Sunday, October 15, 2006

So this is looking to be an interesting year at guides. (It also looks like it might be the last for the seventh Waterloo guides, but that's a different story entirely). We have a very small company, making it easier to manage, but one of the girls is developmentally challenged.

This isn't the first time I've worked with a girl who has a hard time with what we expect of her, who can't remember to wait for the other girls, who doesn't sit well, who needs some extra attention, and a bit of leeway in the rules. It is, however, the first time I've had to do so as a guider (rather than just a teenager helping out.) Before, I was always able to turn to the guiders for help, and just follow their lead. Currently I have the most experience of any of the guiders in the company. I'm just not used to that sort of authority.

Having been put in the hot seat as I was, I have now been able to look back at some other circumstances where the guider in charge, who I have been known to look to as an all-knowing source of what to do (the image is really well kept), was out of her depth. It's a really odd feeling to have childhood icons knocked down to human size like that. Rather scary as a matter of fact. Especially when it starts to happen to parents.

Like most people, I found it really difficult to have to realise that my mother was once just like me, and to see parallels between where I am now, and realise that she was there once. But I did survive that. What's scary now is to realise how much like me she still is. There's no magic potion, no fairy who granted her a wish to all of a sudden become "mom" and be exempt from the doubts that plague her children. She still struggles with the same problems that plagued her at my age, and she is still the same person.

And despite the difficulty I am having in equating us, I am glad that she has done such a good job of hiding that.

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