(Continued from April 10, 17, and 24, 2010) ..... Well, from that moment on, even though he had never missed one of my events in the past, after missing only one concert, my dad NEVER missed another event! His renewed level of dedication and commitment kept going throughout the rest of middle school, all of high school, and even all of my college performances.
Because of the nature of college, it is not unusual for many students to not have parents in the crowd. But, without fail, my mom AND dad attended every single performance, to the point that it was noticed by other students. Although it was a tad embarrassing at times, I would not have traded it for anything!
Oh, and after I became a Band Director, guess who never missed one of my concerts? That’s right, for every one of my performances through my dad’s passing away when I was 30-years-old, my mom AND dad could be found in the audience, sometimes traveling as far as 100 miles to watch their son’s performances.
I was lucky ….. clearly, dad my understood my level of devastation at him missing my concert when I was 14-years-old and he set out on a mission to ensure that it never happened again!
I have always believed that the crucial moment at my band concert when I was 14-years-old, on a May Sunday afternoon, temperature around 78 degrees, a perfectly manicured baseball field calling for players to come and play, and my dad talking to another dad instead of watching my concert, helped to shape my views on parenting, my dedication to attending all of my kids’ performances, and my feeling of need to encourage other parents to ALWAYS attend their own kids’ performances
Yes, the knowledge that I would be attending all of my own kids’ performances began on that Sunday long ago, a day on which my own dad and I learned a very valuable parenting lesson together, one that neither one of us ever failed to remember for future endeavors!
Oh, and guess who traveled about 150 miles (round trip) the other night to watch his own child in a drama performance at his own high school? Yes, there was my child’s dad, front and center, not missing it for the world ..... or for talking to another dad about baseball!
I have said it often and I will say it again: Be sure to ALWAYS attend your child’s performances and events. It means the world to them and, by you attending and showing your love for them, they will be less inclined to search for love and security in all of the wrong places.
Keep loving your kids and be there for them at all times. You, and your kids, will be glad that you did!
Paul W. Reeves