I am so nervous. It’s my first marching band practice and I’m so afraid I will be late, make a mistake, or forget my instrument. My mother is driving me to band practice right now and it is 6:35am. I have to be on the grid by 7:00am with my instrument put together and in my spot. We arrive at the school and there are about 10 cars lined up in front of the Band Hall entrance. Mom shoves me out with a, “I have to get to work. Have a good day at practice. I love you!”
“Love you too, Mom.” I say, running inside the Band Hall, CamelBak, music folder and clarinet in tow. There are already people in the Band Hall, milling around, talking to friends, getting their instruments together. I find an empty spot on the floor to put my clarinet case and take my clarinet out. I attach the lyre and the small rectangle of sheet music we’ll be learning today to it. My eyes search the room for a familiar face. I find my good friend Christina talking to a group of people I’m vaguely familiar with.