There’s a big bell conference going on in Salt Lake this June. We’ve known about it for over a year, as our spring concert coincides with this event. People in our bell choir have discussed going to the event, but I was deterred by the $420 price tag. Yes, that includes 3 nights hotel accommodations, workshops, classes, and a few meals, but it just seemed like SO much. And who can commit to leaving the family for 3-4 days?
But when our bell director told us that it really would be a great experience, and compared to other conferences she has gone to, this was a bargain, I started to think that it could be fun. She also stressed that we need to have some kind of presence there, and that she was going to go, even if it was for only one day.
I mentioned it to Ryan, thinking that he would agree with me, that that amount of money and time were just out of the question. Instead, he seemed interested, asking questions like, “when is it?” “where is it?” “Won’t you be downtown for your rehearsals and concert anyway?” When he was assured that the timing didn’t line up with his upcoming trip to India, he said, “If you want to do it, you should do it.” WHAT? So, then I figured I had better decide if I was going to do it, or not. I emailed my bell choir friends asking if any of them were going to sign up. I don’t want to be there alone, ’cause I’m not quite that brave. I heard back from a couple of them that they were either thinking about it, one had already registered and was planning on rooming with her sister, and one was planning on registering right away.
Sunday night one of my bell buddies called me. “How serious are you about this bell conference?” she asked. I told her that I was thinking about it, but I would want to register with a friend, since it’s double occupancy. I wouldn’t want to be put with just anybody. She told me that she was seriously considering it, and would I want to room with her?
I told her I would discuss it and then call her back. We looked at calendars, and he said he thought I should do it. “I won’t be able to do a play this year, especially if I do this,” I said.
“No play?” he said, “Who do I make the check out to? If I had realized it was this or the play, I would have told you sooner to go for it.” Hmmm. The truth about how much he loves it when I do a play each summer is coming out. To tell the truth, I had already pretty much realized I couldn’t do a play with Alpine Community Theater this summer, even though I really really love being in a musical. With our concert so late in June, and there are many Saturday rehearsals already scheduled in June, and it’s ‘Annie’, and there really aren’t many parts for women except for Miss Hannigan. Maybe I’ll try out just for fun to see if I could get that part….nope, better not. I might get sucked in. I would like my kids to try out, though, since there are a whole bunch of parts for kids, and it would be fun to be involved as just a parent, not an actor/parent.
Can I just tell you what a great supportive husband I have? Not only does he not complain when I’m gone every Wednesday night, some Saturdays, some Sunday mornings, and pretty much a whole week in December, but he encourages me in this hobby/calling. Maybe he feels guilty because he gets to travel to strange countries and leave me alone with the kids for a week at a time, or maybe he realizes that I don’t do all that much and he can manage without me for a few days, but he’s awesome. And look! This conference coincides with the week of girls’ camp! That means it will be pretty quiet around here without two of the girls.
So, I did it. Paid the money, choose my classes and signed up for a ringing level, and I’m excited. Although, after this week, with bells four times this week in preparation for our big numbers on Music and the Spoken word, I realize it’s not just going to be fun, it will be exhausting. But good for me. I need to stretch outside my comfort zone and do more things that are a little scary or hard.
And it’s good for my family to see me interested in hobbies, and doing my own things, not just ALWAYS being the mom that does everything for them.
And speaking of bells, we did great on Music and the Spoken word this morning. We played this song, but not the whole song. It was a cut version to keep in under 4 minutes. Super hard, but we rocked it.
(this video is from our concert in 2008, so we have improved since then, by the way).