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Thoughts on Thinking Day and running a troop

I am so incredibly proud of my Girl Scouts and their parents.

Our plans for Thinking Day did not go exactly as planned last night - despite careful planning - but the parents pulled together, making sure all of the girls got to the church to take part in the event and giving one of my co-leaders (who was having what has to be the worst day ever!) the support she needed to make it through the evening.

Then at the event I got to really see how our girls work together. Yes, I have a large troop (19 girls attended last night, but we have 28 girls total). Yes, they are a wide variety of ages, ranging from kindergarten to 9th grade. But it works. They learn from each other. The older girls help the younger ones. The younger girls keep the older ones engaged in events that they easily could have grown bored with after so many years in scouts. Often I am focused on one specific task and I don’t get to stand back and see how the troop works as a whole. Seeing it come together last night was a rare treat.

I’ll be honest, there have been times when the stress of running the troop doesn’t seem worth it. When all the hours spent behind the scenes - planning events, keeping up with banking, going to meetings, bending my schedule into a pretzel trying to make sure a girl can attend an event her parents can’t transport her to - doesn’t seem worth it. When all I’m hearing are complaints and I want to throw up my hands and say “I’m done!” because it feels like no matter how hard I work, people still aren’t happy. But last night I saw why it is worth it. I saw cadettes helping daisies - not because they were asked to but because that’s what they do; they help their Girl Scout sisters. I saw co-leaders hugging, whispering words of support to a fellow leader who needed it so badly. I saw parents trekking out through the snow and piling kids into their car so all the girls could take part in the event. I saw a lot of smiles.

So yeah, it is worth it. This troop has become my family. My co-leaders have become my sisters and the girls have all become my girls. It might be chaotic and stressful at times. And like all families, we occasionally have spats, but at the end of the day, I wouldn’t give it up.

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