Music: Expression or Perfection?

Humans use art to express various emotions and ideas. This art takes on many forms, but these emotions are shown most vividly in the beauty of music. Throughout history humans have worked to perfect the creation and performance of music but, as in life, this quest to perfection can cause a detriment the original point, which is to express emotion.   In some cases music has just become another chore in our lives and a target for criticism.
When I was young, before I had received any training in music whatsoever, I would sing a solo at my school concerts. These were times of great pride and happiness for me. Even at such a young age I had the greatest connection with the music, and would simply get lost in the moment and I loved to stay late after the concerts and hear the praise from the teachers and parents. Though I remembered little of my performances, afterword I felt as though those were the moments that I was truly myself.
Since those days at my small Catholic grammar school, I have attended voice lessons every week, and am in several choirs. I have learned a lot about music and its complexity. When I get a new song I find that I have a hard time learning the rhythm, so I practice using strange sounding syllables until I know the placement of every eighth note and rest. And then I delve into learning the pitches and find that the time I spent learning the rhythm was fruitless.   Eventually I start to sing the actual song mostly using solfege syllables such as do, re, and mi, and continue this for much of the learning process. Learning the words comes later depending on the language of the piece and if the song is in another language the translation of the text is the last thing I learn. In those days at my grammar school this process would seem so foreign and difficult to me, but now I couldn’t learn any other way. It is how I do justice to the music and is how I “create perfection”. But by whose standards is this “perfect”?   How can I restrict something so...