It usually happens during that first week of camp, when the adrenaline and crazy-making of packing, labeling, shipping, driving, hugging, kissing, and saying good bye has ended when you realize… your kid isn’t home! And won’t be home for a while!
If this thought scares the summer out of you, don’t worry, you’re not alone. Moms who are sending their kids away for the first time might feel this the strongest, but even veteran camp moms get that jolt every summer: what do I do now?!
Well first, take a deep breath, enjoy the peace and quiet if you’re a campty nester™ (or at least some if younger sibs are still home), and be SO glad that your child is enjoying the gift of summer as you speak! And if that doesn’t ease your jitters, we have the perfect First Week of Camp Survival Kit right here:
- Rosé: First and foremost. Your kid is having fun, and you should too! Invite your fellow lonely parents over for a drink (or two…) and relish in the joy of knowing your kids are having the time of their lives. Pop a bottle of summer’s finest. You did know summer comes in a bottle, right?
- Free time: You know that to do list that has been steadily growing throughout the winter and spring months? Get on it. Catch up with friends, clean the garage, go on a trip, shop for visiting day… time is your gift for the summer.
- Ace bandage/brace: So we all know your eyes are glued to the screen right now and your most-visited website is the camp photos page. Pictures of your child having fun are so exciting – and a relief – but don’t become a slave to the site! When your wrist feels achey and your symptoms match up with the carpal tunnel search on webMD … that’s when you know you’ve overdone it. Stop. the. endless. scrolling. Reach for the bandage and repeat step 1 and 2.
- Sunglasses: Among all this excitement and joy for summer, we know there are going to be those days where you just miss your babies, you have a hard phone call, or received a letter that wasn’t the happiest. As a parent, it’s only natural to have moments of sadness. Break out the tissues and sunglasses and power through – by the end of the summer, you will know it was all worth it.
- Date night: Rediscover what date night really means. Go out with your spouse, your girlfriends, your fellow camp parents, and have absolutely NO shame in commiserating, confiding, and non-stop chatting about what you think your kids are doing right this very second.
- Work it out: When that childsick feeling starts to take hold it’s time to put a little pep in your step with some movement and mindfulness.
- Exercise gives you endorphins and endorphins make you happy. Take a walk, hit the gym, run in the great outdoors, get a little soul and cycle
- Live a happier healthier life with just a few minutes of meditation everyday. Zenning out is just a download away. Check out Headspace and breathe easier.
And finally, when you need something extra to get you through, just know a massive hug from your child is waiting for you at camp. They are happy, healthy, and will be just as eager to run into your arms as they were before they left. And it’s totally cool to have a countdown ’til visiting day.