I was nervous coming home yesterday. The director of the middle school play was due to post the list of names of those who made it past the first audition process. My sixth-grader auditioned.
This was the first time she’s ever had to compete for a spot in anything. The soccer league takes everyone who signs up, the school band welcomes all who commit to practicing, and last year’s chorus was open to anyone who could get to rehearsals before school once a week. When she participated in a community theater group, everyone got some sort of part to play; no one was turned away.
But the directors made it clear at the information night that not every name on the sign-up sheet would appear on the cast list. And, since Anya is only in sixth grade (the school goes up to eighth), I figured her chances were fairly slim.
So, driving down our street, I steeled myself for a sad greeting; I practiced comforting lines designed to boost her self-esteem. When I got home and heard from her sister that Anya had already left to walk the neighbor’s dog, I assumed she was looking for a little canine comfort.
Boy, I should have more faith. She made it to the list, though there were plenty that didn’t.
I am thrilled for my girl; excited by this opportunity to build her self-confidence and explore her creative side further. I was also happy to see the empathy she showed for those who didn’t make it, and hear about the comfort both my girls tried to extend to friends who had been left out. Made me remember that she would have made it through, had this been a disappointing day.
I know that speech I practiced will be used sooner or later. We’re all left off the list for something. But I’m happy I can file away my words of comfort and use congratulations instead.