My fingers were throbbing, sweat was profuse along my body, I was sitting up straight with instructed posture and the hand-holding-ball gesture on the wooden black-and-whites.
I practised the scales, broken chords, cadence in a mechanical fashion, just to get my fingers fit for what I was about to play. F major, tun.tun.tung… Staccato, tuk. tuk. tuk… B flat major… Continuing the whole array of possible major and minor keys. Scales first, then arpeggios, broken chords to cap off the warm-up. Clocking in an hour or so.
Not good enough, not fast enough. That was what I told myself after almost every session. It sounded disheartening, but it was the only push to keep me going, a reverse psychology. I adjusted myself, tilting my head above, letting the blood to circulate for a brief repose.
Deftly, my fingers sprang into life, the muscles in my fingers to be specific. I focused, my ears captured the notes aptly, my eyes were scanning through the notes on the pages and remembering the nicks and turns needed for particular parts. The atmosphere around me were muted out, it was just me and the piano.
Moonlight, how bea… Muffled, what I could hear was voided. Eventually, it was felt as if I was caught in a perennial loop of dread of practice, I was not enjoying nor listening to the process anymore. Everything was just micromanaging of my strength of my fingers and sweating. The feel of my fingers knocking against the piano was overwhelming, I was again swallowed by not being able to hear.
I was drowning, suffocating in the vicinity of nothingness, bare banging, and deafness. Running through the third movement three times without stopping, getting all the notes right in one fell swoop, but it was only pure exercising of my fingers, I still could not hear anything even if I tried.
Sunk. My senses were diminished, waning away into a series of banging and hitting on the wooden keys. A pat was sent to my back, a prominent presence appeared behind me. I dared not to fixate my eyes around, I kept playing. The pat materialised into something comforting, unclogging me from inside out.
I stopped, lifted up my hands into my face, staring at it blankly as they throbbed like a beating heart. Placing my hands on my chest, I felt revamped anew with a different perspective. Clamping my hands together, redirecting my focus into merging with the piano, I heard the chime of their hearts.