I was wearing a matching set of exercise clothing with a puffy vest over the whole ensemble. My hair was flat and my face was devoid of makeup. As I stepped into the vehicle to take Elliot to a class, I mentioned that I felt like I looked like a complete nerd. Elliot said, "Mom, just put on a smile!"
A moment later he asks, "are you wearing any makeup?"
"I can tell."
A day later, while he's sitting in his new acting class at the cultural center, the teacher asks the children to say their name aloud to the group and tell one thing about themselves such as a favorite color, or if they like to sing. Elliot is sitting next to the only other boy in the class, a boy who is too shy to speak to the group. The teacher asks this boy at least three times to share his name. Then Elliot says "He's shy. He wouldn't even tell me his name." The teacher responds by asking Elliot if the boy is his friend. Elliot says "No, but I'd like to be."
And that shy little boy put on a smile.