Midori – Balancing School and Practicing
Heather: And so with 5 - 6 hour of practicing a day, how did you balance that with homework and also being a kid?
Midori: I went to a regular school when I was growing up and I didn’t think the option of homeschool. I was not widely available at the time. I always liked having fun at school and hanging out with friends, and I particularly liked some classes, some subjects. I never liked math but I was very good at it. But I loved English. And I always loved to read. So, in English class or Language Arts, it was always fun to read and interpret, and sometimes to even write your own story. I didn’t do so well in the sciences but I loved history. I basically flunked...absolutely flunked in gym. It was very regular to go to school, a very normal part of my life when I was growing up. And once I got home I would practice.
I think maybe one other thing that may be a little bit different from some of the other kids is that when I was 10, my mother and I came to live in the US. At that time I didn’t speak a word of English. The first couple of years, I had trouble adjusting with the language and I remember how difficult it was, what challenges that I had. I think within two years I was doing okay in school. I wasn’t fluent by any means but I felt comfortable enough to really express everything in English and to have a conversation, and...also to be a little silly from time to time.
And in those years when I was actually trying to come to terms with the new language, I wasn’t able to practice as much. Simply because I was tired. When you’re surrounded by a language that you’re not so used to and trying to understand it, and trying to communicate with it, it takes a lot of energy. But then as I became more comfortable and gained more confidence with the language and with the school work, I was back to practicing and having fun with it and making more friends.