Saturday, May 8, 2010

Another Blessing.

I have a lot to say in this blog. This is going to be very long. I have a lot of thanks to express as well.

Today was the big day. One of the most important, crucial, and memorable days of my sophomore year, and probably will be throughout my high school career and my whole life.

Today was the day I competed at the Washington State Youth Music Competition.

And I'm so blessed and thankful to God for everything he has done for me. For everything he has provided when I was at my worst, when I lacked confidence, skill, constantly repeating failures and dissapointments. He was the one that lifted me up from these heavy feelings that would drown me and keep me to the ground. I'm forever thankful.

Today, I became state champion 1st place for the piano players in the state competition. In May 22nd, all first place musicians for the competition will receive their trophy award and have a concert either at the UW performance hall or the KOAM radio station's hall. I'm grateful for being able to go to state the 2nd time in high school, the first time being in freshman year with my beloved Rosamunde String Quartet. I hope today's memorable day will be one of the best Mother's Day presents for my mom and grandma. The proud look on my mom's face said it all. I'm glad my mom is my mom. She's my bestfriend.

After hours of practice, frustration, sweat, exhaustion..... my hard work did pay off. I did it. I still can't believe it. I don't know how I got here so quick. I remember last week during 5th, Richard or Patrek told me that I would never know if I'd get 1st place at state, after I told them I was nervous and feeling stressed out. I just cut them off and said there would be no way I would get 1st place. Pretty ironic, looking at how things turned out huh? haha, wow.

Honestly, I thought I would have never ranked in state because I found out about the music competiton a month and a half ago, and I had to prepare 2 big pieces in that amount of time. Having to come home and practice from 3:30 until 9 or at the latest 11 PM was not the kind of life style I was planning to have in my sophomore year but to do my best, that's what I went through.

And I have no regrets of my sacrifice, and undying faith and belief in God, my beloved parents, my supporters, and myself.

I always doubted and thought as a sophomore, I would never be able to rank in a music state competition because in the majority of music competitions, the rankings only go up to 3rd place unlike sports where are they are scoreboards that show rankings up to even 10th - 20th place. Looking back, I remember so many times I dissapointed myself from not getting the results I wanted at competitions, concerts, recitals, and etc. Around the beginning of this school year, there was another big piano competition I entered and the unnecessary mistakes I made (from being nervous/sudden stage fright) during my performance just ruined my chance of placing top in the competition). I felt so wronged, and the results just hit me so hard I cried because for all those months, all those hours of daily practice, sacrifice, and even crying from dissapointment was such a tiring, repetitive process I lived through just to do well at the competition. And I didn't. The best my piano teacher saw me during lessons and practice was not what I presented at the competition performance. and that is what killed me inside. See, there were times where I literally thought I would never reach my musical goals, that I would never be good enough. It wasn't just in sophomore year but freshman year. I had another piano competition at the start of freshman year but I never got the results or played the best I could, due to my nervousness. I started music competitions back in middle school, and even then... I dissapointed myself over and over again. I failed so many times.

People questioned my skill, my dedication, my performance numerous times. People would say, "you have more experience with violin. Do more violin competitions, than piano" but knowing that piano was my greater passion, I set aside their words and continued to my best. Although at times I did feel that violin would make it easier for me to get good results at competitions when comparing my experience and skill for both piano and violin, I knew deep inside my number one musical passion was piano. I'm grateful my parents never gave up on me, and supported me through thick and thin, regardless of how hard it was to manage everything.

For all these years, when people said no.... I said yes. And today is the day I can say I overcame the biggest obstacle - I believe it was my perseverance and trust in God that he would plan what is best for me, was what kept me going. And that is one thing I'm proud about myself till this day. Regardless of what happened, I never questioned God. I never questioned why this or that happened. If I was sad, depressed or angry, I made the effort to never blame it on God, because things happened for a reason. And now, I understand why I went through all those experiences - to make me stronger. And it is now, where I can advance and go even faster and faster in music. This is the start.

Today, proved all my doubts wrong. Even though I am not perfect or as advanced or experienced in a wide circle of musicians, one thing that will make me unique will be my undying stubborness - the unwillingness to stop until I feel satisfied with my work and practice. And I believe it was this attitude that got me through all the failures I experienced, bringing me back to my feet and finally having my shining moment. I have realized just because you fail once, twice, or even a hundred times... you should never give up on something you love to do, because one day... you'll reach your goals. You will. You just got to have faith and patience.

Right now, I'm too grateful and have too much on my mind to express how I'm feeling.

Today has been a long, joyful day. I got home not too long ago, around 11:28 PM-ish. Today was a day celebrating the cultivation of all my hard work for the past month and a half, Mother's day, my grandmother's moving-away, Korean BBQ, and a stroll down Seattle downtown. Today has been amazing. It couldn't have been any better.

I will explain more about the competition and it's details later, if I remember to edit this.

But for now, I'm tired and have said my share of words.

Thank you for those who supported and believed me in me, when I didn't. And most of all,

thank you God. If it weren't for you and my strong belief in you.... I would have been so lonely, hopeless, and nowhere near where I am today.

Today is not a day fully dedicated to me, regardless of what I overcame, accomplished, and how I feel. Instead, today is a day dedicated and centered on God and my supporters, especially my parents. Because truthfully, without the support and extra push for all these opportunities, I would have never found another musical passion in my life - piano.

Thank you so much. I'm so very grateful. Thank you so much. I really have no other way to put it. My parents years of support and meticulous planning are slowly paying off. I promise to make them proud and do my best in return of all their sacrifices.

I'm so very blessed, Lord.

Oh, and happy Mother's day. Love you, mom. Always and forever

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