Friday, December 31, 2010

A Good Ending

Wednesday night was the Eagle Court of Honor for my son Sam and his good friend Matthew.  It's the second time my pal Cathy and I have hosted a court of honor for our sons, and once again, it was a good thing.  

As usually happens with these kinds of milestones and the events that commemorate them, it was a shared moment. Thanks to good scout leaders, good friends and a few miracles, these boys accomplished a lot and now have the award to prove it.  The evening was pulled together with an absolute ton of help and I'm so grateful. It felt like a family gathering because of the people that were there. 

One doesn't necessarily think of a Scouting event as either spiritual or emotional, but this one turned out to have both of those elements. In our church, Scouting is blended with the young men's youth program, so all the things that make a good Boy Scout are applied by being active in church. The programs are perfectly harmonious. So, it is not an unusual thing to have a discussion of the rigors of the trail applied to the journey we all take through life, with Christ compared to the great guide and rescuer, the Holy Ghost compared to the great hiking buddy and the rewards of the hike compared to the rewards of a life well-lived. At our court of honor, these things were taught with tenderness, good humor and a sense of caring that really, really touched my heart. 

I have to admit I was stressed about the evening-lots of things got left to the last minute in spite of having the date picked for weeks, I always feel ambivalent about scouting events because I'm such a lame scouting mom, and it came at a crazy busy time. In the end, of course, because we never have to do these things alone, it all worked out. The help we received to pull it off was no less than heroic, seriously.  I did have to spend an afternoon branded the Unbalanced Crazy Yelling Mom because I had the unmitigated gall to express a few expectations about how things should be (ask Sam about proofreading the printed program the next time you see him), but I guess I can deal with that now that it's over and it went so well. 

One thing I don't want to forget about this particular Court of Honor was the bond that was expressed between Sam and Matthew. As I was assembling photos for little slideshows of their Eagle projects, it made me happy that Sam was there all the way for Matthew's project and vice versa. They've had the chance to experience scouts and the young men's program together from the beginning,  and it was special to see how much it meant to them. 

I also don't want to forget, though I probably will, just how good it feels to be helped and supported and not have to do all the hard things yourself. I get so caught up in feeling like I've failed if I'm not the one to provide everything. I hunker down and worry and get all defensive when people step up to rescue me. This night was so filled with love and a feeling of community--for our boys, for all the scouts, for our church congregation, etc., that my heart was really softened and I remembered to be grateful for the saving. There are so many people to thank, and I hope to do it very soon. 

Sam gets his award. We forgot to detach all the doodads from the
case, so in the next photo, I'm fumbling around with that.

The mom actually pins the Eagle award on her son. 

A previous scout leader made time to travel far to be here with
the boys. 

Matthew honors another favorite leader with a Mentor pin. 

One of Sam's most beloved leaders called all the Scouts who'd ever
been on the trail with him to gather round the campfire so he could
talk to them personally. It was a beautiful moment. His love for all
the boys was so evident, and they reflected it back in turn. 

We feel very, very blessed indeed to have Matthew and his
family in our lives. 


  1. OH how I love this post. It was a fantastic evening - a seriously special event. I loved the "trailside talk" also - my boys were enthralled with that fake fire! I sure love how comfortable MY sons are with YOUR son. That deserves a badge all its own :)

  2. Congrats to Sam! What a huge accomplishment and it sounded like a wonderful event!

  3. Congrats to your amazing son! He's such a great example to my boy and I'm so grateful for that. Love your family!

  4. There's nothing more that I can add...except THANK YOU and your family for being such good friends to us!


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