Girl Scouts and Accomplishment

A couple of days ago I enjoyed a delightful lunch at Trulucks with Beth Shea and Lady Oliver of the San Jacinto Council of Girl Scouts.

During the afternoon, we talked a lot about the Council, its great efforts on behalf of girls and young women and plans they have for next year, including the ever-popular Urban Campout. Also, we talked about how Houston Woman Magazine might be helpful.

I’m a big fan of the Girls Scouts, so I’m always happy to publish press releases and/or donate PSA space in the magazine — whatever I can do to help the cause. In a way, its payback for everything Girl Scouting gave me when I was growing up.

My parents always “blamed” Scouting for encouraging my natural instinct for over-achievement and competition and pointed to my treasured green sash full of badges as evidence.

All these years later, I still have that beloved sash. Today, as I prepare to post this entry, I am sitting here looking at it.

That sash bears the name of the city I lived in when I wore it (San Antonio) and the number of my troop (452). Also placed on that sash are some wings, four gold stars and three patches: one with a cardinal on it, one celebrating the 100th birthday of Girl Scouting (1860 to 1960) and another that simply says, “Be Prepared.” And, lastly, that sash displays exactly 58 badges — the maximum number the sash would hold.

I remember working on the first one – the Adventurer Badge — and all the requirements to get it. I don’t remember too much about what was involved in getting the last one – the Thespian Badge. (Obviously, the ability to perform like Meryl Streep wasn’t one of them!) What I do recall about that Thespian Badge was the joy, pride and sense of accomplishment I had earning it and watching intently as my mother sewed it on my sash.

“Finally,” I said out loud when she was finished. “My sash is full. MY SASH IS FULL!”

In my work, I meet lots of successful, goal-oriented women. They all tell me how important it is to them to always be setting new goals and meeting new challenges. They say both keep life interesting and fun.

And, more than you’d guess have added, “ I learned those lessons early on — when I was a Girl Scout!”

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