Our daughter Melissa went to a small college where she majored in music and business. While there, her piano instructor encouraged her to go ahead and get her Master's degree while she was still single. The extensive practice sessions that required at the graduate level demand focused attention and commitment.
Melissa did go on, completing a total of seven years of college after 12 years of home school. Nineteen years of school to reach the high point of her education -- a Master of Music degree! Under the tutelage of Dr. Hinson, one of the most accomplished musicians and composers in the southeastern United States, she was in good hands.
I remember a late-night phone call Melissa made to us that first week on campus. "Mom," her voice was quivering, "I don't know if I'm in the right place." When I asked her to explain, she said, "There are so many other pianists here far beyond my ability - I feel like a beginner in comparison!"
After being one of the top pianists in her small college, she landed on a big campus where she rubbed elbows with some of the best pianists in the world. Under the relaxed tutelage of Dr. Hinson, however, Melissa blossomed as a pianist far beyond our expectations -- and her own. Dr. Hinson knew just how to bring out the best in each of his students.
What a thrill it was to be there when our daughter gave her final recital. Seeing her on stage in a beautiful red gown, her tiny hands flying over the keys on an ebony grand piano was an emotional high for me. Having taught her from kindergarten through high school and watching her develop into a beautiful young woman ... an accomplished, confident musician ... was a joyful moment!
Melissa met her husband (also a musician) the last year on that campus. They married soon after graduation in 2006. As I write this, we've just experienced another joyful moment with our daughter. She and her husband are the proud parents of a four-day-old son.
He's a handsome little guy with long feet and long fingers. Piano fingers, Melissa teased. Guitar fingers, Luke winked back at her. They named him Ethan, a Biblical name for one of the musician/composers at the temple in Jerusalem.
Who knows ... maybe Ethan will love music as much as his parents do.