my return to camp

I have a confession to make; it was hard for me to leave for camp on Monday. I had too much to do and it felt like my life at home was not quite ready to stop while I went away for three months. Now, I know it never really stops but most years, it does slow to a point where it feels safe enough to step away. This year, though, no such luck.

It occurs to me now, though, that I am back at 120 Howeville Road that what I was experiencing the difference between fleeing and making the decision to go. Camp has always been another world for me, a place separate from my everyday life where a better, truer version of myself existed. So for years, my annual migration was a bit of an escape, a chance to trade the stress of my life for the freedom (and stress) of camp. It was three months where my days revolved around camp songs and the lake instead of finances and world news.

But as my years as a camp staff crept into double digits, it wasn’t quite so clear-cut anymore. The outside world no longer falls away as easily and my once nearly perfect escape has now transitioned into a failed attempt at hide and seek, like a children hiding behind the curtains with their feet still visible. Rather than mourning my loss of youthful simplicity, I take this approach- I am no longer fleeing my “real world” life. I can’t because while my days are still filled with camp songs and the lake, it is now mixed with bills to pay and a home to keeps tabs on. So I now make the decision to go to camp, not as an escape but as a part of my everyday life.

It means a little more stress and some more things to juggle but there is another bonus effect. That better, truer version of myself is no longer a summer only aberration. It seems that by choosing camp, rather than running away to it, I have managed to make stretch the best parts of it so they last year round. So make the decision, choose camp and join us this summer.

-Lady Sarena

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