I might be a bit behind the curve with this post but what an amazing group of women sang their hearts out on the BBC programme shown over the last 3 weeks. If you've missed it, catch it on the BBC iPlayer http://www.bbc.co.uk/iplayer/episode/b0175nh5/The_Choir_Military_Wives_Episode_1/
I've started watching it late. Episode 3 was my first watch and I was reaching for the hankies in no time and by the time they sang at the Royal Albert Hall, well, I was sobbing. So, I thought, right, start with episode 1. I wasn't much better. Tears by the end of that too!
The cherubic faced Gareth Malone turned around a group of women who on the face of it, stoically get on with raising their children, puting life on hold while their partners are away fighting in terrible circumstances, but trying not to worry. Waiting for whatever, little contact they can have with their other halves. I remember, as an ex-forces girlfriend, waiting for updates on Teletext about unfolding events during the first Gulf War and Kosovo conflict - before mobile phones and t'internet. The worry is constant.
These women are a force to be reckoned with yet lack an inner confidence to do what they so obviously do so well by the end of the process, sing, sing, sing as Travis would say. The song itself mentions that we hope the men (and women) don't lose their courage. These "wives" have to have the courage of their convictions. That their partners will return. That they won't be injured or fatally wounded. Courage that the MoD will provide the forces with the tools to do their job.
My ex-forces husband now works away from home too but not in war torn regions and to a certain extent life is on hold (a little bit in comparison) at times but we know he'll return. We can talk to him and Skype pretty much any time we like.
While the military halves are away, the women get on with their lot. Possibly feeling trapped at times; keeping the stiff upper lip that is so often just the way to get through the day. Day after day. Counting the days down til their partners return. These long spells can now be filled with a new found camaraderie and the confidence that being part of the choir has brought to that part of their community. All for one and one for all.
Chris Evans has been raving about the show too and I so hope they bring it out as a single. Make it Christmas #1. The Choir deserve it so much more than any fame hungry pop star wannabe...
I suspect I'll need more hankies for episode 2...