Ring out the old, ring in the new

Stephen McHugh
This post was last updated on
August 17, 2022
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Last night, I attended a Christmas concert, and the phrase that I heard there which stands out is in the title of this post.

As one year nears its end, it can be a time to reflect on what has gone on during it, including any important and significant events. We should take time to think about how to change things for the better in the next and beyond.

In recent weeks, my number of Twitter followers exceeded 100. A big thank you to all who have chosen to show an interest in my autistic journey, and how to manage to live with it. It’s great to have plenty of voices out there to raise awareness of autism in the community. The more we can get, the better, and, for me, we can take more important steps to make the world a less intimidating, but more welcoming and supportive place for those of us with autism.

One issue that has been mentioned is that education is not adequate enough for the needs of autistic children. Here is a link to a page on the National Autistic Website, where people can sign a petition to get The Government to work on this for the benefit of autistic children where education is concerned, helping them towards prosperous futures. 

Last night was also an important reminder that I have a musical talent in the form of piano playing. I have a particular interest in musical pieces by Beethoven and Chopin. This is something I plan to do more of during the remainder of the year and beyond. 

There have been times when I’ve taken time away from the piano to take up and develop other interests, like computers and foreign languages. But more importantly, one thing that has been evident is that my musical talent hasn’t abandoned me whenever I’ve got back to it. I found that I can pick it up again relatively quickly and easily. You should be able to do likewise if you plan to go back doing something you’re talented at but may not have done for some time.

The Christmas concert had a different conductor to the one who’d normally be doing it. The person who’d normally be doing it couldn’t attend and happened to live next door to me some decades ago. Around the time they had music students renting rooms, and one of them, a young woman, who was very nice to me, took a keen interest in my music. Sometimes, she invited me round to show her what I could do on the piano. 

Nowadays, whenever I play the piano, it reminds me of the fond memories I have of her, whilst acting as a motivator to try and improve my piano skills. It can also feel like she is still here at times, guiding me.

What do you all plan to do differently for the benefit of yourselves and others?


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