In the sixth grade, I moved to a new city and school. I moved from an urban lifestyle to the middle of nowhere country. I have always been an extremely shy, reserved kid although I have always had a few close friends in my life.
I was super nervous about starting a new school where I knew absolutely no one. My social skills sucked and I knew it would be an absolute struggle.
Into my first few days at my brand new school as I quietly kept to myself, I heard on the intercom about joining the middle school band. I pondered all day in class if it was something I should try to do.
I kept thinking that it would help me set my foot in my new surroundings and what better way to make new friends. I also thought about how cool it would be to learn an instrument. I grew up on music and loved it deeply but no one in my close family ever actually knew how to play an instrument.
During our third period, I went to the meeting for it and was instantly hooked. I could not wait to go home and tell my parents about the life-changing team I was about to become a part of. When I sat down and told my parents my mom was at first thought that it was a little weird and was only for nerds, although quickly through my years in the band she was my number one supporter.
Looking back now I am so glad I joined the band. Since I am not only shy but also really awkward band did not grant me a huge amount of friends like my 11-year-old self thought, however, I did make a few really close friends that I could not imagine not meeting.
I gained and learned so many things and life lessons that I will never forgot no matter how old I become.
First off, I learned dedication. Learning an instrument well takes a lot of practice and patience. Many times I felt unmotivated and wanted to quit because it was too hard. Thankfully I never did. In high school I started marching band which brought even more dedication. It took half of your summers and most of your afternoons after school. You don't know how many times I wanted to throw in the tell and call it quits but then all of my blood, sweat, and many tears would of been for nothing.
It also showed me the importance of a team. Of course learning an instrument takes a lot of individual practice but it also is a team effort. When playing in an ensemble you have to blend in and match your surrounding players. It also went with leaning on each other when days were tough. Even though I hardly talked to most of the people in the big group I was apart I know it made my many years in school better and kept from feeling completely secluded in a fast pace environment. It also made me feel apart of something bigger.
When I left to start my journey in college I decided not to keep playing in the band.I was ready to start a new chapter in my life without band being the center of it. Even though I miss it every now and then I do not regret leaving band behind. All of the many experiences and life lesssons will be in my heart and in my mind forever.