But it's all right that that my kitchen is a mess. I can float above it today. Because the recital went well.
The thing is, the recitals always go well. Even with what I call the "mini-tangles" that performers sometimes have to deal with, more commonly known as "messing up".
But, as I always tell my students, a piece beautifully performed as a whole isn't spoiled by a missed note or two. And it's true.
And, as I also tell my students, even if they should get lost at sea in the middle of the piece I won't let them drown, I'll be right over to rescue them and get their piece back on course to the finish. But in truth that seldom happens. If a performer is well-practiced, they generally know how to recover on their own.
And, ultimately, ours is a friendly audience, there to support all the young (and some not-so-young ...I have 4 adult students) performers. I always tell my students that even you hit every note of your piece wrong just smile and take a nice bow to thank your audience for listening, and all will be well.
I also often remind a nervous student of what will happen if they mess up their piece during the recital: nothing. Absolutely nothing. I tell them that if a brain surgeon messes up doing an operation then that might not be so good, but if a piano student messes up...eh.
And all the while that I go about dispensing calm among my students, the night of the recital I myself am a basket of nerves. I'm sweating bullets. My brain tells me, just as I tell everyone else, that everything will be fine. But there's this pointy little rogue goblin zipping around and mixing things up in my stomach and making me all nervous; but not nervous about my students; nervous about myself. Nervous about getting up on that stage myself and slugging through my own piece.
All the advice I give my students doesn't work when I try to give it to myself. I can't seem to shake the notion that the world will end if I hit a wrong note. Or at least that all my students will leave in disgust and go seek out a new teacher.
And yet, nobody ever does. Even when I've hit wrong notes during my piece, which I often have.
Quite the contrary, after all the performing is finished and we're all sitting together feasting, the mood is celebratory, congratulatory, and mostly, relieved.
All wrong notes are forgotten. Even mine. As I always tell myself, I need to remember this for next time.