Back to Life. Back to Reality.

Jul 18 2011

Camp’s over, and I’m back to life.  Back to reality.

Sing it with me… Back to life.  Back to reality.

Those are the only words I know to that song, which make them super irritating when they run around and around inside my brain.

Back to life.  Back to reality.  Boom!

I don’t know why I say the boom at the end.  It’s like my mind needs a place holder so I can keep repeating those 2 lines over and over.

Back to life.  Back to reality.  Boom!

Back to life.  Back to reality.  Boom!

Back to life.  Back to reality.  Boom!

Sincere apologies if you’ve got it stuck in your head now, too.  And for the booms.

Usually, my life involves rushing around, doing one million things at once, juggling bottom-wiping, kool-aid cleaning, cookie-making, and STOP YELLING yelling… all while trying to suck down as much caffeine as my heart can stand.

Greg can testify that my last 48 hours – the post-camp hours – have involved sitting on my hind end in a puddle of uselessness and drooling while staring without any focus into outer space.  This, ladies and gentlemen, is why camps hire college-aged counselors.  ‘Cause they can take a middle-school camp licking and keep on ticking.  Whereas I take a middle-school camp licking and need to be plugged into the wall to recharge.

It’s not pretty.  It’s just true.

Here we are, mid-July, and our schedule is as crazy as always this time of year.  So crazy, in fact, that it’s hardly worth mentioning, because it’s like saying “the leaves are green” or “I’m tired” or “stop wiping boogers on me.”  Obvious.  Par for the course.  Normal.

July, in case you hadn’t already noticed, is Camp Month.

At Girls Camp, Aden was a grand success.  Hooray!

At Tween Camp, I only embarrassed Abby 3 times.  Yay, me!  That’s got to be my personal record.  It’s practically a miracle.

And this week it’s Ian’s turn at Boys Camp.  Which makes me think almost exclusively about personal hygiene.

Aden spent a week at camp and showered once.  I’m pretty sure the once was because her counselor made her.  Since sometimes Aden smells like butt, I think her counselor is a rock star for showing so much shower flexibility.  Aden came home with 1/2 dirty clothes and 1/2 clean clothes.  That was not due to overpacking on our part.  Oh, no.  That was due to underchanging on hers.  And it’s yet another reason why college students are Way Better at camp counseling than I am… and one of a gazillion reasons why kids relish the freedom that is a week away from Mom.

Last year, I’m uncertain whether Ian showered at all at camp.  In fact, Ian returned from Boys Camp with 6 out of 8 pairs of undies clean and most of his clothes still folded and in pristine condition.  As for those 2, poor, used pairs of undies… well, let’s just say that they lovingly and selflessly gave their life for camp, and we laid them to rest with respect, honor, and a 21-gun salute into the garbage can.  The outside garbage can where I was less likely to smell them.

Yesterday, Greg packed Ian for camp.  I was still in Useless Puddle mode, and Greg wisely decided to save his wife’s energy for other things later.  (Greg’s a smart, smart man.)  But I got to field Greg’s important packing questions.  Questions like, “Should I pack the amount of shampoo I want Ian to use, or the amount he’ll actually use?”  Ah – the age-old question!  Do I believe the best or accept reality?

Well, around these parts, we’re all about perspective.  While we strive to make things better and to give our kids new skills all the time, we also believe that living into reality makes things kick-in-the-dirty-undies funny.  So, although we packed Ian a full bottle of shampoo, we expect it to come back to reality… still full.

Ian will return from camp on Friday.  I think it will take us that long to finish installing the special, outdoor HazMat shower and to plan appropriate memorial services for the undies we deployed on this mission.

I love camp.  But I also love life.  I love reality.  And I love my stinky, sweaty, crusty kids.