The 2010 marching season ended today, just a little after 5:30.
We came in 10th by 3/10th of a point...
the top nine bands go to state finals.
What a breathtakingly heartbreaking moment.
But today, our little band played with it's whole heart. They brought their best selves to the field and left everything there... which is all that can be asked.
They had their game face on.
|With friends beside them, who have been drumline buddies for 5 years, they stepped forth to compete|
|Waiting at the gate.|
|Every hand to a shoulder, so that all are touched, a human chain...|
|a human chain, in prayer, child led prayer before performance.|
A second year band director, 15 months on the job,
giving the kids positive direction.
... not an easy job... hours and hours past what other teachers and coaches work, a 6 day week, every week.
...a moving classroom, teaching life lessons as well as music.
Not asking the kids for anything that he's not giving himself.
To guide a child in learning to handle disappointment, and hold their head up in the face of it, as life is surely full of such, is as important a lesson as learning how to win, maybe more important. They learn it by example, and I'm pleased with and grateful for the example.
The veteran assistant, who can fix anything...
...if we could only count the instruments that he's repaired, or the nights he's driven the bus.
For most of these kids, certainly for my three, this is the man who first put an instrument in their hands...
...and who patiently taught them their first screeching notes.
There are other instructors, all of whom are college students who give of themselves and their time.
Thanks to Ryan, T. J. and to Brittany, and a special thanks to Carmen, the percussion instructor
who took a rowdy crew and gave them direction.
It goes without saying that parents were here and helped. That is the job of parents, all parents.
For those parents who do more than your share, I promise that you'll not miss the moments that are special
and you'll be glad you did extra when the day is done.
I do not regret the time that I've spent since the first child entered band during her 6th grade year.
I do not regret the purchase of two flutes, a piccolo, a trumpet and more drums than is reasonable.
I did not think that I'd shed tears... I'm tough as a parent and expect my kids to proceed to the next thing.
But I did, indeed, turn around on the bus, after leaving the competition and look into their faces
and realize that will be the last time and tears did fall.
Thank you to the children, who sang a really rousing rendition of "Lean on me" at the very top of their lungs and to David, who pointed out that there was yet concert festival, jazz band and winter percussion to go.