Friday, June 26, 2015

Campers Eve

I'm getting used to the quiet in this house after Ro goes to bed. (Is that a good thing?)

We're packed.  Ro has checked everything off the list...and then some.  How it all fits inside a single suitcase is a mystery to me.

Rory was seven when Jill first mentioned the idea of sleep away camp.

"There's this camp that is for kids living in a similar 'family situation,'" she said to me confidently.

I wasn't convinced Ro was ready for a 5-day sleep away camp.  (In retrospect, it was probably me that wasn't ready.  Why break up the nucleus when what we need now is to be together?)

So I got my way...that year.

Last year - when Ro was eight - her mommy wore me down and I gave in.  Rory was headed to a 5-day sleep away camp in mid Missouri for kids still in a similar 'situation.'

Sure, worry seeped into Rory as camp neared.  (She's a Lustberg.  Anxiety is part of our DNA.)  But, Ro - as she does in most circumstances - rose to the occasion and squeezed the most joy out of her experience.  She absolutely loved it...allowing Jilly to point the told-ya-so dance at me.

I remember when we went to pick Ro up from camp last August.  She kept touching Mommy, kept rubbing her arms, holding her hands.  It was so apparent to both Jill and I (not Ro) that Jill pulled me aside later, "Did you see how she just kept touching me?"  Jilly was beaming.

Rory loves her mommy.

Camp Kesem pickup

In the prep leading up to what I've been (unfairly) calling this 'real' two-week sleep away camp, I've had Jilly in my head, in my heart, and by my side as I go thru the physical and mental checklist to ensure I'm covering all bases.

What's the best kind of bug spray?  

Do I need to pre address Rory's envelopes for letter writing?  

How many care packages should (I hate 'should') I send to camp before we even depart?

I think I've got most everything covered.  But, I'm also convinced Jilly would somehow have done something more and better to add her own brand of shine to the prep.

Case in point, I was writing little mini messages to Ro the last couple days and tucking them in her suitcase.  And as I'm writing them, I notice my handwriting.  It has a harsh quality to it.  It's not warm, not to mention borderline illegible.  Jill's didn't have any of these characteristics.  Her handwriting was all love and positivity.  So, how will Ro receive my notes?  Probably not the same as she would from Mommy.  And maybe Mommy would add a smiley face here or a filled in heart there.  Doodles.  I didn't doodle.

So while I may be doing it, I'm not convinced I'm doing enough.

B/c for better or worse (certainly worse), I'm both now.  I'm Mom and Dad.  And the reality is that I barely know how to get by as one.

And that's well beyond unfortunate for my daughter.  If anyone deserves better...

Anyway, she came home yesterday from day camp...smelling.  Her pits are the pits.

My little girl stunk.  So I trekked out to the store and picked her up some deodorant.  That was a first.
So, tomorrow I'm driving my nine year old on the precipice of puberty up to Wisconsin for what I hope and pray will be the a time of her life.

Not until now had the anxiety kicked in for me.  As I expressed to someone recently, it feels unnatural to ship the centerpiece of my life away for two weeks.

What will become of me?

Regardless of location and proximity, I love my girls.

All love,

J, J, & r

Just cuz


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