If you aren't familiar with the Girl Guides of Canada program, click here, and do some reading.
The girls collect the badges throughout the year, and are encouraged to display them on their sashes and their Camp blankets, in our case. And how do these badges get on the sashes and blankets? Well, it would be nice if they could be ironed on, but that won't work for a fleece blanket! So they are sewn on. And in Bear's case, by me, Mommy.
Bear just left for Brownie camp last night. She is gone for the weekend. It is her first time at sleep-away camp. She was so excited when I dropped her off. I know that she is going to have a fabulous time. But as I sit here typing, I can't help but notice my fingers. They are raw. They have holes and sore spots where the needle pierced my skin when I struggled to get it through the thick fabric to attach it to the blanket.
You see, on the night before camp, (at tuck-in time) Bear realized that her Camp blanket didn't have all her badges sewn on yet. She was frantic. Somehow this task had slipped my mind over the last few weeks, and not because I didn't care, but because, well... they just haven't been on the top of my priority list, at all. In fact, this week, they weren't even close.
It's been one of those weeks where everything seems like the greatest task, and in turn, everything accomplished feels deserving of a medal.
As I gave her a good night kiss, I mustered up enough strength to tell her not to worry. Mommy will take care of it. Mommy will get them all attached by tomorrow, and everything will be fine. It was 9pm, and keep in mind the kind of week it's been.
I couldn't help but think to myself, what would happen if I didn't get them on there in time? Would she hate me? Probably not. What would her friends say if she showed up with no crests on her blanket? They probably wouldn't even notice. Would they think she was not a good Brownie and not want to be her friend anymore? Of course not. She's the greatest! Would they think that she had a mommy that didn't care about her? Maybe. Shit.
I couldn't even imagine the chance of letting any of that happen to my bear, or myself, so I sewed. I didn't want to. I was tired, running on little sleep and a terrible-two overload. I wanted to sit on the couch with a cup of tea and my book, and have my own kid-free, stress-free, worry-free, off-duty,
I sewed on 15 badges that night, and a few yesterday afternoon, before heading off on the two hour drive to camp.
Last night, when I got home, my fingers were still sore. But I didn't care anymore. The look on her face when she got home from school and saw all the badges on her blanket was enough for me. She was proud of me, and so thankful. I guess I forgot to remember the sweetness of my own child.
My efforts rarely go unnoticed with her. I also didn't care because I am a Mommy of a Brownie. A passionate, loving, considerate, thankful, wonderful eight year old Brownie who earned a Sewing Badge a few months ago and promised that she would sew those badges and crests on herself, but she forgot. She needed her Mommy to come to the rescue, and that's what Mommy did.
And now Mommy has a badge of her own. Her sore, but nimble fingers.
I am going to treasure them for the next few days while they heal, and while she is at camp. I imagined my little Bear all wrapped up in her accomplishments, in that now very decorated Camp blanket, dreaming of the great outdoors and using her imagination to take her to amazing places as she tries to fall asleep.
It was worth it.
Because these fingers... *deep breath* ...these fingers... they won't always be needed like they were needed today, and it feels amazing to be needed.
Now... where'd I put that cup of tea?