Sunday, July 03, 2011

Drop off at camp

Today was the first day of the three week session at Gwynn Valley.  Natalie was bouncing off walls silly, it was getting annoying.  For the last couple of days I kept saying "we gotta get you to camp."

Turned out, and we were fools not to have perceived it or otherwise discovered it, she was nervous.  Last summer at camp was -- as dedicated readers will recall -- really a transformative experience for her.  She was nervous at first, but she loved it loved it loved it.  She was so excited when I came to pick her up, really glowing in a super-positive way that I hadn't seen for a long time.  The horseback riding, doing a musical, making friends, singing songs, a whole range of pure childlike activities that are somehow less prevalent down in the lowlands, though school's really not that bad.

And when I suggested to her that she go for 3 weeks this summer, she was all over it, no hesitation.  And she is all about whatever bits of independence we grant her at home:  stay at home alone, walk to the library alone, walk to the drug store alone, she loves it all.  She generally revels in increasing independence.

But, 10 days and 3 weeks are, in fact, different, and she's never been away from us for that long before, and she finally brought it up herself on the way there today and Mary and I were like, of course she's nervous.  3 weeks is a long time.  So when she was all settled in and it was time to say goodbye, she leaned down from her bunk and gave us extra big, extra long hugs.  Which is not really her normal way of being.  And then we left.

But in 3 weeks, when I go to pick her up, I'm certain it will be all good.  And then we'll move on to 4 or 5 weeks.

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