Tracking back to the moment I was
in my friends bedroom in Calabasas, after working endlessly for three solid
months at a summer camp in California, a moment of complete silence and
stillness hit me, I was unable to deal with this intensity of silence as it was
now something I was not accustomed too. People had always told me that working on a summer camp isn’t exactly the most glamourous or tranquil place to work, with every day including being
surrounded by all sorts from people, heat, bugs, dirt,
shouting, singing, laughter and tears twenty-four hours a day.
So, this feeling of finally being alone, and in
silence felt unnatural (even though it is something I had thought about for
three months of constant-ness, this moment of silence felt like one of those
moments that takes over your body whilst you resonate with what is going on in
your mind. After running on a schedules (and endless caffeine) I was now free
of work, late nights, early mornings, and free of children; yet I wanted it all
of that back.
A children’s summer camp, is a
place children go every year during their summer breaks to relish in the
outdoors, art, sports, lake days, love and to heighten their experience of just
being a child. Away from ‘normal’ life and technology they, as well as us (the
staff), enter this thing called ‘the camp bubble’, where nothing besides what
is happening at camp has the slightest bit of impact or relevance to anyone at
camp. Camp becomes an escape, an oasis. You forget the worries of the
outside world, all that matters is what is happening at camp.
Camp is different to daily real life,
whereby people only want you to excel, to see you grow, achieve and exude
happiness, with this being rare in today’s real world. I found it amazing how
people I had only just met would go out of their way to help me, support me,
and above all become family. Camp is a a place where they emphasis the notion
‘you be you’. There is no room for judgment or feeling of failure – you can
just totally be yourself. The friendships and bonds made in that kind of
environment are ones that change you. So, when I found myself in my friends spare
bedroom after the three months of ‘the camp bubble’, I felt lost without the
constant noise, the constant doing of things and the constant comfort of your
fellow counsellors who have supported you day in day out are no longer there.
This summer taught me that stress
is inevitable, regardless of any job you are do, what matters is whether the
stress is worth it. For me every second of it was. The biggest stresses I faced
this summer is now a place I leave calling home.