I am a piano teacher, writer, public speaker, home-schooling mom, have a daughter with Down syndrome, and I am an unshakable optimist, dedicated to bringing joy and hope into your life through the power and magic of music, and helping you become the pianist and person you want to be.
I am a born and raised German girl, with nothing more than passion, a piano and a dream, I am proud to have created Music Transforms You, an Easy Step-by-Step Online Piano Method, that can be enjoyed even by those with Special Needs and is touching people around the world.
How on earth did I get started in all this?
The church pictured at right is called “Christuskirche.” It is located in Mainz, Germany, where I grew up, and that is where it all started… When I was a little girl, my Dad used to take me to the Christuskirche on Sundays.
My favorite part was listening to the angelic voices of the choir, and the organist who would play a majestic piece at the end of the service.
One Sunday, my Dad had to talk with the minister, and we went into one of the rooms of the church, and there it was: the most beautiful thing I had ever seen: a big black grand piano. I walked up to it in awe and marveled at the old ivory keys as I breathed the dusky fragrance of wood and varnish and touched the smooth keyboard that would become my personal road to enchantment.
From that moment on I decided that I was going to be a pianist and musician.
Shortly after that I started private piano-lessons, and I used to walk to my piano lesson on an old Roman cobblestone road.
Although along the way on my journey in music I encountered many challenges, I never did regret that calling.
Then Tragedy Happened!
When I was pregnant with Christina, I was like any other mom, expecting that perfectly normal, healthy baby. I had dreams and hopes for this child. So the day came when I went to the hospital to deliver my precious child.
After she was born, my pediatrician came in the room, took the baby out for her routine check, and when he came back he said with a sad and somber voice:
”I hate to be the bearer of bad news, but Christina has Down syndrome.” And with those words my world fell off its axis.
I felt like I’d been swallowed up by darkness with no way out, no exit. Fear and sadness took the place of joy and happiness, and all I could do was cry. I cried for five years!
To make matters worse, at the age of five months, Christina had to have open heart surgery, and suddenly my life was invaded by doctors, surgeons, nurses, social workers, therapists, support-groups, and everyday grief knocked me over.
And when I wasn’t crying, I was in front of Google, trying to find the cure for Down syndrome. After all, Google does have the answer for everything, right? (NOT!)
I was determined, I was going to be the first one to find the cure for Down Syndrome, I was going to make my baby “normal.” But then we have to ask ourselves, what is “normal?”
Where are we getting our standards from? From family, friends, peers teachers, the media, Hollywood?
I wanted to change Christina because of my own ignorance, because of my belief that only smart and beautiful people are lovable and acceptable.
As the years passed, and healing started to settle in a little, I realized that I had to die to an old part of myself, a part that thought only productive, articulate, smart and beautiful people are deserving of love.
I gave up trying to change Christina, I came to terms that it was impossible to extract that extra chromosome from every cell of her body, to change her entire molecular structure. I finally admitted my helplessness and stopped fighting with God, and accepted that God is sovereign, no matter the situation. I read an Amish Proverb once: “God won’t take you, where his grace can’t keep you.” I began working in ME, and when I started to change ME, my pain and grief over my child born with Down syndrome disappeared.
I learned that life does not receive value according to what we can produce or what academic degrees we have or how beautiful we are, but how much love and compassion we can give, and how much grace we can extend to those who are different from us!
So for many years after my daughter’s birth I struggled to make sense out of my forever-changed life.
I looked at God and asked him:”Now what?” What do you want me to do? I am just a simple person.
But God doesn’t call the equipped, he equips the called, and He gave me an answer. His answer came from Proverbs 31:8.
Speak up for those who cannot speak for themselves; ensure justice for those being crushed.
So I went on a mission, and tried to find ways to help my beautiful daughter, and other families who had a child with Special Needs.
And this brought me to teaching piano to those with Special Needs, and I developed Music Transforms You, my Easy Step-by-Step Online Piano Method.
When Words Fail, Music Speaks
By interweaving beautiful music we can connect our different worlds in the most wonderful and unspeakable way. That’s the magic and mystery of music, because it comes from the heart and speaks to the heart.
Music plays such a vital role in the world around us, and I feel deep gratitude to be part of this process and to be able to appreciate classical music, and to witness the wonders it does in people’s lives, especially in troubled times. Often we feel betrayed by life itself, and fear overwhelms us, but our music will never betray us nor let us down, it will always give back and enrich us.
The need for music is “hardwired” into our fabric; even infants and plants respond to it and understand it. Music sharpens our brains, heightens our sense of awareness, and helps us develop an appreciation for beauty and value.
Classical music enables us to succeed in all their endeavors.
We remain for all our lives sensitive to the power of music, it holds the key to solving seemingly insurmountable challenges and obstacles. In times of difficulty, the arts become more vital to human condition.
Through the arts we honor our past, understand our present and dream our future.
Music Transforms You,