In chapter 10 of Rising Above Hallie is learning how the basics of learning her scales during a piano lesson is just like practicing love to help her brother overcome his anger. Love concurs all, but it is not just an emotion, it is a choice.
Chapter 10 “Rising Above”
While the two sat on the bench, Charisma placed a music book in front of Hallie. On the cover was an old 1950s drawing of Jack and Jill skipping up a hill.
Sighing, Hallie muttered, “You’ve gotta be kidding me.”
Charisma smirked and gave her a sideways glance. “I take it you think this is too juvenile?”
Hallie bit her top lip and furrowed her brow in frustration. “Well, yeah. I’m fifteen and I’m way beyond Jack and Jill.”
“Other students usually say the same thing. They have high hopes of all the beautiful classical pieces or fast-paced jazz music that they envision themselves playing, but after a few months they get tired of practicing all the basics and just give up. Don’t get me wrong, vision is great, and if you persistently practice, the vision will become a reality.”
Charisma opened the book to the notes on the scale and showed Hallie where each note was on the piano. Next she played the whole scale back and forth on the keys like fluid pouring in and out of glasses. “Now you try it.”
Hallie’s fingers tromped across the ivory, far from tickling them.
“Again.” Charisma had Hallie repeat the scale until her fingers began to move naturally up and down the keys.
“There.” After what seemed like hours, Charisma was finally satisfied. “I want you to practice these basics every day, and along with that, I want you to practice life’s basics every day as well—which is to love. Practice loving your brother, Collin, unconditionally throughout the day. This is the only way you will be able to find him again. All the anger in the world is no match for love.”
Charisma placed a fragile arm around Hallie’s crunched-over shoulders until Hallie looked straight into her eyes. “This love can also melt away fear and brokenness.” Her teacher placed her hands back onto the keys in a demonstration. “At first it will probably feel clumsy and awkward, in the same way learning the scales felt to you. But the more you practice, the more automatic love will become.”