Alone, Alone. We are not alone.

There may be the feeling of isolation, of a vastness far greater than one could comprehend. Logically we know we aren’t alone in this, but what does logic know about the workings of the heart?

– The Nashville Wife

I believe in the world as it is, this can apply to so many.

+ The stay-at-home-mom
+ The single mom
+ The musician that can’t seem to catch a break
+ The man and woman who broke up and he can’t do this again
+ The student who lost his way and can’t find a worthy path.
+ The woman whose disability creates a vast open space of nothing.
+ The artist who has it all but nothing at all
+ The man who has everything but feels empty
+ The author who writes for no one.

You may not be that author, that mom, the student or the woman. But when have you ever not felt isolated? Empty. Lonely. Unworthy. Ignored. Lost. Inadequate. We are not alone in this. We all have our own burdens to carry but we are not alone in the journey. Whatever the journey, we are not alone.

Logically, we know that. But what does logic know?

SPOTLIGHT: Patch Foundry

Spotlight time!

Today’s spotlight?

P A T C H + F O U N D R Y

Boutique music patches crafted in Nashville, TN. 

Okay… I know pretty much every person that reads my blog is NOT a tech person, is probably not a musician (and even if you were you STILL probably would not understand this) but could you PLEASE take 5 seconds and see this website?!

+++

confession…

This is my husband’s website but Im just SO PROUD of him that I really wanted to showcase it. He just released a new product and we’re SO excited.

Back up…

What does he do?

Well he is a patch designer. In layman’s terms, he designs sounds for keyboards + synths that are programable via computer and make incredible sounds on stage, in sessions, production work, etc. Even I don’t fully understand it but that’s about all you need to know. He makes a sound, you can download it and use it on your piece of gear.

He just redesigned his website from the ground up and its spectacular! He has worked on this for months and months and moooonnnths.

So please take a look (CLICK HERE) or if you know someone in the music industry, share it with them! 😉

Thank you, Lovelies! ❤

$ ‘Tis the Season $

First off… no, this is not a blog about spending during the holidays. Haven’t we got enough of those? 😉 

Nah. This is about TAXES! 
(Silently watches as everyone leaves the room)

(Me)

Okay please don’t leave. This is not really about taxes, per se. 

So I’ll make this a short one. As a business owner (my husband started Listening House Studios years ago, online/in-person piano lessons & more) I have to constantly keep up with every receipt, every dollar spent, to get as many write-offs as possible. If I don’t, we’ll be paying Uncle Sam instead of him paying us. Aaaaand who wants that?


So I wanted to share with you…
(me: briefly, I promise)
(also me: Sarah, don’t make promises you can’t keep)
… a couple ways that make this super easy!

Continue reading $ ‘Tis the Season $

Spotlight Blog: “Keep Drama to Yo-Self”

Story #3: Keep Drama To Yo-Self

 

I played a gig in Mississippi a few weeks ago with an amazing cover band called Downtown Band. We showed up to the gig and started unloading as usual when someone realized that the trombone player Eric was gone. We figured he was in the bathroom, and kept setting up.

Continue reading Spotlight Blog: “Keep Drama to Yo-Self”

I know you’ve been dying for my return… (if that doesn’t get ya, I have a coupon!)

Well hey, ya’ll! I have MISSED you. I have missed my blog!

This was a much needed break. Oh man. Thank you for thinking about me everyday like I know you did… 😉 I know, right? *eye roll* Let’s not get carried away here, Sarah. Continue reading I know you’ve been dying for my return… (if that doesn’t get ya, I have a coupon!)

I am in counseling and I am Okay. I am Okay and I am in counseling. There’s no right or wrong in that.

Okay. To jump RIGHT IN…

I have been going to counseling for quite a while now. I had an 8 month break (mostly due to Eric touring) and have recently gone back again. I won’t sugar coat it – it’s hard but it’s so incredibly rewarding, refreshing & it’s a game changer. I’m going to write a future blog post about why I’m going but today? I just wanted to touch on my session… So here goes…

Yesterday I paid someone to make me cry and here is what i learned:

(1) I am okay. Just me. The way I am.

Untitled Design 6.png

Please note: this is not me saying you are HEALTHY just the way you are. But YOU…just you (your personality, your quirks… what makes you “you”)

…You are OKAY! You are not a bad, terrible person.

It is important for us to strive to be the healthiest version of “you” that you can be

(I think if I type “you” one more time, my computer might blow up.)

I would not recommend thinking along the lines of “well, i’m okay. Just me the way I am, like you said” and leave it at that. Like I said, You ARE okay but its not good for anyone to stay where they’re at, especially if you’re not emotionally healthy. With that, however, you don’t want to obsess about constantly being a “better version” of yourself because that can lead to thinking the current you isn’t enough. *sigh* It can get out of hand very quickly. Did that even make sense? Well anyways…

(2) I am my own person. I am not a replica of anyone.

To look this good.

Those of us that are easily swayed, we can turn into other people without ever realizing it. Losing our true self and being none-the-wiser. You are your own person. You have your own personality. You can be like others, parts of your parents and your siblings and relatives…similar to friends… but you are YOU.

If you are a “mini-me” of someone else, that is absolutely fine! Embrace that! But don’t forget that you are not them. You are still you and nothing someone has done or will do can determine who you really are. They certainly cannot determine what you can or cannot do, either.

What am I saying here? If you are just like someone else… this could be a friend or relative… and you see traits in them that you see in yourself that you don’t like.. then remember that you are not a mold. You are not confined to the way that person behaves. You…are….you. Make something of that. Be different. Be healthier. 

(3) I have to stand up for the way I feel.

Untitled Design 8.png

Basically, don’t be a people-pleaser (no matter who you’re trying to please).

Feel your feelings and express them.

Caution:

 

You still have to think everything through. This is definitely me not “giving permission” to react and say “well she told me to express my feelings as I felt them.” Well yes, sure… but try not to react on impulse. 🙂 Trust me.. this is the pot calling the kettle black – believe you me!!!

It’s hard, but try not to lash out emotionally and then say “well you said to feel and express as they are. To not judge them and accept what you feel.” You are correct. Accept your feelings as they are… that you feel “that way” and its okay that you do. However, mull it over before reacting. Think of all the various sides. Think of other perspectives and be sure that what you feel is something that you want to share. And then if and when you’re ready to share? Be confident. THIS is you, the healthy side of you. This is how you feel and no one should judge you for that. No one should make you feel small or like you’re a bother to them because you feel that way. Speak up for yourself but with love and grace to others.

(4) I am allowed to be proud of myself.

Untitled Design 7.pngI am someone who naturally likes who I am and is proud of what I have accomplished in all aspects of life. However I am also very practical. I think in black and white with intense logical conclusions. Sometimes if I learn something and apply it, I think “well, thats just the way it is. You learn something and then you apply it.” But sometimes what I don’t see is how fast I apply it or that maybe its a very hard challenge that most people aren’t successful with. So I should be PROUD. So I am learning to affirm that in myself.

My husband – Eric Barfield – gave me a great example. It’s like how baseball players practice all their life, constantly training. So when they hit a homerun, it’s no surprise that they shrug it off like it’s no big deal, meanwhile we’re in the stands acting like we’re about to go to war, charging into battle like an amazon warrior.

So with that said, I want to say to myself…

Sarah, I am proud that you were able to overcome this life-altering….game changing challenge

(*insert evil grinning emoji* – are you dying to know what that is?!?! I’ll go into it more in another blog… stay tuned!)

(5) I am not a bad person

I am not a bad person.png
Sometimes the way we think of ourselves, the way others make us feel or the doubts we have in our abilities make us feel like we are not good people. Like we’re flawed (and we are) but that it’s all our fault and because we can’t be perfect 24/7… we are bad.

If you’re like me (an 8 on the Enneagram… again, something I’ll go into later) you feel like you can control ANYTHING (Hitler was an 8 lol). When you can’t “buck up” and fix yourself, its very, very hard. You feel like a failure and a bad person.

But. You. Are. Not….

 

So let me just say this: counseling is hard. You face some extremely tough emotions. But it’s far harder to live in a world where you don’t know yourself. You don’t know why you feel the way you do, you don’t know why you can’t change and you don’t know why you’re hurting. Sometimes? You don’t even KNOW you’re hurting. That is just not the way to live this life. If you can afford it, I cannot recommend counseling enough.

You are not weak if you go. You are not pathetic. You are not stupid. You are not worthless…

PS: if you try it and you don’t like it, consider trying another counselor before you give up. Not every counselor fits you! You have to try and find someone who works with you and your personality – someone who GETS you. Don’t quit…

Last & Final (very important) note:

I do not judge you if you do or do not go to counseling.
Do I think it’s wonderful? YES.
Do I think it can make you a healthier version of yourself? YES.
But I know that it can get very expensive (most will help you out and let you pay based on your income). I know that it’s very hard to get to a place where you’re willing to face your demons.

You are loved. You are cared about. With me, you are SAFE.

Have a good day, lovelies.

Why do you stay in prison when the door is so wide open? – Rumi

…The Nashville Mom (part IV):  Advice for SAHMs in a New City

Photo Credit: Tony Mellinger

Welcome back! To those who haven’t been following this series…

I am writing about what it’s like in the world of The Nashville Wife (myself) and what it was like coming here without my own purpose. Along with that came The Nashville Mom. I had to find myself within both titles and I wanted to share my experience. I spoke to many other lovely ladies who have been through the basics of my story but in their own versions.

That is what this series has been about.

Their voices. Our voices. A community of people who share a common thread within our life story, willing to branch out and reach for the lonely or the broken.

These women are wonderful people who have volunteered their time to answer these questions and discuss their life with me. I am so grateful for their willingness to share and I hope this meets someone where they’re at in their story.


Quick Recap

Part III ended with some of the best advice I have ever heard…

STHE NASHVILLE WIFE Support. Embrace. Dream. GRateful. Prepare.upport. Embrace. Dream. Grateful. Prepare

I think I may even print out my own blog graphic, frame it, and remind myself of this every single day. If you’re in a new city for any other reason than for your own purpose, find yourself some support. Embrace your new life. Dream bigger things. Be Grateful for what you have and oh my goodness PREPARE! For what’s ahead, for what’s to come… mentally, physically, financially, you name it. Job well done, ladies.

Beautiful words spoken by beautiful women. It’s time to hear their voices once again.

Question #4

 “If you had one piece of advice to give a new SAHM in a new city, what would it be?”

Here’s what they had to say:

“Find your moms.  Join a moms bible study, book club, mops program, whatever.  Get you some girlfriends STAT.”
– Martyne Palmer

“I’m that mom so I guess what I would say to myself is reach out. Find your community whether that be at a church, a gym etc but you have to put forth an effort. 
– Heather Abbott Burback


“Join Facebook groups, find a school you like, find a good MDO program to give yourself a break at least once a week! ”
– Allison Klein

“Jump all in to your community. Find a moms group and a church. Make all the friends you can, find your tribe, and love them well. 
– Vicki Mason Brown

Jamie Angsten basically combined this question along with the next (and the last) 2 questions of this series. It’s a GREAT summary of advice so I have decided to wait and post it at the end. I will give you a great snippet, though!

Untitled Design 4


I feel like the overall arching theme here is MAKE IT HAPPEN! We have the choice to be miserable or to be happy. This is OUR life and we live it so vastly different than everyone else around us. It can take a long time to find your happiness or for some, it can be a quick turn around. Try not to place big expectations on yourself in that area.

Do your best

My counselor – yes, I am in counseling. The best decision I ever made – said one time before, “You don’t seem to give yourself much grace. I wonder what it would be like if you gave yourself as much grace as you give to others?”

I do wonder. So let’s keep that in mind.

Give grace to others and be gracious to ourselves.

Photo Credit: Tony Mellinger

SaveSaveSaveSave

Spotlight: Footjunkie by Stage Tech Solutions

Happy Saturday!

Today is a spotlight blog! I want to introduce a product that one of my friends has created, that I think is simply brilliant. I love it when someone invents something, whether big or small, and has the guts to build something with it. Bravo to you, Jonathan!

So, What is the Product?

Footjunkie is currently a sustain pedal stabilizer, something that has been needed for quite a long time. Whether you’re at a show and you slide your pedal right off the stage (haha – yeah that’s definitely happened. Can you imagine? Whoops) or you’re working in your studio – laying down tracks, you really don’t need the distraction much less the hassle of endlessly adjusting your pedal. Time is precious for a musician. Uninterrupted creative thought is even more precious. Don’t waste it on something so ridiculous.

It solves a problem that has been a curse of keyboardists since the sustain pedal broke away from the original piano. – Eric Barfield

Below is a video of my husband, Eric Barfield (professional keyboardist & touring musician here in Nashville) giving a review of the pedal stabilizer. You can find the original video, along with a lot of other reviews + info regarding the product, at www.stagetechsolutions.com

 Please check out the product pictures below (click on them for a bigger picture), and give this company a ♥ on Instagram (@stagetechsolutions) & on Facebook (Footjunkie)

PS: I’ve never asked for this before, but if you feel inclined to it, would you be willing to help my friend out by spreading the word? Especially if you’re a musician or know one… Share on FB or Instagram or even my blog post. Whatever works best for you. I know those at Stage Tech Solutions would appreciate it 😉

Thanks, lovelies!

 

 

 

 

…The Nashville Mom (Part III): Dreams & Goals (embrace, prepare)

Before We Start…

This is by far one of my favorites in this series. It’s something I wish I had read when I first got here. So if you are a Nashville Wife or a Nashville Mom – whatever that means to you – please read this one! If you don’t read any others, just don’t miss this one. These ladies have some seriously valuable advice here.

PS: This does NOT just apply to the music industry. If you have moved somewhere new for someone else, this could easily apply to you, too!

Now, let’s begin…

Welcome back! To those who haven’t been following this series…

I am writing about what it’s like in the world of The Nashville Wife (myself) and what it was like coming here without my own purpose. Along with that came The Nashville Mom. I had to find myself within both titles and I wanted to share my experience. I spoke to many other lovely ladies who have been through the basics of my story but in their own versions. 

That is what this series has been about.

Their voices. Our voices. A community of people who share a common thread within our life story, willing to branch out and reach for the lonely or the broken.

These women are wonderful people who have volunteered their time to answer these questions and discuss their life with me. I am so grateful for their willingness to share and I hope this meets someone where they’re at in their story. 


 

Quick Recap

Part II ended with Being Brave and wanting to deal with Adult Issues. Needing our own purpose and space, despite how much we love our kids. Making our loved ones a priority by making sure our needs were being met, so as to not create resentment or jealousy within ourselves.

Beautiful words spoken by beautiful women. It’s time to hear their voices once again.

 

Question #3

“If you had one piece of advice for someone moving to Nashville because their spouse is a musician, what would it be?”

[Spouse could also be anyone
with whom you move for]

Here’s what they had to say:

“SUPPORT.  Sometimes it feels like they get to “go out” and have all the fun, but it’s their job- and they can only do it well as long as you have their back.  Encourage them to go out.  See them play as often as you can.  Ask about gigs, auditions, band mates, etc.  Just like you would a day job.  They’ll be more successful and love you more for it.” – Martyne Palmer

“Embrace it. Moving comes with new adventure and even though there might be some hard times it can be really empowering as well. Starting over in a new place can be refreshing. ” – Heather Abbott Burback


“Make sure you’re also pursuing something important to you because a relationship isn’t always about one person’s big dreams & goals. We have dreams and goals, too. ” – Allison Klein

“Enjoy the perks! Gratefulness creates immense patience.”

My follow up question: Would you be willing to elaborate? Such as what perks are you referring to? I love what you said, Gratefulness creates immense patience. I feel like this comes from something learned. I’d love more elaboration on it if you don’t mind? I know I’m asking a lot of questions 

Bob Goff says that gratefulness creates immense patience. 😉

 I guess it just means that the more you think about how grateful you are for the things you have, the more patient you are [when] those things frustrate you. By perks, I mean all of the fun stuff! We get cool tickets to concerts, events, and dinners. We get to rub shoulders with some pretty cool people and we get to have a lot of date nights! We have so much fun together when my husband is in town and we miss each other like crazy when he’s traveling! It works for us.” – Vicki Mason Brown

“My one piece of advice would be to save money.  We had moved here and had originally saved a good amount of money but as we were both unemployed for a couple months and moving into a new home it was more expensive they we originally intended.  However, once we both started working it evened back out but it was something we were not expecting as we were always so stable financially and neither of us wanted to rush into a job we were unhappy with. It all worked out but it does take time to get working, settled in a new home and making new friends.”  – Jamie Angsten

There hasn’t been a question answered yet that has THIS much diversity in the responses. I. Am. LOVING. this one! I feel like each one could potentially be it’s own blog post! I’ll say this, as I was reading their responses, it reminded me a lot of what I wrote about in The Nashville Wife (or Husband). I truly wish I had seen their responses first! (It sure would’ve been nice to write a blog based on what I learned through them verses what I learned through experience haha!)


So what have we learned from this? Some key points that, I think, is the best way to end this blog. So many little words speak in such a loud volume… theres no need to fill this space with more sound.

 

THE NASHVILLE WIFE Support. Embrace. Dream. GRateful. Prepare.

 

We have dreams & goals, too.

Allison Klein