Spent some time doing some reflecting and self-evaluating lately. That time was focused on my “word for the year” which is the word “alignment”. It has been my goal this year to focus in, with laser-like intensity, on what it is I am most passionate about. Once I was clear on my focus, it became obvious where I should – and should not – be spending my time. And it has becoming INCREASINGLY clear that some people do not get to have access to that time or that passion. This doesn’t mean I won’t interact with them in my particular area(s) of passion. I’m just going to keep a healthy distance between us so that my purpose stays clear and clearly mine. Some people, sadly, cannot find it in themselves to support others or let them shine if it means that they must step to the side for a moment. Others will scream their goodwill in your direction and do everything they can to help you achieve your dreams, even if it means they are unseen when you reach the mountaintop.
That second group? That is your tribe. Those people who aren’t threatened by your achievements or success because they know you will be there for them when it’s their turn.
So to those that are my tribe – I hope you know who you are! And thank you for the support, the positive words, and the encouragement.
Lots on my mind lately but no way to eloquently express any of it.
Seeking a change in circumstances but not finding any answers . . .
Just going to leave this here.
Tell me teenagers are lazy and I’ll point to the FDSH band kids who have completed two days of band camp, putting 14 pages of their drill on the field and working hard to build strong marching technique. Or maybe I’ll acknowledge the cheer squads from FDSH that performed really well-done routines at cheer camp.
Tell me teenagers don’t care about the quality of their work and I will ask you to listen to the amazing sound of the band which has been playing together for a total of a couple of days. They give me chills already and the season has barely begun. Or, again, the cheerleaders who worked hard to be in sync with each other so their routines were tight and the stunts flew.
Tell me teenagers have attitude and won’t work and I’ll start listing for you the names of band kids who have reviewed the drill and music without uttering one word of complaint.
Tell me that teenagers aren’t responsible and I’ll point to a number of section leaders within the FDSH band who run sectionals – both music and marching – as well as drum majors who move around the field helping rookies read drill charts. These student leaders hold their sections and one another accountable and the band is better for it. And did I mention the alum that come back to help each year?!
On second thought, don’t tell me any of those things. I am lucky enough to work with a number of motivated hard-working students at FDSH who are willing to be pushed, who will push themselves, and who want to be amazing. If you don’t understand how I can enjoy sweating my way through band camp and “dealing with teenagers” there is probably nothing I can say that will help you understand because your mind is made up.
Yes, I am tired. Yes, I am sunburned. My feet hurt and I got more than 11,000 steps in before 4:30 today (for those of you who are into counting steps!). And I can’t wait to get back at it tomorrow morning! The FDSH marching band members are funny, talented, hard-working, and very “coachable.” It is such a thrill each season to see the growth from day 1 of band camp and I count myself lucky to get to work with them.
I was standing at the counter
I was waiting for the change
When I heard that old familiar music start
It was like a lighted match
Had been tossed into my soul
It was like a dam had broken in my heart
After taking every detour
Getting lost and losing track
So that even if I wanted
I could not find my way back
After driving out the memory
Of the way things might have been
After I’d forgotten all about us
The song remembers when.
Those lyrics are from a Trisha Yearwood song entitled, not surprisingly, “The Song Remembers When”. And it has everything to do with why music is such a personal, powerful experience for me.
From the time I was young, I remember watching the adults in my life have visceral reactions to songs. I remember seeing tears in my mother’s eyes when the song “Because He Lives” was playing on the record spinning at the time. (At the time, I didn’t understand. Now that song evokes the same response in me.) I sat in the sanctuary of Emmanuel Baptist Church in Farmington, New Mexico, on Easter morning and watched tears start falling down the faces of nearly every member of the choir. I was probably 6 years old or so at the time. Years later, my parents would explain that it had been a rough path getting to the performance and it seemed like everything that could go wrong, was going wrong. All the frustration led to shortened tempers and some tense conversations. At the perfect moment in the cantata they were performing, the sun hit the rose window in the balcony and bathed the choir in colored light. The purpose of the day, the reason we were celebrating became the only thing that mattered and the responses of the choir members could be seen on their wet cheeks.
In my own life, there have been songs that have caused my eyes to fill with tears almost from the first note. There are songs that leave me invigorated and feeling like I could conquer the world. There are songs that hit me between the eyes with a truth I hadn’t considered before. And more times than I can count, I’ve heard lyrics that made me think, “Yes! That’s it! I haven’t known how to say it but those are exactly the words I’ve been looking for!”
Sometimes the songs I’m talking about are connected to matters of faith. Sometimes they are not. But one thing holds true – songs stick in my brain because I have an emotional connection to them. Or maybe I have a connection to the first time I really heard the song. Whatever the original circumstance, those songs are always there. I can go without hearing a certain meaningful song for years and when I hear it again, I’ll be able to sing every word without a mistake. More importantly, I’m instantly transported back to that moment in time when the song first imprinted itself on my heart.
Trisha was right. The song DOES remember when.
They say a picture is worth a thousand words. So here are a few pictures to convey what is currently on my mind!