Normally I write about muscles, relieving pain, or something else that is related to what I teach, but today is different. On Sunday night (March 30th) I watched 60 Minutes on TV and saw Wynton Marsalis interview the most inspiring man who proves we can do anything we set our minds to do. We have no excuse not to accomplish our goals, he proved “if he can do it, so can we.”
Marcus lost his sight when he was only five years old. Growing up “in the hood – across the tracks from downtown” in Jacksonville, FL, his mother had gone blind in the 7th grade. Marcus’s father was a hard-working man who supported his family as best as he could, but while money was scarce, there was great love and encouragement in the family. The greatest gift his parents gave him was the confidence to follow his dreams. His dream was to play the piano.
He played on any piano he could find, and his parents finally scrapped together enough money to buy Marcus his own piano so he could play at home. At first he taught himself how to play by listening to the radio and then picking out the notes on the piano his parents bought for him.
The interview shows how education, excellent mentors, and sheer determination has brought Marcus Roberts to be recognized as a Virtuoso, a man that Wynton Marsalis recognizes as one of the greatest piano players ever, “the genius of the modern piano.”
Think of all this man has overcome to become a master jazz player: born in the South during a time of racial unrest, poor, and blind by the time he was five. Marcus had all the reasons in the world to never succeed, but he not only DID succeed, he is a leader in his field.
I had to ask myself, what’s keeping me back from fulfilling all of my dreams? Maybe you’ll ask yourself the same question. I know that watching this interview, and all of my thoughts since I turned off the TV, has inspired me to move forward with more determination.
Wishing you well,
(Credit for Picture of Marcus Roberts:http://tinyurl.com/kcyv46z