Don't look back, don't look forward. Look at where you are.

Yesterday was my last first gameday ever. The last time that I will ever, as a student and as a member of the Trojan Marching Band, experience the thrill of that very first day of USC football. There are more gamedays to come of course, but only a handful of them, and there is nothing like the first game: No substitute for seeing the Coliseum full of cardinal and gold, for the first time since a November or December game that seemed like years ago.

There are going to be a lot of "last" moments this year, and I know that at certain times, it's going to be tough not to get a little disappointed. From my very first band camp, I could already tell how important the band was going to be, and I knew the years would fly past me way too fast. I was right.

I was going to write a whole post about not taking things for granted, because if you do they will be gone before you know it. And I do think that every single day, you should think about all the great things in your life, and how lucky you are to have them. I was going to list all the things that I'm grateful for, from big things like being admitted to USC, to small things like the amusing little running jokes we have in the band, and everything in between.

But I'm beginning to think that won't be an issue for me this year. I'm beginning not to worry that I will take anything for granted. The greater risk for me, I think, is that I will go too far in the opposite direction. That I will spend too much time thinking about how quickly it's all slipping away from me; picturing what it will be like when I march my last step on the field; anticipating how that last finals week in May will feel; picturing commencement and realizing that I may be seeing some people for the last time.

So my goal is to strike the right balance. For every great moment that happens this year, I will mentally detach myself, just for an instant, to realize how lucky I am to be part of it. And then I will try to let the instant pass, clear my mind, and simply live in that moment. It's all about finding the right balance between reflecting on events, and simply living through them.

Fight on, Trojans.