Living through your children
Were you one of the lucky ones who went to summer camp when you were little? Not just a day camp, where it was more like babysitting, but a true, "As Seen on TV" sleepover camp. I wasn't one of those privileged individuals myself. I always wanted to go. Even to this day, I still think about how much fun it would have been.... waking up to the dinging of a bell or the sound of a badly played bugle….swimming in the lake....singing songs while sitting around the campfire...telling ghost stories. About a year ago, while camping with the family, I told my mom how I always wanted to attend a sleepover summer camp growing up, and she said "All you had to do is ask!" Well, had I known that then...
So, as most parents do, I've decided to recreate my childhood through my daughter. She's going to camp! (I mean c'mon, isn't that one of the perks of being a parent??)
I did a lot of research, trying to find the "perfect" camp...i.e. Least expensive with the most "fun". I looked at dance camps, drama camps and regular camps. Try it, Google "summer camps in MA" and see all the information that pops up. So, after many days of research I found one I liked, and of course if I liked it, so would she. (Isn’t that how it works??) “Camp Howe”. It's a 4-H camp located in Goshen, MA. It offers everything you would think of for a residential camp. (Have you seen Parent Trap???) Now, I had to tell my daughter....
We had discussed the idea a few months back regarding "sleepover" camps. She was interested...She had attended a day camp up in Maine and loved it! So when I broke the news to her that I found the "Perfect" camp I was unpleasantly surprised with an "I'll only go if one of my friends can go" response. She had your common worries, afraid she wouldn't make friends, wouldn't be liked by the others. Once I convinced her that she didn't give herself enough credit she then goes on saying that she would only go to camp if it was an ALL GIRLS camp. (What a kid! Almost 12 and she's still afraid of boys!)
I finally told her that the best way to get over your fears is to face them, not runaway. She told me she would think about it. Later on in the evening, I asked her what she thought about it and she hesitantly told me, "Yes, I want to go to camp" She called me "Dr. "Phillis" as my advice to her was so good. (I'm patting myself on the back right now!)
My moral to this story is this; Living life through your kids isn't always bad. The lessons my daughter will learn while she is at camp are ones that can't be learned only at home as an only child. She'll develop character, learn valuable life skills, make new friends and discover new interests. Instead of sitting in the house watching TV, fidgeting around with the computer and complaining about how bored she is.
So... off to summer camp for a week I go...I mean she goes.