and nobly stand together hand in hand

i had asked my son what they did in chapel at school and he said that they had sung “school songs and pray songs.” i was curious–school songs? what school songs? and he goes, “you know, the rah rah rah one.”

rah rah rah? RAH RAH RAH? i looked at him incredulously. “you mean this one?” and i started to sing the alma mater. i sat up proudly, shoulders back, chin up, lifting the diaphragm, and sang. by the chorus, my voice started to crack. tears began streaming down my cheeks. memories came pouring in, as i remembered all the times we’ve stood in school and had to sing the alma mater. i could hear my fellow classmates around me, the low bass voices of the boys, and the high soprano voices of the girls, covering up my horribly flat voice. i couldn’t even finish the song as i became lost in thought.

it’s weird to think that things that happened 20 years ago just stay etched in your mind. i can remember those things like it was yesterday–all the feelings of teen awkwardness, those huge crushes, and the studying. i can recall our pledge with hesitation. i can sing the alma mater and fight song without missing a beat (except when i’m crying 😛 ). sights, sounds, and even smells of school overwhelmed me at that moment. it was very strange.

i looked back at my son and pulled open his homework folder, showing him the words of the alma mater that was printed inside, commanding him to memorize them. he read them over and over, but i kept trying to sing it to him (i guess he’s more visual than audio), though i could never make it through the whole song without the emotions taking over. he really enjoys his school, and i even caught in his prayer book that he had written that one of the things he was thankful for was that he got to attend that school. so hopefully one day soon he’ll be able to sing the alma mater, standing tall and proud, and i hope that it gives him many good memories 30 years from now, when he’s singing the song along with his child.

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