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An Open Letter to my Campers

Dear Camper,

I seriously cannot believe that camp is already over. It feels like just yesterday I was decorating the dorm and making your name tag while anxiously thinking about who you were going to be, if you were going to like me, and just how the summer was going to go in general. As soon as I saw you in the gym on opening day, all of my nerves disappeared and I couldn’t wait to get to know you.

Thank you for filling my days with laughter. You did some ridiculous things, and in the moment, I didn’t always know how to handle it, but I will laugh about you and all of the hilarious things you did for years to come. Even writing this now, a smile has spread across my face at these memories. Beyond the crazy happenings, we laughed more than I ever could have imagined was humanly possible. Whether singing and dancing at lunch, playing charades, or catching up on the walk back from electives, I could always count on you for a comedic time. Sometimes, all it even took was making eye contact and we both burst into laughter so hard that tears would stream down my cheeks.

Thank you for keeping me young. I know in the grand scheme of life, I’m still relatively young myself, but it doesn’t always seem that way. At school, I’m kind of out of the loop on knowing what’s current. We joke that I’m a grandma, but because of you, I feel like I can take on any teenager in pop-culture trivia. You showed me current music, caught me up on celebrity relationships, taught me new terms such as being “squared” on snapchat (when someone opens your snap and doesn’t reply, for my fellow old peeps), and so much more. Your energy was contagious and kept me going even when I was exhausted or having a rough day.

Thank you, most of all, for making this one of the best summers of my life. Thank you for making me feel loved and appreciated when you would run into my arms at the end of a long day or give me a bracelet for something special. It’s always my pleasure to go above and beyond for your happiness, but knowing you notice the hard work I put in makes my heart full. I know it’s my job, but because of you I often would lay in bed at night and wonder how that was possible. How did I get lucky enough to get paid to spend my days running around having fun with you? Thank you for teaching me which boy band member is which, how to be patient when you’re driving me nuts, and how to be a better coach, counselor, role model, and person.

Although my time as your counselor has come to a close, that doesn’t mean anything will change. I’m still here for you day or night to give advice or just listen, to be your personal cheerleader, and beyond. You’re the little sister I always dreamed of having, and I know you will continue make me proud every day.

I can’t wait to hear all about everything you accomplish in the coming year. See you next summer!

With much love,
Your counselor

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