We’re about a seven on the ten-point-all-children-must-play-something scale. Or maybe a six.
Opie’s older sister had no interest in any instrument, but she liked to sing. So we’ve kept her in various choirs and choruses since second grade. Didn’t push the instrument thing because, honestly, I couldn’t see how we would fit it into her schedule.
Opie is different. I’ve always felt that she would benefit from playing an instrument. No rational reason, just strong mom intuition. I did notice that she could sing on key early on, but she didn’t have any of those “stunned by music” moments that I read about.
As she grew, she expressed some interest in the violin. We got her a tiny one, but didn’t follow up well with lessons and the interest faded quickly.
When she hit third grade, string instruments were an option through the schools. But no interest.
When she hit fourth grade, wind instruments became an option. And this time I put my foot down: two years of the musical instrument of her choice, or join chorus. No music was not an option. She picked oboe (a story for later) and has thrived–even excelled.
Sometimes I am bothered by how easily we might have made the easy choice and just let her skate by without an instrument and lessons. We would have missed out unlocking her talent, something at which she has genuine skill. But I also wonder, what other things have we missed? So easy to go down that crazy-making path….