To be, or not to be, a scout leader…

A little background story: pre pregnancy with Thing 1, I heard about a cool new scout group that was just starting up in PDX and it was featured on my favorite news channel. Fast forward 2 kids and a chaotic life later, I totally forgot about it.

It wasn’t Boy Scouts or Girl Scouts. The only thing I knew, was that they accepted everyone regardless of gender identity. Even pre Thing 2, I knew I wanted to be apart of this group.

Fast forward to my very last physical therapy appointment due to my hand injury during a car accident. I do not remember what we were discussing exactly, but he told me about this scout group that his kiddos are apart of.

I asked him some probing questions. And ta-dah! It was the same scout group I was drawn to all those years ago.

This was Aprilish of 2017. Maybe May. I had to join. We had to join. So I emailed the group, and after a few emails, it was determined that the scout year was wrapping up so it would be best for us to check them out at their open house in Sept.

It was a long summer. We filled our summer up with fun adventures though. And we were eagerly patiently waiting for the open house.

The day arrived. We arrived. And so did tons of other families.

I soaked up all the information I could. And then came the bombshell. There would be a waitlist and kids would get in based on a lottery type system.


Parent(s) wanted to sign up and volunteer. In which case, their kids would get in regardless.

I twinkled my eye and smiled big at my husband……and the rest is history.

We went to a new parent meeting a few days later. And then to our first scout campout a week or 2 later. And the husband and I went to our brownsea training the week after.

I drank allllllll the kool aid.

Fast forward 6ish months, and we start forming a new scout group on our side of town.

I looked at all the positions. And I knew what I wanted to do. I really wanted to be an aux chair. I did NOT want to be a leader, in charge of kids, or section programming……..

The first meeting arrived. And guess who became the Akela (Scout Leader) for the Timberwolves (8-11 yr olds)?


Bc if I did not, we would not have been able to start a group on the westside.

So for the next few months, I went to all the meetings. I did lots of research. I planned out what my troop would be doing for the first year. I soaked up everything while I was the assistant assistant leader in our then current group. I began finding my courage and my voice.

I became as ready as I could. But I still am second guessing myself. I dont trust myself fully. The world of scouting is completely..COMPLETELY new to me. I started my first fire just last Oct! How could I think I could teach a group of kids survival skills and how to appreciate nature????

Ohplusalso. It wasn’t until recently that I figured out that I am NOT actually introverted. I am not an awkward introvert.

I am an awkward extrovert. That writes words down in a much more coherent piece than speaking out loud.

This shall be an interesting year. I am super excited. Like uber excited. But I am also super scared. Uber scared.

I am going to have a group of kids that is kind of sort of relying on me to teach them…things….

Today, I became Akela. For the first time. We received our new neckers. And we met a few of the kids in our sections.

It was an amazing roller coaster of a day. I felt like I was in a job interview for a job I barely had the skills for.

Today, I had to start putting all the pieces of the puzzle that I have been gathering over the past 11 months….together.

It was not as smooth as I hoped. I need to figure out my boundaries and rules as a leader. I need to come up with expectations that I can let my Timberwolves know from the very beginning. And I need to do this fast.

But it was definitely not as terrible as I envisioned it could be. These kids are following me. I am leading them. They are looking up to me. As long as I dont totally and epically fail….I think we will be OK.

This is going to be a year of learning together. On the fly. And from eachother.

One thing is for certain. I am going to be learning ALOT about myself, and about scouting.

The path to this moment, has been full of fateful coincendeces. And I know that this is where we need to be right now. And because of that, I strive to never stop learning.

I am striving to be the best scouter I can, so that my pack, will become the best scouts they can. To lead by example. To scout with a purpose.

To scout with a passion.

I may never have wanted to be a scout leader. But I certainly do not regret volunteering for tribune. My life, my families lives, have been forever changed.

For the better.

Everybody Scouts is where we need to be.

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