Coffee has been my friend today. It helped me stay focused enough to finish what I needed to before work. All day long I’ve been wracked by anxiety. I can feel it rising from my stomach to my lungs and choking me. The world seems fake to me.

I have drowned myself in playing/practicing today. It makes me tear up when I think about how helpful my instrument is when I’m in a bad place mentally/emotionally. I have always had my violin there to comfort me. All I need to do is hold it in my hands and the smooth wood of the neck makes me feel like I am at home. Then when the chin rest touches my neck my heart rate begins to slow. Once the bow touches the strings I am somewhere else for as long as I need. All that exists at that moment is the music I’m playing. Today I did something very cathartic. For about an hour I just played anything and everything that came to mind. I don’t improvise usually. I’m a classical musician so that’s pretty out of the question for me, but today I just needed to play my own music for just myself.

Then I got down to business and worked out several more pages of music – marking the fingerings and bowings I want to use for performance. That’s pretty much all I’ve been doing of late since I’m stuck on the academic side of the project. Once I work my way through all the pieces I have then I might have some more perspective on the composer as a whole.

I want to thank everyone who has been commenting here and also those who have sent me emails. You help me more than you can ever know.

And lastly, I want you all to know how awesome Jack has been the past few days. I am lucky to have him in my life as my husband. He usually knows just what to do to cheer me up and we had a breakthrough on Friday. Friday was the day I got the letter that started all this anxiety. We hadn’t gone grocery shopping in recent memory and therefore, had nothing to make for supper. We decided to go out to eat even though I wasn’t really in the right state of mind. We hadn’t even talked about the letter in person yet. We went to a restaurant and after about 5 minutes of talking at the table I was crying so hard I had to dismiss myself from the table to try to get my wits about me. I went out to the car and as I walked away from the table I realized that everyone in the restaurant was going to think I was having a fight with Jack. Oh well, I just had to tell myself not to worry what people were thinking. I just needed to stop crying. I got in the car, shut the door and just sobbed for a good minute or two. I took some deep breaths and blew my nose, fixed my make up and made my way back inside to our table. Jack and I had a good conversation and he made me feel better just by looking at me with his loving eyes. I’m so glad I have him!!!!!!!