I finally did it! On Wednesday, after thirty years of holding the position, and after one month of retiring from that position, I pulled the Scoutmaster patch off the left sleeve of my Boy Scout uniform. I have been wearing that patch since September 1981. I think I have now been traumatized. I pulled it off myself. I should have left someone else do it. It may take months of psychiatric therapy to get over this.
A few years ago I bought a new uniform, so this was actually the third shirt on which I wore that patch. And I should mention that this was not the first Scoutmaster patch that I have worn. The first patch is still on the first uniform shirt. This was the latest uniform, with the latest patch, the one with the current meaning.
That patch did not come off easily. I had decided during my lunch break to bring my uniform to a local lady who does sewing. I stopped at home, grabbed my uniform out of the closet, and grabbed a Troop Committee patch along with a new Journey To Excellence patch. (Our troop earned the silver award this year.)
I had applied the Scoutmaster patch to the sleeve with Badge Magic adhesive. I was in a hurry so I grabbed the edge of the patch and pulled. And pulled again. And yet again. It was being stubborn. It did not want to easily come off. Either the Badge Magic was working well, or the shirt did not want to lose a trusted friend. I slowly, finally removed that round piece of cloth, leaving much of the plastic backing on the sleeve. I didn’t care, much. The new patch would cover up the mess. I grabbed everything and left the house.
I do not think I will be wearing the uniform very often anymore, but is was important for me to change the patches. I have always stressed to the Boy Scouts that they should wear they uniform correctly and proudly. I scoutmaster should set the example. Only one person in the troop should be wearing that patch and that person is no longer me.
Now, if you will excuse me, I have to leave for my appointment with my therapist. He is going to help me remove the scoutmaster patches from the top of my shoes, the car windshield, my neighbor’s nose…