Tell us about the harshest, most difficult to hear — but accurate — criticism you’e ever gotten. Does it still apply?
The harshest yet most accurate criticism I ever got was from my friend’s brother.
I was in my friend’s living room and we were plunking on the piano singing our hearts out. I think we were singing some kind of Christian hymn of all things. We were only about 6 or 8 years old singing loud and proud with our young voices. It was fun to express ourselves in song.
Then my fun ended and my heart sank. My friend’s brother came in and looked me right in the eye and said that my singing was beyond atrocious and that I should never be allowed to sing again.
And I’m sure my singing was atrocious. But the words hurt. They were such unnecessary words to say to a young kid. From then on, I felt fear whenever I came near any activity that involved singing. Now I lip-synch most songs, whether in a church or just singing Happy Birthday at home to a loved one.
Who knows, maybe I could have practiced and become a slightly better singer. But probably not.
The ironic thing about this story is that her brother grew up to became a Christian minister. I thought minister-type of people should be kinder. At the very least he should have been happy someone was singing loud in a Christian vein no matter how good or bad the voice was.
My husband has said for years that he would rather that I have an affair than sing around him. Now that doesn’t hurt me at all. I just laugh at his humor and praise his ear for good music.