I had to chuckle last night. Our younger son has been in our Community Band for years now. They have about 3 concerts a summer and we always attend. (We are after all, both band parents and band geeks!) Unless something major and unexpected comes up, we’re going to these kinds of events. So, the concert started at 7PM at the Community Park in the center of town.
My wife had a Bible Study that ended at 6:30PM. So, we had made all the necessary plans to be ready to go as soon as she got home. Before our son had to leave to go get ready for the concert, he was kind enough to take our van out and fill it with gas. Meanwhile, I took the dog out and got a thermos of water ready to take. When my wife walked in the door, our son was gone to the park and we were ready to go!
I suggested we take the dog with us. Given the circumstances, she could go. And she would MUCH rather go with us than be closed up in the bathroom while we were gone. We got her in the van and off we went! The park is literally just a very few blocks away, so we got there quickly. And that’s when events like this get interesting for us.
Walking out into the grass in front of the band shell is a challenge for me. I am NOT very steady in that kind of environment, as I have shared before. Therefore, in an attempt to keep me from being set up to potentially fall, we have learned to try and find a parking space that is close enough to the stage that we can sit in the car and still hear the concert. But, because of my rather severe hearing impairment, that can be a challenge. Gee- can’t go sit in the grass AND need to be close enough to sit in the car and still hear! Could I BE more of a pain?!
We ended up having things work out pretty well. The parking lot that sits right next to the park/band shell was still somewhat empty. We parked right along the side of the parking lot that sits closest to the band shell. We had 25 minutes left before the concert started so we left the car running and talked until concert time.
When it started, we opened the car windows and shut the car off so I could hear better. Meanwhile, the dog switched back and forth between the two middle seats, watching people go by and wanting to get out and see EVERY dog that she saw! The concert was great, lasting about 45 minutes. (Our son had a trumpet solo on, of all things, a medley of Meatloaf’s greatest hits! NOT a song you’re going to hear at most Community Band concerts!) Once the last note was played, we rolled windows back up, started to car to cool it back off and drove home. The dog was JUST as happy to get home as she was to go in the first place!
Back to my opening sentence- WHY did I have to chuckle? There is “normal” and then there is “normal”. The OLD normal would have been A. leave the dog home, B. take our lawn chairs and set up in the grass. Listen to the concert. Go home. But, given BOTH the effects of the 2014 brain tumor (hearing) and the cancer, our NEW normal was MUCH different than that. And yet, it was one of the most “normal” things we’ve done in the past few weeks.
The truth is this- life changes. And those changes impact each of us. And the key to the whole thing is- how do you react to the changes? Do you embrace the new normal because you simply don’t have any other REAL choices or do you stay behind closed doors, refuse to change and therefore miss out on life? Do I wish we could have the “old normal” back? Every day and twice on Sunday. But we can’t get that back, so we embrace the new one so that we can continue to live life. Therefore, I say, “Great concert!”
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