Aggregate \Ag"gre*gate\, a. [L. aggregatus, p. p.]

Formed by a collection of particulars into a whole mass or sum; collective. To bring together. Syn: To heap up; accumulate; pile; collect.


Tuesday, November 2, 2010


As an actor I volunteered to play the rejection game. I'm sadistic that way I guess. I walk into an audition room full of the knowledge that the people on the other side of the desk have made up their mind before I have even hit my mark. These are my choices and my experiences as an adult, so it is completely different to watch my children experience the rejection of not being chosen.
I know this is a life lesson and that it will serve a child well in the future. There will be teams Jack and Isla won't make,  or friends who do not want to play with them. She might not get a speaking part in the school play and his poem might not be picked for publication. Then again, they might.

We started making trips to Science World beginning when Jack was just a baby. It really is a great place to wile away a rainy day in Van. The kids love the familiarity of the static exhibits, anticipate things like Lego or Body World coming to town, and always there is the excitement of 'making' things work. My little scientists.

Anyhoo, in the four years we had been going, Jack had never been chosen to be a helper on the Science Stage at a live show. Granted for the first year he was a spitty lump, then I guess he was still pretty little for a while to play with Hydrogen and such - but he didn't know that. Jack always wanted to be picked and every time he was not, he was crest fallen. I tried my best to use these moments as empathetic teaching tools. "Maybe that little girl had never been picked either", "They were using big kids today", "It will be your turn one day, it just wasn't today". But still, baby Jack really had no frame of reference.

Too soon it seemed, our final trip to Science World arrived. In between experiments and tactile experience I tried to impress upon Jack and Isla both that this was our last visit before we moved to Rossland. We went to a Science Show, it was great as always, except that you-know-who never got to go up on stage. Still, we stayed for many hours, and then it was time for the last show of the day.

It was a weekday, so after about 2pm all the school kids had gone. As we sat down, there were maybe 5 or 6 other audience members. Isla was sleeping in her stroller. I had a good feeling in the pit of my stomach. "Jack," I said "I think that you are going to get picked today! Make sure you hold your hand up high." He held his little hand up so high and this wonderful staff member called Jack onto the stage! After what seemed a lifetime of waiting to a little person, he was finally chosen.
I could not have been more proud. Afterward I approached my new favourite staff member and explained Jack's circumstances. He told me I could always come and make a special request, but somehow that would have felt like cheating. Jack had made a wish with his whole heart and that day the lesson he learned was that dreams do come true...and he has the video to prove it!


  1. This is the sweetest post. I even got a little misty eyed reading it. You are an amazing Mom! xx

  2. Yay!!!! I am so happy for him :) Great post!!

  3. I got misty eyed too. What a special day for him! You are such a great mom- I agree, it wouldn't have been as special if you had asked if he could be the helper. It taught him a great lesson about waiting and patience and wishing and dreaming. What a cute kiddo :)

  4. Oh my gosh! What a wonderful reflection of a day mixed with many emotions. Your writing brought both a welling up of tears and then such a joyful smile. Thanks again for the authentic glimpse into a moment in your day.

  5. Yeesh you got me all teary too! Thanks for posting this- I've been thinking a lot about this sort of thing lately.

  6. Oh and I practically laughed out loud at the end of that video- too cute!

  7. Stephan ( 18, 2011 at 11:53 AM

    A co-worker sent me a link to this blog, because... that's me in that video! The Science World show person I mean. I am so touched to read that what I do could have such an impact on someone, and your words have brought a new joy and sense of caring to the shows and workshops I deliver. I started working at Science World because I wanted to show other educators the importance of providing children a fun learning experience, in hopes that they will want to become lifelong learners. I have an opportunity, at Science World, to deliver that message on a pretty massive scale, and it's moments like this that make me so thankful for the position I have. I am so happy to know that dreams do come true, and that even our seemingly smallest choices can affect people in many different (and sometimes wonderful) ways.

  8. Oh Stephan, I am so glad to hear from you! It is amazing to me that in this world wide web your friend and you found this post!

    Yes, you had a huge and wonderful impact on Jack! Now that he has started kindergarten his favourite subject is by far science. We really miss our afternoons at Science World though we have traded them for exciting afternoons of wilderness science in Rossland!

    Keep up the wonderful work. We are really so thankful for having shared this amazing experience with you :)


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