Reflection from Lydia Hartman-Keiser, 2015 Summer Staff
By Thursday afternoon the week of Pre-Junior Camp, I was tired and my tolerance for whining was dropping drastically. My cabin had chose friendship bracelets as our cabin activity and having never made a friendship bracelet before, I felt quite unprepared to lead it. My cabin eagerly crowded around the bin full of colorful string- changing their minds over and over again about what colors they wanted. After cutting everyone’s string and locating the friendship bracelet instruction book, the girls began crossing one string over another.
About 15 minutes later, Katie threw her bracelet down in frustration and said, “Mine looks terrible! It’s not like the picture at all, and I hate it!” I was about to offer to cut her more string to start a new one when Rachel chimed in saying, “It doesn’t have to match the book, Katie. It’s perfect because you made it. You just made a new design that’s all!” Katie no longer thought her bracelet was a failure and happily finished it. Rachel’s simple, yet wise words of encouragement were a profound reminder to me that as a community, at Friedenswald and in other places, we need to support each other and build each other up- especially when trying something new and we feel as if we failed. Rachel’s words encouraged me to be aware of ways in which I can support and help others see their own value. Maybe I’ll make them a friendship bracelet.