First Cello, Lafayette High School

Dear Jacob,

Thanks for your performance at the concert this evening.

This evening, my son, who, just last night, stomped upstairs, wailing at the injustice of having to practice the stupid, stupid cello, sat next to you and watched you play. I watched him intently following your every bow stroke, as though you were a rock star. Which, of course, you are. I watched you gently and patiently show him how to play the few notes he needed, how to sit, how to hold his bow.

As we walked back to the car, he told us how much fun he had, and how he had sat next to the most amazing cello player in the whole world. He said that you had been playing cello since fourth grade, just like him, and so you’d been playing for eight whole years! He said that he can’t wait until next year, when he gets to play the harder parts, and that he wants to keep playing the cello, although a few days ago he wanted to switch to some other instrument as soon as possible.

Now, I have no doubt that next week, he’ll once again wail about how unfair it is that he has to practice, but tonight he got a glimpse of where he can be in a few years with patience and perseverance.

I’ve watched you at other concerts give the same kind of patient attention to other kids, and I can’t help but imagine that you’ll be a great teacher and leader in the coming years, whether or not you choose that as your profession.

So, thank you, and the best of luck as you graduate and move on to bigger things. I appreciate your attention to the ones that come after you, and hope that my son will follow in your footsteps.