Journey 58: Aubrey SOARs

Aubrey soars

I’ve been under the weather the past couple of days. But this morning there was no way I was missing a special assembly at granddaughter Aubrey’s school. This bright eyed, joyful child was honored with other selected kindergarteners and first and second graders in receiving the SOAR Award. Parents and grandparents were encouraged to attend. I was there, along with Greg, Aubrey’s mom and dad, and her Nana Beth and Papa Tom.

Aubrey soars with nana beth and papa tom

 Aubrey with Nana Beth and Papa Tom

Each month, at Aubrey’s school, four children from each class are selected as  SOAR honorees. The children selected have demonstrated one of four life skills: Show respect, Observe safety, Accept responsibility, Resolve conflict…S.O.A.R. Aubrey was selected from her kindergarten class for demonstrating the skill of resolving conflicts.

I was so proud of her! Aubrey is a very intuitive, thoughtful child. She genuinely cares about other kids and adults and speaks to people of all ages with kindness and interest. Yesterday, I picked her up from school. She said she was hungry…and asked if we could go to Golden Corral so she could have shrimp! I didn’t mind at all. Golden Corral has their lunch buffet until 4:00 and children eat at a great low price. Being conscious of eating whole foods and not feeling much like eating anyway, I primarily sipped on unsweet tea and engaged in fun, lively chats with Aubrey. Our server was friendly and attentive and kept up an ongoing conversation with Aubrey whenever she walked near. As we were preparing to leave, Aubrey whispered to me, “Isn’t she so nice and helpful?  Yaya, leave some money on the table.” I had intended to leave a tip, yet I loved that Aubrey saw the kindness in the server, recognized that she was working hard, and wanted to honor that cheerful service with a tip. I let her help me leave the money on the table.

Aubrey soars with mom

Aubrey with her mom

Today I sat in the auditorium and gave Aubrey a small wave as she smiled a bit nervously from the doorway. All the honorees were gathered there while the rest of the children were being seated on the floor in the large room. Aubrey has only recently begun to express shyness when she is the center of attention in a large group. I don’t want to push her to do anything she doesn’t want to do, and yet I do want to lovingly and warmly encourage her to continue to step up as the unique person that she is. It’s okay if she feels nervous or a bit shy. We all do at times. What I love is how Aubrey is learning to move past that nervousness. At the right time, she ran into the room with her three classmates, smiling broadly. We cheered and applauded as each child was introduced and handed his or her certificate.

Aubrey soars with dad

Aubrey with her dad

This was a first today, watching Aubrey receive recognition in a school assembly. Whether there are other such times or not, I know this is just the beginning of this little lady’s amazing journey. She is an instinctive and empathic nurturer of people, and resolving conflicts and helping others will come naturally to her. Soar Aubrey, soar. There is a big world and unlimited blue skies awaiting you.

Aubrey soars with papa and yaya

Aubrey with Papa and Yaya