In two weeks I will have been an older brother to Grant Irby for twenty-four years. That kid has brought more joy into my life than I could express. I’m extremely proud of him. On the other hand, today I stepped foot into an elementary school and again became a big brother.This time as a part of Claremore Big Brothers Big Sisters school-based mentoring program.
Moment of truth: Elementary school was a challenge personally, socially, and academically. I didn’t hit my stride or locate confidence until well into my middle school years. This being said, it was a positive experience and I had a unbelievably wonderful childhood, but it was still a challenge.
All things considered, I realize how great an opportunity I have in speaking into this kid’s life. Meeting my new little brother for the first time was a defining moment in my life and I hope it will prove to be a defining moment for him as well. Given my (nearly life-long) experience in being an older brother, below are a few thoughts from the day.
Note to self:
- Cool it with being so rational (thinking is my favorite hobby). Embrace the joy of being a kid.
- Look him in the eye and tell him you’re happy he is your little brother / you’re proud of him.
- Monkey see, monkey do — you are an example. Always be a positive role model.
- Create opportunities to chuckle from the gut– laughter is good medicine.
- Make it your agenda to learn from him every time you meet.
I couldn’t be more excited! Do you have any advice? Send it my way.