Finally, we've arrived to spring break, and for the boys, that means transforming into Phineas and Ferb for Camp Harlow.
The boys were very happy Monday morning, geared up to meet their accompanying counselor and the kids in their group.
While I wish I could say they both came home OVERJOYED with who they were paired with and the kids they had, that was not the case. Traig ended up being paired with Andrew (Perry) and were both put with a great counselor. However, Brayden was put with another middle school helper he didn't necessarily "click with" and a counselor that he questioned a bit in terms of maturity (no judgment here on either account...I don't know the folks Brayden is with and wouldn't want to cast a negative light...just recording Brayden's thoughts). He also felt like some of his kids in his group (age 8 and under) were violent and abused him and he couldn't get any of them to laugh.
Sigh... I'm finding one of the things as a mom that I'm struggling most with is watching my kids deal with disappointment. Particularly Brayden right now, as just being "happy" is what that kid lives for. So, when his heart has built up something that will be "out of this world" and it turns out to be a different experience, it physically pains me. BUT, I know that's part of his (and mine) growing-up process and so important for him to recognize that ultimately just being part of God's plan (and not his own) will be what leads to ultimate fulfillment.
Last night John got a text from Dave (friend and program director at Harlow) that said:
"So incredible to have your son and the rest of the young emerging leaders there! Seriously, B and his buddies/cousin are the next generation! How sweet to have them getting a taste of giving their lives away for the Lord at this age and to see the joys and challenges of serving Jesus NOW! They'll be veterans by the age of 15! Deeper waters, baby! Love you."
Thanks Dave, just what Brayden needed to be encouraged along with lots of words from John and I about what God might be preparing for him and his kids this week and how uniquely designed Brayden is to accomplish it. Apparently, he went to camp with a joyful heart this morning, and while I'm confident Brayden will be used for good, I can't help but hope, as a mom, that he also gets to have a little bit of fun and laughter in the process too. =)
As for me and Mikayla- we are here until Thursday. We left yesterday to hang with Michele and her girls. My next post will explain all the reasons why we made this choice to get outta dodge...(let's just say our house is in major upheaval right now). It's hard being away from Brayden and Traig - being there to listen to their post-day-at-camp stories and wake them up with "Phineas and Ferb" songs and laying everything out for them, but I also recognize this could be a good thing in my "letting him do some growing up on his own" process.
This is Michele's house...picture taken yesterday as we arrived. That blue sky...no Photoshop there, but sadly, it was short-lived and will be gone, gone, gone for the rest of the week with nothing but rain, wind, and gray in its place. =(
We took advantage of it on the drive up, having a dance party in the
car (with Mikayla, Sydney, Nati and Ellie - Michele's girls had come
down and spent the night with us when Traig arrived Sunday night for
training). We blared "Call Me Maybe", "What Makes You Beautiful" - some
new favorite dance songs among many other old faves. We rolled down
all the windows and opened the sunroof....it's those little moments that
you can't plan for that end up making some of my all-time favorite
Oh the ups and downs of life....and so it goes.
Day 2 Postscript:
Over the phone conversation with Brayden-
Me: Was today any better?
B: Yeah, my kids are respecting me more.
Me: Your kids are sucking more?
B: NO! My kids are RESPECTING me more. They are just so hyper. I know you are going to say, 'Welcome to my world', since you think I can be like that, but try having six of ME!
Oh, that kid cracks me up. It's definitely not his week, while today was better, he was disappointed with the way their group was managed today. I think the wound is festered even more when Traig and Andrew have indeed ended up with the BEST counselor that everybody loves - what a double-whammy that inspires even more discontent. Ugh, been there buddy, in many circumstances. What a learning week this will end up being for him.