Why do we bother asking for things?

I sometimes wonder why we bother asking for things if all we are going to get is things contrary to the very thing we ask for. It is not like we asked for anything complicated. It was not even a complex or extensive list. If the list cannot be followed now, how can one expect the list to be followed a couple of years from now? I do not understand it. I honestly do not get it.

My brother made the comment the other day when I was carrying on about something,

“I never thought to question a deadline.” 

You know, I never really did either. Once the deadline was gone, it was gone. Yet at that point I had already been approached at least three times about something that was past the deadline. I had already been to this point, hounding people to get paperwork in past the stated deadlines. I had already been nagging about getting training done.

Have we digressed some much as a “church society” that a “deadline” means nothing when it comes to organizing something? When we are going through something outside of the church they have deadlines and sometimes they are hard and fast so why do we allow ourselves to slide those lines further and further from those “hard and fast” guidelines thus causing more and more stress in our lives. Frankly, I say enough with it. There is no reason for it. I like the hard-nose approach. If you miss it, too bad. People might not like that, but too bad.

After the past couple of months I might be a bit jaded about the whole process of organizing things and collecting things by a particular deadline, but such is my story right now. It is an ongoing cycle it seems. You ask for something and it does not come back. You ask someone to do something and it does not get done. You ask for something to be turned in by a certain date and you might get half of them. On and on and on. Of course, you can’t play the hard-nosed witch you want to play because there are children involved in the whole process and it really is not their fault they are stuck in the middle of this. Then again, it is not your fault either.

The problem is, it feeds off onto everything. It spreads into every little aspect of our lives. If we try to push one aspect of “the limits” we try to push it everywhere else. It might be okay in some areas, but not so much in others. In some areas it could be downright dangerous. Then there are others where it is just obnoxious.

I want to stress the obnoxious mostly because this is where I am shaking my head the most today. I ended up on the receiving end of several incidents of people’s obnoxious inability to fulfill their own responsibilities. The problem is, it is an indirect thing this time around. The real problem is, it might not be so indirect the next time. The reason it is indirect is because I am not directly connected to the people that were involved. Unfortunately, however, they were involved…and I just happened to be there at the time things happened.

It fuels the interesting thought on how things happen if we choose to something other than what we are asked. This could be about anything, potentially. It will feed off into so many areas of our lives.

In this case we are going to talk about a particular event. I am not shy. We are going to focus on a bigger event like Cub Scout Day Camp. It could apply to something even bigger like Scout Camp.

We are going to trust that the leaders that provide you with a recommended list have done this at least once. With that kept in mind, why would you blatantly ignore their recommendations if these items are not (1) extravagant, (2) harmful to you or your child, or (3) excessively costly. I have to say that sometimes the lists get extensive. I have three boys, I get it.

I will confess to being where many of you are. I get it. I also hate it when leaders do not plan ahead. I hate it when things are given to me last minute. I get it. I hated that I had to be the one being on the “giving” end on that regard before Day Camp this year. This really stinks when you are the one spending the money. That being said, however, everyone should take pause and realize that I was in the EXACT SAME SITUATION as many of them were. I had to go buy the exact same items. It was not a fun thing to do. I did it. I had to have them to show as examples even.

The ideal world would be that we have the supply lists an ample amount of time ahead of time so everyone is in the know and everyone is prepared. The problem with this is that people do not utilize the “heads up” lead time. They simply waste time and wait until the last minute anyway. Why complain about getting the list at the last minute if you are going to sit on it until then anyway?

Let me get back to the recommendations on lists that are provided. Sometimes those recommendations are made for convenience, but sometimes they are made for safety reasons. Other times they are made simply so that you will be a parent and not waste other people’s time. It is not too much to ask, especially when we are dealing with 8-10 year old children and not older children that can and should be able to do it themselves.

I guess my frustration lies in the fact that I ended up with an injury that I will wear for a while simply because of something that I recommended was not followed. Unfortunately, it was because of a child that I was not directly responsible for. It was over a $7.50 purchase. That is it. Sure the bleeding will stop and the scrape will heal up. My embarrassment will fade. The bruise will even fade with time. The pain where that bruise is will take some time. It will take several weeks. That is how bad it is and how I am. Fortunately, it was me that got hurt and not the child. The sad part is it was the child that showed concern and not the other adults in the room. Sure my leaders I was with from my group took care for me, but the other leaders in the room, not so much. The child that I thought would freak out after the fact, he was awesome and showed real concern. Unfortunately, I am not the only person that managed to do the exact same thing and receive similar injury. The injury? Put my knee through the top of a bucket. The cheap flimsy lids on the buckets are just as hard to get off as the sturdier lids. Do not be fooled. Well they break just as easy as they are flimsy. As such, I could not get this child’s lid off his bucket and my knee went straight through the bucket lid and I ended up knee first inside the bucket. Needless to say I did not touch another child’s bucket lid. Sorry, not doing it. No further injury is worth it.

This and we just spent way too much time applying sunscreen and bug spray to children in the morning before leaving for camp. I do not get it. These are your children. Apply it before you leave the house. It takes a couple of minutes to do it. It takes us 15-20 minutes to do it when we have all the boys to do it to. Seriously! By the time we got every one covered it was past time to leave. It is not fair to us as leaders. You are responsible for your child. We managed to make sure they did not get burned all week in spite of the temperatures that were soaring over 100˚ and we were out in it for good portions of the day. It is not too much to ask that the sun screen goes on before they leave for camp and you are the one that puts it on.

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