03 Jan Happy 2023! Let’s Make it Rock
by Marisa Torrieri Bloom
While many of my younger and child-free musician friends spent New Year’s Eve raging, playing, or partying, those of us with little ones likely spent it on the couch (if we didn’t fall asleep first!). This year, Covid struck again, and a few of our besties had to shelter in place. Yet still, the fact that we could celebrate another year in the books is nothing short of a miracle, considering all of the craziness going on in the world right now.
This got me to thinking about all of the things I’m grateful for — family and friends who love me, good health, and two amazing kids (and one amazing dog) top the list. I’m also grateful for stuff that I take for granted, like my rock band, my voice (it keeps getting better with age), this blog, and club owners that love us even though it’s sometimes a struggle to draw (because most of our friends with kids are more selective about their outings and babysitter-worthy nights).
Gratitude is the cornerstone of happiness, in my experience. When it comes to my life as a musician and professional writer, it’s easy for me to get down on myself or to think of the things I haven’t accomplished: I haven’t played a show at the Bowery Ballroom in NYC, and my band hasn’t finished its album. I haven’t published my first byline in Rolling Stone.
But I’ve learned the hard way that this kind of thinking is just a recipe for despair.
[SEE RELATED: MAKING THE PARENT BAND WORK]
My headspace shifts when I make a list of everything I HAVE done. I’ve defied the odds and started a rock band after age 35! I have a successful blog with hundreds of subscribers. I interview amazing people every week. And finally, I have new music on Spotify, iTunes, and Bandcamp that my kids love. Last year, I played 14 live shows — the most I’ve played since 2009, in my pre-kid days. So while I haven’t mastered sync licensing or recorded a solo album professionally, I’ve done a heck of a lot.
So my advice to you, rockstar readers, is this: Start your weeks with a gratitude list. Don’t compare yourselves to others, especially other moms and dads who seem to excel at balancing parent life and band life. When my sons were toddlers (at the same time!), I was too exhausted to join a band, or play nightclubs. It’s never too late to set goals, and measure progress slowly but generously.
Rock on, and Happy New Year!
Marisa Torrieri Bloom is the editor and founder of Rockmommy.