with the higher and pointier part..4 children, babe…remember I’ve had 4 children. LOL
    Mrs M

  6. Thanks Mrs.
    When I started the blog, it logs me in this way, so how do you like my
    avatar? I think thats what you call it. I really am a hit and miss on this thing. What I know probably wouldnt fit in a thimble, but oh well….lol!
    Did anybody ever tell ya how kind you come across on this site? cuz you do.

    I like it! It took me forever to figure out the avatar part. Don’t underestimate yourself. Just write your mind and see how it goes. Blogging is more like an information dump most of the time.

    Thank you for that compliment! My tendancy is to NOW say how mean I can be but I’m not gonna do that this time because I’d like to live in the good today…lol. Having someone see kindness really does make me want to aspire to be that way more often. I appreciate that.
    Mrs M (angela)

  7. mrs., I must have slept through that part of the 80s, but I took a gander over yonder at YouTube and saw Lita singing “Kiss Me Deadly.” All I can say, girl, is subtle she is not. But, given that I’ve been through this birthday meltdown thing before, I can understand why you would pick Lita. Here’s the song that commemorates thoughts this drastic: http://youtube.com/watch?v=XW15O-JXs5E

    Rock on, babe. Rock on! Now I must return to the endless rows and rows of vegetables on my kitchen cupboard, all lined up looking at me. CARROTS! Report to the chopping block. Why is losing weight so BRUTAL? I am a carrot killer, a broccoli basher, a green pepper petrifier, and a lettuce lasher. God, what will become of me?!

    The real irony is that Lita is not quite my genre…lol…I just couldn’t think of any punk chick guitar players off the top of my head. What’s interesting is that while I DO listen to male fronted groups once in a while NOW…mostly it’s chick rock or chick folk for me…back then it was all hard core punk and mostly male dominated. Good grief, what does that say about me? ack.
    Mrs M

  8. Mrs. love what you said above on blogging being Information dumps most of the time.. may use that title…lol!
    Now Angela is a great name yes?
    I already been through the Mid life crisis thing, taking up something new is helpful, maybe some hormones? lol. I have heard a lot about the ones made especially for you….having a brain F***! can’t remember what the heck they called it…part of the crisis thing…uh, what are we talking about?

    Sure, babe…go ahead and use that, no charge. : )
    Mrs M

  9. I think we go through all kinds of crisis points in our lives. In our childhood it was making friends and being popular or unpopular. In our early teens it was usually our first love. In our late teens it was wondering what the heck we were going to do after high school. In our twenties it was panic because we still hadn’t figured out what we wanted to be yet and then poof you are expected to be an adult. Then we progress to our late 20’s and most of were busy trying to find a mate, hopefully for life. In our 30’s we are now settling down and accumulating the stuff that adults are supposed to accumulate and not knowing exactly how to pay for it and then we decide we need offspring. Now that in itself is the biggest crisis and joy most of us undertake, because when it arrives you realize that it is you – YOU are the one who should know the mom/dad stuff and make the decision, you have to be able to look after yourself. So I think that raising children is a managed crisis. Now we are quickly approaching the slippery slope of 40 – why everyone freaks out at 40 is beyond me other than the fact the average life is 75 to 80 so what if we are halfway to the dirt nap. Anyway I digress there, in our 40’s we are now starting to think we have arrived we have the house, car, kids and toys. The real meaningful thing out of that particular group of goodies is the kid(s), forget about the rest its just stuff. Your kid doesn’t care what kind of car you drive or if you live in a million dollar mansion or how much stuff you have. All they care about is having a home where they are loved. Back to our journey of crisis, so we have broken it down. I think we realize in our 40’s that we can’t do everything we did in our 20’s, our body is just not as forgiving as it used to be. I can remember snickering at my mom taking a 20 minute power nap on the couch, I don’t laugh about that anymore because when I sit down sometimes shazam I am asleep. Our 40’s is also a time when no matter how fit we are things start to tell us that they don’t want to work as hard or are changing. My bones creak more and I ache more when I exercise – you know it is sad when you have to take Ibuprofen or Tylenol because just thinking of exercising brings on the aches. Ah and then we women we start changing, our hormones go whacko, our time for childbearing is almost done and we get into perimenopause. I think we should call this point in our lives mid-life pause, because we need to pause and take a look at what we have done so far and if you ask me it is pretty miraculous.

    Men you are not immune from this either *ahem* less hair on the head more on the back and wrinkles and maybe a little tummy. Remember you don’t find your youth through a younger woman, you find it in the woman who loved you when you were young. We truly remember those things and cherish them and its enough to take us through the golden years.

    Anyway back to the journey this is where I become an observer now as I haven’t hit those stages yet, at 50-60 we are preparing for our retirement and the kids are out of house, hopefully they are going to college. This is a time when we celebrate each other and go on new adventures to rekindle the flame – it doesn’t have to be a giant candle of passion, a birthday size candle flame will do. 60-70 We are retiring and hopefully in good health, this is when issues with dementia and other diseases of aging start to take a toll. (I know I see it every day at work in a neurology office) Hopefully you will have good health and start enjoying the golden years, seeing your kids start families, being the grammy and the poppa, getting to sugar the kids up and send them home to mom. 70 and beyond well anything after that is a gift and hopefully you will have your mate beside you celebrating say your 60th wedding anniversary – wow that is a long time, or seeing great grandchildren.

    I guess what I am trying to say is life is a managed crisis, sometimes we deal with it better than others, some days we don’t. On the days you don’t sit down, breathe into a paper bag and count your blessings. Remember there isn’t a pill or cream for everything, sometimes we take away our ability to feel and experience the very things that make us wise.

    Now I’m going off to bake cookies with my dd! That is managed chaos, but I wouldn’t trade this afternoon for the world!

    A managed crisis…a fallen world…yes, we take it one moment at a time. I like that.
    Mrs M

  10. Oh Mrs. M, I can just see you now – Alone on a stage, sitting on a stool with an acoustic guitar, singing Blowin’ in the Wind – nude, like Jenny in Forrest Gump!! Have fun you sexy bitch!!

    Well, that’s quite a visual Princess…lol. I’ll let you know when the sexy bitch show starts up. I’ll need all the audience members I can bribe.
    Mrs M

  11. I have a guitar which somebody left on a bus – no name, no label, no claim for 6 months so I got to keep it. It’s a 12 string and I can’t play it… in fact I’m only one chord ahead of you, I can do C as well… never mind, learn that an you’ve got “I’m a Believer” pretty much cracked!



    Someday when I come to your house for tea you can play it for me. I’ll sing harmony but I get to be Mickey.
    Mrs M

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