Monday, January 18, 2021 - Aging and COVID

I wanted to write about how the COVID pandemic is affecting me individually as it relates to aging. My whole career I have been the person who continuously just goes. I have always felt the pressure of what’s next and what’s on my calendar and to-do list. My schedule has been booked for every day for a long time, and I never turn down a gig or an opportunity if I can fit it in. That all changed when COVID came just as I know it did for many of my friends - probably you too. I tried to keep really busy finding new ways to do my job for quite a while - going online as much as I could, and trying to stay connected. But as the months have gone by I’ve realized that things will not be the same when the virus is gone. This year that has been lost has changed my perspective and my approach to the rest of my life. My friend Eileen who is a minister and spiritual teacher has also been teaching a section on growing older, and that has me pondering more than usual as I have been writing song thoughts about the grace and wisdom of age. The older you get the more old age doesn’t seem so old. I’m sure there will come a time when I am reduced physically enough that I’ll need help and will truly feel my age, but for now I am relatively young, and I am at the stage where my experience and life-skills and job-skills have value for the world. I’m settling into a good stage of giving back - seeing where I can help without caring about reciprocal gain. I can wait an extra second for reflection before I jump in, and that makes the helping much more helpful. I can think of others before I think of myself because I am comfortable in who I am and what my purpose is. All these things come with age, and COVID has slowed me down and helped me see this. I’m not quite retired, but my thought is slipping towards it. I’ll always make music, and I love the community that has gathered around me - especially online, but I can see that the driven time of trying to accumulate things and money is passing for me. That’s a good thing. It’s funny how time makes that much more apparent. I’m rambling, but the virus has helped make things clearer in many ways at my age, and I’m thankful for that. How about you? Has it changed your perspective on aging? 

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What have I been up to? 

My Thursday show online doing Jimmy Buffett songs was great fun! He puts so much energy and spirit in his songs, and it was a real pleasure to share that energy with folks. If you missed it you can catch it on my website or on Facebook - tommunch.com/online-concerts and facebook.com/tom.munch.  

My Sunday online show was a good one too with a whole new mix of songs including some blues and quite a few ‘70s tunes. Again this online community is a treasure and a blessing.  

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What am I up to this week? 

I need to make at least one recording for my senior facilities, and one of my facilities has been able to lift their lockdown enough to have small groups that I can sing to live online again. I bought a good webcam so I can finally make videos that are easier to record and upload to the cloud as well as stream. That will help.  

My Thursday 7-8:30 mountain time theme show this week will feature old cowboy songs. I have a real history with these songs going back to when I studied them in college to sing for historical events at museums and at Philmont. I have been told by ranchers that I do them faithfully, and like a good piece of historical fiction there is real value in plugging into someone’s life in another time and place that helps us understand our own lives better. On top of that there are the fun movie-cowboy songs that romanticized the cowboy life, and I’ll do a few of those too. Come on out! 

My Sunday show 7-8:30 will be the favorites and requests that I so enjoy playing for folks. It’s been a lot of work learning so many new-to-me songs, but it’s a pleasure connecting with people over a favorite song. I get to see a piece of their life and understand how a song has been a part of them. Please tune in if you can, and send me any requests you’d like me to learn for future weeks. 

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That’s it for this week. I hope you are well and relatively happy. We are all learning a lesson in patience and grief as the pandemic stretches on. Someday we will all sit together and reminisce and be closer for it - although it seems so far off now. 

Best always, 

Tom 

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Details this week: 

Who:  Tom Munch  
What:  playing and singing an online concert of cowboy songs 
Where:  facebook.com/tom.munch and tommunch.com/online-concerts   
When:  Thursday, January 21, 7-8:30 pm mountain time  

Who:  Tom Munch  
What:  playing and singing an online concert of favorites and requests  
Where:  facebook.com/tom.munch and tommunch.com/online-concerts   
When:  Sunday, January 24, 7-8:30 pm mountain time 

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