This week I posted the obligatory first day of camp pic of my toddler, all smiles. She had a great first day and I thought we were golden. But she’s 2 and this is her first time at camp. She’s in the same place we’ve been since she was 4 months old. Our second home. Filled with loving familiar faces. A safe space. But today’s drop off was gut wrenching.
Maybe she just wasn’t feeling it.
Maybe she was thrown off because her big sister came along and she wasn’t just leaving me, but her too.
When I left the room she unleashed that blood curdling scream that makes the hairs on the back of your neck stand up. I knew it would be worse if I went back in, so I didn’t. I wanted to launch myself in there like a rocket and swoop her up and smother her with kisses. My older daughter was horrified that I didn’t. She couldn’t believe I was letting her scream and wanted to go back and get her. For a second I really thought, “Holy shit! Is she right? Is my 10-yr-old really a better parent than me?!” Then I remembered she’s a tween and pretty much tells me I’m wrong about everything. I waited a few minutes and it stopped. Other parents leaving the room assured me she was fine.
The pit in my stomach messed me up all day. I was on pins and needles waiting to get her, and you know what? She was fine. More than fine. Gushed about her day like nothing happened.
I wasn’t fine.
Because mamas shoulder those shitty moments. We internalize them. We Obsess. We perform little mental autopsies to figure out what the hell just happened and how to fix it. When we got home, she crashed within 5 minutes, intertwining her little arm into mine. I had so much to do but all I could do was lay there with her. Fingers crossed for a better time next week ????????