Girl Scout cookie boxes remind me of the lessons my mother taught me.
February 8 is National Girl Scout Cookie Day in the U.S. My father will jump for joy at that, as it is now his favorite season: Girl Scout cookie sales season. It’s also mine, for it reminds me of my days as a Girl Scout: selling cookies, making crafts, camping–images that now grace the covers of those cookie boxes. But Girl Scouts is more than that for me. Girl Scouts is about a relationship that has been the most important in my life.
Girl Scouts wasn’t just about learning life skills or interacting with my peers. For me, it was about spending time with my greatest role model: my mother. She led my Girl Scout troop, teaching my friends and I the skills that would convince us of our self-worth. She never pushed for us to earn badges or to make tons of sales; instead, she taught us to have the courage to open ourselves up to new things.
I look at the pictures from those years, and she’s always smiling. She loved being there for us. She loved trying new things as much as we did, although I’m sure sleeping in spider-infested cabins is not one of her favorite pastimes. Regardless of her feelings, she did it. She taught me that if you step outside your comfort zone just a little, push yourself just a little harder, you might find something you enjoy, learn something that will one day be useful. And then you can step a little further. Then further still, until the world opens up before you.
My mother initially had to force me through the door to becoming a Girl Scout. I’ll always be grateful to her for doing that; it led to a million new doors. And it introduced me to the cookies.
Girl Museum Inc.