After Illness, fear of return

Due to physical injury I had been unable to play the clarinet for
about three months. Before this I had reached a level of ability
of which I was satisfied however since my recovery about a month
ago I have been afraid to start playing again. My fear is that I
won’t be able to play as well as before. I know this is irrational
as my injury did not affect anything directly related to playing
and that once I pick up the instrument I’ll soon be improving upon
where I’d reached before, but the fear remains. My question is,
have you heard of this before and if so is it common? Kind

PS. As an aside I preferred the previous format of your web site.
The new format has too much information on a single page and it is
harder to navigate. Before I could look down the first page and
maybe see something of interest that I hadn’t considered as it s
now things are hidden.

Hi Chris

Thanks for your question.

I am not inexperienced with the problem or the fear you have in
returning to the instrument. My particular ailment was directly
connected to playing the instrument: it was unstable angina, very
painful and it resulted in an angioplasty, which I think was
successful, however I experienced so much discomfort after I felt
frequently as if the baloon had collapsed. I was terrified, but
the were further complications for I had several chamber music
engegements following soon after I was released from the hospital.

Nobody, no doctor, nurse, nore technician could tell me if playing
the clarinet would damage my procedure. I was also conducting the
orchestra at the time. What I did was what I had to do: I went on
a strict, very strict diet, eating no fats nor sweets for over two
solid years. And I exercised on my bike for 60 minutes each
morning and 40 minutes each evening for about three years. I also
became Chair of the Music Department at the time, accepting the
appointment only if the university would place an exercise bike in
my office, which they did. I will tell you, fear overcomes all
things, and music became the most important thing in my life. So,
although I seem to have dominated your question, perhaps you can
take some solace in the fact that all of use are tremendously
resouceful, you yourself, especially so.

By the way I agree with your comments on the site’s format, but
have yet to change it very much, for the work entailed is

Thank you for your question.

Best, sherman friedland

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