Will run for bacon

This morning we participated in the Girl Scouts of Eastern Missouri 1-mile fun run/walk, called “Run for the Cookies.” It’s an annual event that Zoe and I have done for five consecutive years, and M has done for the last three. It’s a good excuse to get up on the lazy Saturday after Thanksgiving and get moving, but my favorite part is being in the middle of a huge group of really cool people. Because Girl Scouts are cool beans.

Today I told M and Zoe to run ahead; I was content to walk at my usual brisk pace alone. They took off and I found my pace and watched everyone around me. There were family groups who would fly past me at a run, who I would then pass as they were walking slowly to catch their breath. We’d slingshot past each other the entire mile. I heard skipping and turned my head to watch a very tall grandfather holding hands with two grandchildren skip past, the joy evident in all three of them. I heard a mom cajoling a little girl of five or six to jog, telling her, “This is just like a 15-minute ballet dance. You can do this!” She was nearly successful until her daughter saw the three-mile marker from the 5k race that was before ours and melted down. “Three miles? Three miles! Does that mean we’ve already done three miles or we have three miles to go?” Either way she wasn’t happy, and she was having none of her mother’s patient explanation that the marker was for a different race, and that ours was only one mile. I saw groups of women and girls in matching tutus, and matching headbands with multi-colored foil streamers, and t-shirts and animal costumes. I heard one little girl say to her friend, “Let’s do this, girl!” right before they zoomed past.

This is what Girl Scouts is all about. I watched people encourage each other for a whole mile, and I had fun encouraging others, too. I knew I was in a large group of people, male and female, who firmly believe in empowering girls to become strong women and good leaders. It was fantastic.

I’m sure we’ll sign up next year, and I will again walk my pace and let M and Zoe decide what pace suits them. I will walk for a lot, including cookies, but there isn’t much I will run for. Okay, there’s only one thing I’ll run for. There’s gotta be a “Run for the Bacon” out there somewhere, right? I should start training now. I’m all set. I have a package of bacon in the fridge.

#blog#girl scouts#personal essay#writing

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