Our Stories: L.H.’s nerves.

L.H. wrote:

If it weren’t for nerves I would probably have done something completely different with my life.  Maybe that is a positive as I have loved what I now do but I adored orchestral music and playing the flute.  That was dream plan one.  But —- my hands shook when under pressure.  If I got a grip on my hands, my knees shook.  Sometimes if I had my mother in the front row making constant eye contact I could get through but you can’t do that all your life.

I could usually start out feeling fine.  Then after about 7 to 10 minutes it would come over me like a wave. It seemed to happen automatically even when I felt really confident.  It was as if my body acted without instructions from my brain.

As a school girl I used to regularly feel panicky and like fainting in our school chapel.  Others had the same problem.  Not sure if that is related.

Over the years I developed ways of getting through and after about age 60 it seems to have disappeared.  Doubt an orchestra would take me now!

I do hope younger performers find a way round their nerves so they can follow a career in performing if they want to!

-L. H.