The other night Lily and I went to the Girl Scouts Mother Daughter Pajama Night. It was a very cute two hour party for girls and their moms. I had to go out and buy us both pajama's to wear since at this point neither of us owns a presentable pair. Lily wears her Dad's T-shirts to bed and I just wear ratty old stuff that is big enough for my belly. But off we went in our matching brand new owl jammies. We decorate pillow case and made picture frames. They had a DJ and Lily danced her little heart out with me mostly just watching due to my expanding girth. Lily loved it. The whole thing would have been very cute. BUT for one little problem that has been building up.
Last year the troop had more members. This year it is down to the "core three" as I think of them and Lily. The "core three" are three little girls and their moms that are hard core about girl scouts. They have all the patches. They do ALL the stuff. The are not kidding around. The moms were big into girl scouts when they were kids. I'm not sure about all three, but two of them grew up together in the same small rural area we all live in. They all three know each other well and get along great. I have never had a problem with them. EXCEPT - (here comes the turn) for the fact that the troop leader can be one of the biggest trash talkers that I have ever met. She gets disproportionately angry and resentful about petty little things. I don't want to go into every example of it, because my goal here is not to trash her.
I am going to say just one example because I want an illustration of what I am talking about. This is just one of many situations like this that arrise. At the PJ party we brought pillows and blankets and people spread them on the floor of the 4H exhibit hall. It has cement floor and is well maintained, but still it is the floor of a building at a 4H grounds. The troops blankets were all spread out in the middle of the floor. No other troop had their stuff out that far. Someone sat on the edge of the blankets and got their picture taken with their daughter. You would have thought they peed on it. She brought it up several times and to several different moms about "those people being all over her blankets." "I guess I am going to just have to take them home and throw them all in the washer." Listen, I am not scared of dirt but I certainly wasn't going to eat food off the floor of the 4H building. She just kept going on and on and on and on about those stupid blankets. I about came unglued. I can't take that kind of negative silliness. And I don't want to be around it. What do they say about me when I leave?
Another big issue I have is that the three other girls are very close and exclude Lily. My Lily is so unused to being excluded that she hardly even notices. I think it goes right over her head. But it makes my mama bear side come raging to the surface.
If you asked Lily she would tell you that she loves Girl Scouts. If I miss a meeting she asks when the next one is. She wants so much to be part of it for all the right reasons - she loves the concept of learning new things and making friends at the same time. She loves what Girl Scouts is supposed to be. But that is not what it actually is. So for the first time ever, instead of encouraging her to try any activity she can even dream of I am going to rein her back. I am not going to let her go back. We are done. She does not know that, and I don't know how to tell her. To the leader I am going to plead too busy with new job and new upcoming baby. But I don't know what to tell Lily.
-Sorry kiddo - I don't want you hanging around negative adults because I don't trust them to be kind to you behind your back and I don't like the behavior they model to you. Besides the other kids are not including you in their reindeer games.- That's the truth, but I am not going with that. No way. I think I will just make it up as I go.
Dear Grown Up Lily -
You are the most important thing in my entire life. I constantly agonize over making the right choices with you. I yell at you too much. I am imperfect and I make excuses for my behavior. But I adore you. Every single day I adore you and no one gets the chance to demo crappy behavior to you if I can control it. Not even me. You are too good and right with the world to have to be around that stuff. I am sorry I pulled you out of the Girl Scout troop you thought you loved in second grade. It was the right thing to do for you at the time. Love - Mommy