This week I managed to lose around thirty girls on a hike in the mountains. For more than thirty minutes I stressed, backtracking over a trail I had jogged to catch a pack of rouge girls out in front of the rest of the group. The other group I had left behind was nowhere to be found. I finally decided to take the few girls I still had to the closest campsite and ask the hosts to help me radio for help. Within fifteen minutes I was told that all the missing girls and other leaders had walked into our camp without us.
Inside me, both relief and anger battled for supremacy at the news. Their decision to take a different trail not marked on the map had scared the crap out of me. I don’t think there is anything worse than losing somebody else’s child, even if it’s only for a short time.
Once we reached the camp, I escaped into private shower area and bawled my eyes out from the stress of it all. As I sat there calming down, I realized I had two choices. I could rail at the other leaders for what they had done to me, or just forgive them and move on. It didn’t take long for me to choose the forgiveness route. Anger would only ruin the rest of our girl’s camp, and I still had four days left to go. Those last four wonderful days more than made up for the horrible beginning, so I’m grateful I managed to slap a smile on my face until I truly felt it inside again. That’s the power of forgiveness.