The right change at the right time

Susan Tesch, MS, LMFT | Psychotherapy & Counseling

Susan Tesch, MS, LMFT | Psychotherapy & Counseling

Turning Points

I spend quite a bit of time working on songwriting. I did this early in adulthood, but stopped for a few decades and have returned to it in a more feverish way. Though I don't have delusions, I joke a lot that it's going to lead to something BIG and grand during my "empty nest" years. Music feels endlessly interesting and like it will never grow tiresome. Except when it does. Lately, it's been striking me that it's exhausting to always be working on song lyrics in my head, or pieces of a melody. (It seems the worse the song, the more I fuss and obsess over it, trying desperately to make it good.) I feel like I'm always pregnant with some new song I'm trying to give birth to and it requires a kind of preoccupation that is wearing on me as I write. Meanwhile, a young person I know from community college where I took some music classes just invited me to like his band's Facebook page. As I did so, I listened to several of their songs, and acknowledged again to myself that my songs belong to a different era--the singer-songwriter era--where songs served a different purpose from what they do now. Do we really need more songs like the ones from the 1960-70s? I'm not so sure. So now what? I'm tired. I'm middle-aged. My generation is dying off, and these are probably the people who would most relate to my songs. So...it's time to regroup. I need to change something about what I'm doing and how I'm doing it so that I get more enjoyment out of it, but so that it still feels important somehow. I'm at a turning point. 

I always appreciate the difficulty of a client at a turning point. Sometimes a change in life circumstances creates the turning point, even to the point of crisis. But often I've noticed that when somebody idealizes someone or something, such as I've idealized songwriting, and the idealization starts to fade, it creates a meaning vacuum. That's where I am. If I can stand it long enough, I'll find a new approach. But, as Ringo Starr sang (so satisfyingly!), "It Don't Come Easy."