Malaya seems to find new ways to make me proud. I’m always impressed when she pushes past her nature. An example of this is when she chooses to do things like being part of her school’s talent show. This year her school put out an open casting call for the opportunity for students to try out to be part of a cast who would perform with performers from the SF Opera in a school production of Cinderella.
As silly and sweet as Malaya is she is very shy but has the heart of an artist! She loves expressing herself through drawing, singing, and dancing but doesn't care to be the center of attention (which is funny because people always gravitate to her.) She wanted to try out for the performance but was on the fence about it.
I shared a story about me in a similar situation where I wanted to try out but because of fear I didn’t try and I always regretted it. I shared with her how my regret lasted much, much longer than any fear of embarrassment and or rejection ever did. I told her that it was her choice but I thought that she would be wonderful in the play. I told her the fact that you even considered it in the first place said a lot and meant that she must have thought that she could do it.
As parents, we have to be aware of the fine line between being pushy and being encouraging! We also have the power of sharing our stories and having discussions with our children to help them work through their feelings and decisions. We never want to put our children in situations that they are not comfortable being in but sometimes those uncomfortable situations can lead to much-needed growth. I feel that there is more power in the choices they make when they come to it on their own (with our help of course!)
Malaya decided to try out and was selected to play the role of footman number one (a modest role, yet significant!) I’m impressed and proud that she wanted to do it in the first place. I am proud that she expressed her feelings and concerns about trying out for a role. I am proud that she considered my thoughts and opinions on her feelings and for ultimately deciding to follow through with it. I often tell her that she is braver than me (in a lot of ways) and I wish I had tried more things and took bigger chances. It was amazing to see the kids performing on stage alongside the professionals. I was so proud of all the kids (especially footman number one!)