I’ve been in my car a lot this summer, especially at around 7:00am and 2:00pm. Weirdly enough, the radio station that I listen to tends to play a lot of the same songs at those times, so I’ve become accustomed to a slew of summer hits that I likely wouldn’t have listened to otherwise. They’ve accompanied many commutes and kept me dancing while exhausted from work or just life in general. They’re now the songs of my summer, the kind that you hope to hear on the radio in ten or twenty years with your family and then sing along to with utter joy.
1. Stay with Me, by Sam Smith
2. Rude, by Magic!
3. Chandelier, by Sia (the Maddie version because, ya know, gotta rep Pittsburgh)
4. All of Me, by John Legend
5. Am I Wrong, by Nico & Vinz
6. Love Runs Out, by OneRepublic
7. Bastille, by Pompeii
I just realized that I know almost every word to every one of these songs. Yikes.
Okay, this will be my last camp post for a while, but in honor of tomorrow being the last day of work, here are my final camp-related thoughts – for now, at least.
There are a lot of reasons why being a camp counselor has been an incredibly meaningful experience for me, but I keep coming back to one thought: I almost turned down the job.
While wading through a chilly – an understatement – Spring semester, I was able to find a few cool job opportunities that piqued my interest. The camp counselor opportunity originally appealed to me for the storytelling instructor component, as well as the familiar commute. I was daunted by a few things, mainly sitting back down in a place I’ve never felt comfortable, the lunchroom. I was afraid the kids wouldn’t understand my allergies, would throw food, etc., all of which are definitely valid reasons for me to avoid the lunchtime rush.
After six weeks of scraped knees, mini temper tantrums, ice cream-related meltdowns, fights over bubbles and soccer balls, wildflower bouquets, unexpected hugs, and many new four-year-old friends, the experience was like nothing I could have ever expected — it was so much better.
Ps. And about my lunchroom worries…it turns out the kids were a lot more understanding and considerate than most adults I meet, which confirms my belief that kids are pretty darn awesome.
Sorry for the long writing break, friends. I’ve been sick for days, but thankfully I’ve been feeling a lot better today and was able to go back to work.
Here’s the thing about being sick: it sucks.
There’s no way around it.
Every time I get sick, I have a moment where I think to myself: “pretty sure I hate getting sick more than most people.”
But that probably isn’t the case. No one wants to get sick; it’s just part of life.
As I’ve mentioned before, I really try to appreciate every day. Being sick definitely ups that appreciation, reminding me to enjoy any and every moment when I’m feeling well. Sitting in traffic? At least I’m healthy! Exhausted after work? Better than not being able to attend work in the first place! Etc.
Being sick also reminds me that I’m living in the moment and fully taking advantage of the summer. I’ve challenged myself to try new things, work in a new environment, and explore careers I never thought I’d enjoy, and sometimes going out and exploring the world also comes with challenging my immune system.
This is my last week of work as a camp counselor, and it has been a truly amazing experience – more on that soon.
I’m kind of the last person to dress down for theme days (Steelers day in high school? Nope. Not happening.), not because I don’t appreciate the festivities or occasion, but mainly because it just isn’t me. Now that I’m a camp counselor, I often have to take myself out of the equation, which will certainly be the case later this week when we’re encouraged to dress up for the Fourth of July.
So, any ideas? I can easily throw on a blue shirt and pink earrings (close enough, right?), but I thought you guys would have some better ideas.
Thanks in advance!
“But space is for boys!”
Today, one of my campers was determined to convince me that she and her friend couldn’t play a game about outer space.
Though I applaud the slew of companies that have recently encouraged tool boxes and Lego kits for girls, my camper’s comment made me realize that the “I shouldn’t like this because I’m a _______” mentality still very much exists in children. Have there been efforts, particularly in the last few years, to encourage kids to believe that they can do anything, no matter their gender? Yes. Are four-year-olds still affected by this mentality? Absolutely.
Topics like math and outer space, dinosaurs and soccer shouldn’t be avoided by young girls because they think they’re “not okay for girls to like.” Similarly, dressing up, playing with dolls, picking flowers, etc. shouldn’t be off limits for boys. However, it’ll take time to reverse the mentality that has been so engrained in generation after generation. Hearing what my camper said today really struck a chord, not only because she thought outer space was somehow not okay for girls to be interested in, but also because it makes it clear that a new message hasn’t been successfully instilled in the next generation, leaving these stereotypes vulnerable for a full-circle ending once again.
I’ve never been one to take a midday nap (even when I was a baby), but let me tell you – things have changed. My summer job is amazing and inspiring, but it’s also absolutely exhausting. I wake up at 5:55am, head out the door somewhere between 6:57 and 7:05, and am typically home by 2:30 or so. It isn’t even a very long work day, but I guess it’s the stress, heat, and sunshine that combine to make the perfect I-need-a-nap-at-3:15-or-else storm.
I typically have a lot of trouble falling asleep at night, but not for the past few weeks — I guess we’ll have to wait and see if this continues!