Hymn Fest


Numbers! Numbers! Numbers! I hate numbers. I can’t remember them and I’m tired of having to write them down. I’m tired of trying to find where I’ve written them down! We live in a society that has a code for everything. There are codes to get into most web sites, many building and hallways. When I worked at the retirement community in Atlanta, I had little pieces of paper stuck in my pocket for the door to each hallway.  Now, I keep codes in my Android.

I was poor at numbers and math before my brain injury and it is much worse now. Way back in 7th grade I was in a slow learner’s math class. I remember being embarrassed going into that room because most of my other classes were advanced. Whenever I went to that class, I uttered a little prayer. “Please God. Don’t let anyone see me go in here. They’ll think I’m dumb and I’m not!” Caring what people think has been a life -long challenge of mine and if I’m not careful, I’ll slip back into my 7th grade thinking. The reality is, I’m just fine the way I am, in fact, better than fine.

Lately my challenges have been particularly difficult. On April 26th the choirs at Grace Covenant Presbyterian Church and First Presbyterian Church of Asheville combined for a Hymn Fest. The choral composer, John Ferguson along with the choral directors of both choirs, worked with us.

Grace Covenant Presbyterian and First Presbyterian churches of Asheville preparing for the Hymn Fest.

Grace Covenant Presbyterian and First Presbyterian churches of Asheville preparing for the Hymn Fest.

While I’m familiar with First Presbyterian where it took place, it still was a new environment for me. I’ve already written about the Wednesday night rehearsal (April 24, post) but the remainder of the Hymn Fest was also difficult. Brain Injury survivors often need to know exactly what is going to happen or it throws us off. I’ve learned how to take deep breaths and “rest my brain” out in the open, when necessary but change is still difficult for me.

I’ve even considered quitting the choir because of the flexibility needed. I’d like to see the worship leader’s faces instead of their backsides which are what we in the choir see! However, I enjoy singing so much that I’ve decided to continue. I’ll do what I need to do to take care of myself while trying not to care what anyone thinks.


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