Photo credit: flickr user ceratosaurrr.

It is Friday evening around 6:30 p.m., August 27, 2010—just about a year ago from today. My stomach is churning; I am quivering, sad, anxious, bothered, and anything but composed. Please, please, I need to know the cause of these feelings. As I think about my distress, I realize this is not the first time I have had these feelings lately: I felt the same way the week after school was out, every Tuesday night during the summer, the second and fourth Tuesday of every month, and for a full week in July—as though I had forgotten something very important.

I decided fresh air was what I needed. I stepped outside. I heard the muffled sound of marching band drums coming from the football field at the local high school. It was the opening game for the 2010 season. Oh, no! Could it be? Certainly not!

Yes. It was—the oh-so dreaded withdrawal symptoms of not being a Band Mom this year!

Everyone told me it would happen; I did not believe them. That was the source of my strange feelings; I felt this way during Rookie Camp, Tuesday night summer rehearsals, general booster club and board meeting nights, and the week of band camp. I quickly ran into the house, grabbed my purse, my keys, and my husband, and we made our way to the Alan C. Pope High School season opener. We had not missed an opening game in the past 19 years. That is right 19 consecutive years!

As parents of seven children who have all been in the band program, we have observed a lot of football games, parades, concerts, competitions, auditions, private lessons, and diverse adventures. Because we wanted to be where our children were, we became involved parents. We learned early in our participation that there was much to be garnered from this program. I am not certain how many of our children could actually get a sound from their instruments today, but I do know that they were taught life skills that will never be forgotten and that have taught them how to succeed in their chosen fields of interest.

One would think that after 19 years of booster organization participation, I would be ready to sit back with the feet propped up, watching the soaps, and snacking on bonbons. But no, not for this former band mom. I, now, want to coach parents in understanding what music education can do for their children and share with them the zeal that has developed within me after being engaged in many facets of the band program. I want to be remembered as “The Forever Band Mom.”

Photo credit: flickr user ceratosaurrr.