I was in 8th grade. Sydney was in 2nd. Because I have an older brother and Sydney has three (see Jordan's family session from October), we found ourselves at the same soccer, basketball, and baseball games over and over again. Over time, I noticed Sydney didn’t really talk to many people during games. She was quiet, shy, and liked to stay close to people she felt comfortable with, mainly her mom and dad. I quickly made it my mission to be Sydney’s friend, and let me tell ya, it turned into the sweetest little friendship. Kids have always made me smile, and Syd was by far one of my favorites. A couple years later, my family moved away from Wilson, and with that move, my friendship with Sydney turned into just cute, sweet memories.
Fast forward 10 years. I moved back to Eastern North Carolina, 45 minutes from Wilson, and I've been able to reconnect with lots of old friends from my childhood. I appreciate the town I grew up in more now than I did, and I have to assume that's mostly because of the people, the lifelong friends that were made there (the bbq doesn't hurt either).
Recently, Sydney's mom reached out to me and asked if I'd want to come early to Sydney's graduation and take some fun cap and gown photos of her. I was thrilled to hear from Sonya and to reconnect with Sydney! Photography has brought some really neat opportunities into my life.
Sydney has grown into a beautiful, confidant young lady! At her graduation, she received the Optimist International Citizenship Award presented by the Wilson Optimist Club. The person who receives this award "makes all their friends feel that there is something in them. They wear a cheerful countenance at all times and give every living creature they meet a smile. They are too large for worry, too noble for anger, too strong for fear, and too happy to permit the presence of trouble." I think you'll be able to tell from the photos just how contagious Sydney's sweet smile is!
The sweetest moment of the night was when I opened the "thank you" card from Sydney's mom, and in it, I found a photo from all those years ago. It's pretty funny because...well...middle school. But I love it! I'll throw that photo in at the end of this post! Congrats on graduating high school, Sydney! Big things ahead for you!
Here's that middle school picture for ya!