Parenting through the elementary years seems to be a gradual release, letting go of the demands (and some of the rewards) of mothering small children. Part of me welcomes the release, and I want nothing more for my daughters than to soar into fulfilling, independent lives of their own. But another part chafes from the change, wanting to keep the chubby hands in mine, kiss the soft cheeks whenever I want, and to feel OK with pushing the rest of the world aside while I do the important work of bonding with my babies.
I thought it would be years from now before I experienced a night away from my older daughter, a rising second grader. But when the opportunity arose to attend sleepaway camp, the day in which my heart would be an hour away from me came much sooner than I expected.
The Girl Scouts in our region offer a shorter experience for their youngest campers, called Pony Camp Express, at Camp Marydale in St. Francisville. A friend from church invited my seven year old to join her at the two-night camp. After initially dismissing it out of hand myself, we discussed it further as a family and decided to go for it.
Read the rest on the Baton Rouge Parents Magazine website.