Now is the time


When we got a piano, my grandfather asked me when I would start taking lessons.

“I’m not,” I told him.

“Oh, you are playing around on it then?” he asked.

“No. We got it for the kids.”

“And you aren’t learning to play?”

Though I have always wanted to learn to play, it just felt like an insurmountable thing to learn. We had one young son and were hoping for another. I had left my job and was struggling with forming a new identity. (“Keeping house” is not my forte.) I didn’t feel like I had the time for the luxury of piano lessons.

However, my grandfather was truly puzzled by why I wouldn’t take advantage of an opportunity, in my own home, to learn something new.


As a child, I was deathly afraid of the water and, despite sporadic lessons, didn’t learn to swim. When I was older, there was never a good time to learn to swim – too embarrassing to let anyone know, too inconvenient to get to lessons, etc.

I spent a lot of energy avoiding water-based activities. For example, I wanted to take a spring break trip to Florida with my friends, but panicked each time someone suggested renting a boat, going water skiing, or doing any water-based activity. Could I fake my way through? Or should I feign disinterest, stay back and read a book? When I started dating my husband, he loved going to Bermuda. When he invited me along, of course I jumped at the opportunity. We went boating and snorkeling and played in the waves, though I was often nervous that I would have some swimming mishap or die faking it.

In my mid-thirties, it was time, not only to conquer my fear, but also to live up to this glamorous image I held of myself possibly jumping off a boat into a lake, with the sun shining in the background…When I could finally swim comfortably, my husband booked a trip to Anguilla for us and some friends.

When we left for Anguilla, I was three months pregnant with twins. But the pregnancy was troubled from the start and, shortly after we arrived on the island, I miscarried. We called my doctor, who said, “Well, in case you didn’t actually miscarry, stay away from alcohol. And if you did miscarry, you shouldn’t have sex or go in the water because you could get an infection.”

I wondered what he does for fun on vacation. But mostly, I couldn’t believe I finally learned to swim and was surrounded by water, but I couldn’t go in!

That was over a decade ago. Now I am dealing with tumors and one of them seems to have ripped open my belly button. With an open wound that is taking its time to heal, I again cannot go into the water for fear of infection. I watch from the sidelines and take photos while the kids play in the ocean and the pool. Or I hang back and read a book or simply enjoy the sunshine.

I’m not complaining. I know that I am lucky to be enjoying some lovely weather and beautiful surroundings with my family. I am lucky to be able to travel at all. But I also finally realize that maybe I should take advantage of the opportunities in front of me at the time rather than assume they will always be available. Because the thing that I am not able to do inevitably becomes the thing I most want to do.

I continue to busy with the kids, chemo, energetic healing, writing, cooking, keeping the house somewhat organized (always the house), but maybe it is time for piano lessons?


18 thoughts on “Now is the time

  1. Marie – you may not need piano lessons! I just saw a 60 minutes on Joey Alexander — he’s 12 years old and self taught! Wynton Marsalis saw a recording of Joey (he’s from Bali) and brought him to NYC. Joey (again … 12 years old) says – he really likes the energy in NY!

    For me watching/listening to him is like witnessing a real-life miracle 🙂

    Blessings Marie!

    From: Adventures in Spiritual Living <> Reply-To: Adventures in Spiritual Living <> Date: Sunday, January 3, 2016 at 8:13 PM To: InterVest <> Subject: [New post] Now is the time

    Marie Colantoni Pechet posted: ” When we got a piano, my grandfather asked me when I would start taking lessons. “I’m not,” I told him. “Oh, you are playing around on it then?” he asked. “No. We got it for the kids.” “And you aren’t learning to play?” Though I have always wanted t”

  2. If it’s something you’ve always wanted to do, do it! You’re allowed to quit if you decide you don’t enjoy it. You’re allowed to change teachers. You’re allowed to simply sit at the keys and play. Have fun.

  3. Hi! I’m a friend of a friend of yours, and she told me about your blog when I started my own blog (I h8 cansah) about my journey with cancer as a mother of two! I have been following you for about six months, and I just wanted to tell you that I really like your writing, and thank you for sharing both your difficult experiences and your victories in such a beautiful, eloquent manner. Today,
    I need to say: GO FOR IT! Do the piano lessons! The timing is perfect. You will be so happy you tried.
    That is awesome that you learned how to swim after all those years of trepidation. You are an inspiration!

  4. Such good words of wisdom. I’ve often let fear keep me from taking advantage of opportunities to do something new but having my kids has helped a lot. There’s nothing like a kid saying, “Now! Let’s go! Pleeeeeeeease!” to get me to take the leap. Happy New Year Marie! xxoo

  5. Marie, I’d be happy to come over anytime and show you some ways to “play” piano (from the Judy comment–love that!). You can be sort of mathematical in your approach and/or you can doodle at it. And both ways are fun!
    Thanks, as always, for opening up to share a valuable reminder with all of us. xox

  6. Yes, maybe it is time for those piano lessons! Your grandfather would love that!…..And it’s great you did learn to swim as an adult. You are inspiring in so many ways, Marie! xo

  7. This entry is great Marie! A good reminder to all of us to keep embracing challenges because that’s what real growth is. The alternative is way too boring🙃😝❗️

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s