Sunday, December 11, 2011


Terese belongs to a terrific choir. Actually, she belongs to several, but one is particularly amazing. It's a large audition-only but volunteer choir that focuses on classical vocal and orchestral music.

Pre-Sjogren's dryness and fatigue, I used to sing right next to her in the alto section. We used to have a grand old time. Although our repertoire used to vary each season, we used to begin each year with Handel's Messiah - all three hours of it. And I loved each and every minute. They still begin each season with this gem.

For someone who loves to sing, there is no better experience than to be standing on risers, in the midst of a very large choir consisting of very talented individuals, (I have no idea how I managed to be in there...) facing a live orchestra and a standing-room-only venue singing the Messiah.

Sometimes, surrounded by by the power of that many voices and instruments creating such spectacular music, it was difficult to stifle my emotions and sing past the tears of joy.


A zillion years ago, we made a recording. I have put together a soundtrack of our rendition of the Hallelujah Chorus. If you listen carefully, you can hear Terese and I belting out those alto parts. (Yes. Among the forty-some other altos. Sure.)

Now when I listen, instead of tears of joy, I blink back tears of regret that I didn't appreciate those times more.

I miss some of my pre-Sjogren's much.


Amy Junod said...

Sounds awesome! Thanks for sharing.

Jenny P said...

I think you did - and do - appreciate those times as much as you could. Knowing you, I simply do not believe you would go up those risers with your music and not have been entirely in the moment, which is half of "appreciating" something. The other half is thinking of those times, those places and experiences, and remembering everything they meant to you.

Right now I'm also facing the loss of my (less-than-amazing) singing ability, and it sucks. I understand how you feel. You can always sing for me:) Though, I just might join in and who needs

annie said...

I think most days are lived routinely, not thinking about the illness, but just getting through the day. The difficult days are when we realize all we don't have/can't do.... situations that make accepting this illness very stressful and unforgiving.

Laura said...

I am sorry you no longer can sing with them - but so glad you shared the music. Gorgeous!

It brings back memories for me as well. At the best of my singing ability I do not believe I could have joined an audition-only choir of that quality - but I did sing choir for six years, and while we never did the full Messiah, we always did the Hallelujah chorus.

It is one of the few pieces of music I always found consistently as glorious - or more so - to perform, as to listen to.