Friday, May 15, 2009

Baby Boy Goes To Camp

Sam is 2 hours away at the 6th grade Science Camp weekend.

We packed up his gear last night. It was me begging him to take a second sweatshirt and larger duffel bag and Sam trying to remain patient with me. I drove him to school early per the instructions on The Checklist, checked him in to the cafeteria, stole a kiss on my big boy's cheek, and headed to work.

This is the 2nd time Sam has gone to camp. About 3 or 4 years ago, when we were half-assing 4H, he had the opportunity to go to 4H camp about an hour away. It was out in the area of our favorite Sunday drive locations and I just thought he'd love it. At the time, he said he wanted to go, but this is Sam we're talking about and he is not an open book.

So by the time 4H camp rolled around he was less enthused but of course I was making him go. We signed in and he was ushered off to some ice breaker games while the rest of the campers were arriving. They didn't even give me a real chance to say goodbye. I watched as he stood with the group of campers and teenage counselors like a zombie.

Granted he was tired from a fishing trip with Pappy the day before, but I'd never seen him like that. And I didn't know what to do with myself. He looked like he could cry and I felt like I could sob.

I don't know how I drove away and left him there but I did. It was a huge hyperventilating, crying, moral dilemma, misery drive home. I was a basket case for those (probably only 2 or 3) days and made Mark call to check on him. Of course he said the camp people barely disguised their irritation at the call and assured us he was fine. When we went to pick him up he'd had a really good time.

So this time I was positive Sam really wanted to go, and I just knew it would be a total breeze dropping him off. But, I gotta tell ya, I still got a little lump in my throat for the first mile or so. I was thinking about how he's as tall as me when I smooch his cheek. He just looked so beautiful to me this morning, as all my kids do when I see them transforming right before my eyes. I marvel at this new person as the scale starts tipping another tick toward adulthood and I'm just so pleased I get to be a part of it.

And then, when he comes home with a garbage bag full of musty dirty laundry that spell will be broken for a while.


Amy said...

Aw, I started to get a lump in my throat reading that! I've watched Ava a few times, on the outskirts of a group, and my heart aches a little for how tentative she is! It's hard not to want to just manage everything for them!

He will have a BLAST, it sounds like! These types of things are usually harder on the mama than the kid.

honeypiehorse said...

He'll love it. Children are so beautiful as they grow up.