Did I ever tell you I was an exchange student in high school? I lived in a village in Paraguay for six months when I was 15. 

This was a long long time ago during a period we like to call, "the early 90s" and it was all the way back when international phone calls were really expensive and there was no internet. Or maybe there was email, but that greedy Al Gore was hogging it all.

Anyway, when I left home part of the deal was understanding that communication with my family would be mostly through letters and that I would be able to call home maybe once every two weeks, or even better, once a month. They told us that because of that, writing letters was kind of a tricky art form. You see, I could be down in the dumps on Monday and write a letter lamenting to my parents which they would receive on the following Monday. They get this super sad letter from their super sad daughter and start freaking out, but really, I was bummed out one week earlier on a rainy afternoon. By the time they get the letter, I'm fine, I'm having fun. No biggie. That's why they told us, "Don't write letters to your folks when you're sad. They won't get that it was a moment in time. They'll think you've been suffering for the past week and a half."

That was good advice. 

Remember that last blog I wrote about the hard day of recording? I sounded distressed. I was distressed for about an hour and then I was totally fine. I chose to illustrate one moment and that one emotion that colored that one moment, but that's all that was. I got the rough tracks sent to me after our session and I got so excited to start listening and working up arrangements for the next session when we add instrumentation. 

The take away from the recording session once I got over my horrible self is that, yes, truly, I need to be in that room more often to learn that art form. It's the only way to get comfortable with creating in that manner. 

I hate going off the high dive. Partly because I hate heights and also because I only ever force myself to go off it like once a season to prove to my children I can do it (because for some reason they like the idea of Mom going off the high dive). If I practiced going off it more often then I'd be cool with the high dive. I wouldn't love it, but I would make peace with it. 

Honestly, I've got a better chance of falling in love with the studio than falling in love with that stupid platform looming over that pool of water. 

P.S., I got better at writing letters to my parents on the days when I wasn't sad in South America. It was a hard six months, but it changed my life forever. I learned Spanish, I realized how much I could handle (LOTS), I learned how to do things myself. Every new experience really is an extension of that first adventure. We all have stories like that. 

Tune in next time when I tell you about all the songs I've written since last year's Song School!