It’s that time of year. My daughter is selling Girl Scout cookies and she loves it. She missed selling cookies last year because she is in an inclusive troop – one that is made up of girls with special needs and typically developing girls. The girls weren’t ready last year because, as my daughter states, “Some of us have disabilities and so we decided it was too hard to sell them.” The girls are ready now and enthusiastically grabbed their order forms ready to earn their cookie badge.
My girl sold 87 boxes, completely by herself. This isn’t the amazing thing but my daughter knowing she could accomplish this without help is amazing.
The move to this troop from another was extremely good for her. She’d not been fully accepted at her old troop. It was too much for my girl to keep up and she wasn’t happy. If there is one thing about Girl Scouts that should be solid, your child should be happy with being in the troop.
The pace was too fast, the girls too advanced and not very understanding and patient and a leader who had agressive goals for each meeting, and there were too many girls who weren’t understanding or patient. My girl spent a lot of time thinking horrible things about herself.
“I’m too slow.”
“I hate the way my stupid eyes are.”
“I hate being different.”
“I hate the way I walk and talk.”
“I hate me.”
The biggest problem with the old troop was that my girl couldn’t see herself as a part of it; she never belonged. Then the girls in the new troop accepted her as she is and it has changed how she thinks about herself.
That is what acceptance does, you know. When you accept people the way they are you help them accept themselves.