Thursday, June 19, 2014

Summer camp

You know, if you've been around homeschooling for any amount of time at all, the most asked question to a homeschool mom.  "What do you do for socialization?"  Well, since we don't have recess or a lunch room where schools have free time socialization, we have to do what other kids do for further socialization.  Extracurricular activities!  I'm glad for no lunchroom or recess because, well, those are the places I hated as a child!  I went clear through school in public school and I still get a sunken feeling about those place.  I was punched in the face by a boy at recess while most of the school kids looked on.  I spent many lunch hours with a tray of food looking for someone as lonely looking as I felt to sit by or hoping someone would choose to sit with me.  That was probably the worst part of school for me!  Anyway, what was I talking about?  Socialization!
My son has always been a social butterfly.  He easily meets friends.  We go to the park, boom, leave with 3 new friends.  Daughter, not so much.  Ok I can't attribute this to homeschooling because when she was born until nearly age 5 I worked full-time as well as served as a leader in my church.  I began my life as a stay at home mom just over 4 years ago.  My kids went to daycare and private school until 2 1/2 years ago.  They are 9 and 11 now.  My girl didn't come home telling me the names of the other kids like her older brother had, she was timid.  She hid her face when an adult spoke to her ... Still does sometimes.  When she went to kindergarten, she was more focused on goofing off to get people to laugh at her.  She came home at one point saying that a child at school was mean.  I brushed it off and told her that maybe she misunderstood, but she insisted.  A few weeks later I had lunch with her and that child was saying very mean things to my daughter.  We prayed for the child and later they became good friends.  It's hard when people say mean things to your child!
I had a conversation with my girl a few months back about someone hurting my feelings with words.  I asked if anyone did that to her.  She told me a story that made me cry.  I am now realizing that it was a situation that I watched play out, but thought she didn't notice because she seems so care free about so many things.  Wherever they are schooled, in social settings, there is a chance for bullying, rejection and hurtful words.  Thankfully, after gatherings with our homeschool group, she comes home recharged.  When my kids are hurting, I hurt too, when they're happy, I am overjoyed!
So tomorrow, she will go to summer camp.  I was her counselor last year and she was really clingy to me.  She didn't try hard to make friends and was a bit whiney.  I opted not to go this year because I felt she needed a break from Mommy and Mommy from her.  I want her to experience camp.  She was really anxious when I told her I wasn't going.  She was to the point of not wanting to go, but finally asked me to find her jobs to raise money for camp.  I got to sigh relief.  She is fully funded and is packed and ready to go.
Who's getting anxious now?  This Mom!  The situation from before that I thought she didn't notice is upon us again in a little different format, but it I am afraid to bring it up in case she really didn't notice!  I could make it a thing when it may not need to be.  Pray, pray, pray!  Big brother will be at camp as well as trusted adults from my church.  It's hard to know when to step in!  It was conflict like this that helped shape me into who I am today, but makes me often suspicious unnecessarily as well.  Sooooo, yes, she is going!  Yes, I will pray for her tender heart and mind.  I know one day I will need to let her go out on her own into this big dark world, but that day is not today.  Lord, give me wisdom to guide her and let our conversations prepare her for what may come!  May her heart pursue You more than any other thing at camp!