Saturday, April 7, 2012


If you consider yourself a shy person, someone who would rather not talk to (or acknowledge) strangers, then don't ever go anywhere with Abby. I noticed long ago that she ignores that invisible barrier between strangers. When we are in a waiting room, she makes sure to say, "Hi!" to everyone, and she'll often plop down next to them and tell them how pretty their clothes are. When we are in the grocery story, you can guarantee she will greet the people we pass in the aisles. She will certainly get very excited if she sees "kids" in the cart next to ours. The other day, she overheard a mom tell her daughter that they would head over to the Barbies. Abby, who was sitting in the cart hugging the doll she'd just picked out, yelled out, "Look what I got!" She wanted to share the exciting moment with the other little girl. Today was no different. We went to look for some fabric - a rather tedious expedition for little Abby - and everyone we passed she chatted with. She had a great conversation with the nice lady who cut my fabric, and even included the lady across the way checking out the buttons. When we checked out, she was invited to help out one of the cashiers, which she did with a big smile.

Sadly, I didn't take any pictures today. So, I
went to the "archives" and found this gem of
one of our shopping trips. Abby has "graduated"
to the back of the cart.
I used to be slightly embarrassed and try to shoo her away from others, afraid that she would be encroaching on their privacy. Then I sat back and watched how she operated - and most importantly, how others responded to her. They smiled, they engaged her, they let her charm wash over them, and that was that. I tell you, there have been times when complete strangers have given her things (like a sparkly scarf they were wearing) just because she expressed her admiration. It was one afternoon while we were in a waiting room, and she'd gotten a total stranger to read a book to her, that I began to think how silly it was that we all sit and walk together, and never acknowledge that we are sharing the same space. I realized that Abby had the much better way of doing things, because when she left a place, she left smiles and brightness behind. This has been one of the many things I've learned from her - to notice those around me and to fight against my natural shyness and greet them. I can't say I'm anywhere near as successful as Abby is, but I'm still learning. Luckily I have a master teacher.

1 comment:

  1. Abby must take after Grandma. As you know from when you were growing up, I would engage in conversations with complete strangers. Some of this people not only share their day, get a smile from me, and even sometimes a hug. And now I am learning more ways to brighten someones day. Next challenge is to get someone to read a book to Grandma. LOL Hugs to Abby!