Rééducation – long, slow haul

It’s over seven months since my shoulder replacement. By now I should be able to do things like reach up to pick a packet off the mshelf, put my hands behind my back, or pull open thse freezer door (which is a bit of a stickler). Well, I can’t.

But about two weeks ago I suddenly realised there had been a slight amelioration. I noticed that I can
(usually) open a door with my right arm. I can hold a jug of water without spilling it and when driving I can now place my hands in the preferred 10 to 2 position rather than 10 to 6 (ie I can now lift my right hand up).

The next challenge : to play music again

A couple of times I have got my cello out of its case and attempted to play. But it was a thoroughly depressing experience. I tried again. I still couldn’t move the bow to play a long note on the A or D strings.

Nevertheless, I decided to rejoin the Ecole de Musique and play in their two concerts- on the 21 June (part of the Fete de la Musique) and next Wednesday (the end of term concert.

It was lovely being greeted with such warmth and friendliness by everyone, especially my fellow cellists (all adult) and my teacher, Anne. They all spoil me, carrying my cello up the difficult stairs, and rushing to put up my stand and find me a chair.

Ever optimistic that my arm is going to improve, Anne has given me two pieces to work on over the summer, one of which, Saint Saen’s Swan, I remember well from listening to pupils play it at Jude’s music school in Edinburgh.

I warned my cello friends that I would be playing mainly pizzicato during the concert. I was hoping to sit at tghe back, mais non, my fellow cellists insisted I took my usually place as leader, at the front.

The concert went reasonably well, though I blew the last piece by starting off at twice the speed of the others (misinterpreting the conductor’s beat).

Let’s hope I deserve it better on Wednesday. Bad sign, the arm is suddenly very painful, I don’t know what I did. I hope some painkillers and doing nothing tomorrow will prepare me for tomorrow’s rehearsal.

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