I felt like I left for college again Monday night. After eight years, our family’s time with Pack 45 Cub Scouts ended as the twins earned their Arrow of Light and have now crossed over into Boy Scouts. What does that have to do with leaving for college? Joining Cub Scouts was what finally made Nicholasville home for our family and now that we are leaving for bigger challenges, it’s just like when I left home for college. Leaving the security of what you know for bigger and better things.
When we moved to Nicholasville 11 years ago, nothing felt like home to us. We knew a total of three people in town and that was pretty much it. The people we knew at church didn’t live in Nicholasville. The people we worked with didn’t live there either. We just felt out of place and wondered if we should move back to Richmond. In fact, when I took a job back in Richmond, we looked at a few houses wondering if we could move back.
One evening after Colby started 1st grade, Misty made the comment about Scouts. We wondered what it was like around Nicholasville and when they started and where they meet. Then it seemed like the next day, Colby brought a flyer home informing us about a pack that met at a local church. We thought, ok, we will check it out. So on a Monday evening, me and Colby took off to see what it was all about.
Now I knew a little about Scouts. My brother was in it for a while but that was the extent of my knowledge. I dropped Colby off in one room while I went into another room with other parents to learn more about the Pack and how it works. After that I went back and picked Colby up and he showed me some leaf rubbings he did. He seemed to enjoy it so we decided that we will try it this year and see how it goes.
After a couple of months, Colby loved it even more and was starting to make friends in his den. I got to know a couple of the other dads in the group and enjoying the time with Colby. One day I was looking over the requirements for his Tiger rank and noticed that a fire station tour was one. So I sent an email to the den leader letting him know that I could work on arranging that if he needed some help.
Well normal practice seems to be if you step up to help with something then you are considered a leader. One evening at a fund raising night at a local restaurant, the den leader pull me aside and asked if I would consider being an assistant den leader. My thought was if Colby is going to enjoy this and go forward with it, then I should be a part of the planning process so I said yes. Along with three other guys, we had four strong leaders for Colby’s den and a good Tiger leader for next year who had a son in Colby’s den and had a son starting the next year. All of us loved the boys as if they were our own and would do anything for them. In fact, there are four of the boys from that den that are still in scouts today and are great friends.
During my time at the pack, I have been an assistant den leader for Colby’s den for a couple of years and then moved to a den leader position when the twins started. I have also been very involved in our Pinewood Derby and the District Pinewood Derby for a couple of years. I have helped at Twilight Camp at the district level as well.
The friends that we have made while in Scouts are still some of our best friends. And I can say I have made two different “groups” of friends. I have a group from when Colby went through and who have went on to Boy Scouts and I have my group from the twins’ time in Cub Scouts who for the most part will be moving on to Boy Scouts. Our kids stay at each other’s houses overnight. They go to each other’s parties. I would guess to say that they do more with their friends from scouts then they do friends at school and church.
The last eight years have been very important to our family. And even though I’m ready to be done with Cub Scouts, it is a bittersweet departure. But, I am ready for a new challenge and a new adventure. Off to college I go.