Taking Risks: Audrey and Lizzet
it’s something as simple as going ice skating that reveals and releases the
inner potential of a child. Big Sister Audrey made that discovery when she took
her Little Sister Lizzet to the local ice skating rink to experience an
activity she’d enjoyed as a child. She saw Lizzet’s “can-do attitude” overcome
uncertainty and help her skate across the ice without help.
such a great kid. She’s so curious about things in life,” said Audrey, who’s
only been matched with Lizzet for a couple of months. “On one of our first
outings we went to Starbucks because as an 8-year-old she’s very grown up and
thinks she drinks coffee. So, we sat down and made a list of a lot of things we
wanted to do. Ice skating is something I wanted to show her and Lizzet was
excited to try.”
willingness to try new things made the experience particularly meaningful for
both of them. “Thank goodness that curiosity stuck with her even after she’d
been struggling to learn to skate for almost an hour,” Audrey said.
rink has a wide section at one end where there are no handrails to hang onto and
skaters must venture across the ice on their own, or try to hang onto the wall
or a helper. “The first few times we crossed that part Lizzet was nervous and
held onto my hand the whole way, which frankly I just loved because she is the
cutest,” Audrey laughed.
that, Lizzet would let go of her Big Sister’s hand, fall, get help to get back
up, and go again. “Finally, she felt ready to try this section on her own. She
let go of my hand and it was just awesome,” Audrey recalled. “She made it to
the middle of the ice and I could tell that she had started to panic. I told
her that she could do it, to slow down and take a breath. She stopped, took a
deep breath, and then she looked forward, and I could just see the fire in her
eyes that said ‘I’m going to do this!’”
one little movement of her skate at a time, Lizzet made it across the ice and
didn’t fall. “We had a party on the other side of that rink,” Audrey said.
“People must have thought she’d landed an Olympic-type jump because I was
jumping up and down and she was so excited. It was a really great moment, a
moment of seeing her determination to succeed really pay off.”
was so afraid of falling,” Audrey continued. “One of the big discussions we had
was that everyone falls, even those experienced skaters doing spins and jumps.
One thing I constantly reiterated was that falling is not failing. If she never
wanted to skate again that would be okay, but at least she would have tried
Lizzet realized that falling was okay, she was willing to try skating by
herself. “I can’t tell you that she learned to ice skate completely or that
she’s going to want to go again,” Audrey said, “But I can tell you that by the
end of our outing she was not afraid to try something new and risk being
unsuccessful.”Read more about BBBS and sign up to follow our blog here