Wednesday, June 20, 2012

100 Years of Girls Camp

Girls Camp has been around for 100 years!  I have been a member of this Church for almost 20 years.  I have served in the YW program in this Church for over 10 years (cumulative...not successive.)  And do you know how many times I've been to Girls Camp?  ONCE...including this year.  (Although last year I did go up for about 2 hours to help drive girls.)  Crazy, isn't it?  Somehow, in all those years, I managed to time pregnancies, new babies, relocations, and releasings just perfectly to avoid Girls Camp.   It wasn't really planned, but I remember thinking each year how fortunate I was to not have to go.  

But guess what!?  After this week, I'm so sad that I missed it all those years.  

I'm not exactly an outdoor kind of a girl.  I don't like bugs or heat or humidity or dirt.  I don't like going without a shower, and I like taking a shower in a stall even less.  I don't like public restrooms.  I don't like bug spray or swimming in lakes or sleeping in a tent.  I don't like smelling like a campfire.  I don't like having frizzy hair.  I don't like getting up with the sun.   I've never liked any of those things.  So, I just assumed that there was no way I would LOVE anything about being at Girls Camp for a week.  

But guess what!  I still don't love any of those things up there, but I found some unexpected things this week that I DID LOVE...

I loved going to sleep listening to the sound of girls telling ghost stories and giggling.  I loved looking at the stars at 3:00am on my way to the bathroom.  I loved not having a mirror and not worrying about my make up and hair.  I loved having other people cook all my meals for me (more on the awesome Camp food later...)  I loved that sleeping in a sleeping bag means you don't have to make the bed in the morning.  And I loved hiking through the beautiful trails at this park.  

This was a big accomplishment and a huge personal victory for me.  It was one of those things that I never thought I could do.  A few times this week, I wanted to just get in my van and go home, but I didn't.  And even on the drive home, I thought, "I'm so glad this is over, and I hope I never have to go to camp again!"  But...after a shower and a nap and a few hours in my climate controlled house, I felt the satisfaction of what I had actually done.  I made it!  I did a hard thing and I didn't die (or kill anyone.)  Which probably means I can do other hard things.  

I'm so grateful for the Young Women's program, and for 100 years of Girls Camp.  I'm grateful for the people who have made this happen for the past 100 years so that the girls, and the leaders can have the opportunity to do hard things.  Great things happen when you venture outside your comfort zone.  This week there were lots of those great things.

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