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  • Tara R

AND THEY'RE OFF...!


Congrats! You made it! You survived the looooooong goodbye, and sent your kids merrily (or possibly mope-ily) off to camp. Emotional? Sure. But, really, don't look back... 5 reasons why the send-off is your savior: 1. You need to stop eating. It is indeed summer, but we've been eating like we're gearing up for a nuclear winter. The days before camp can eeeeek on. Anxiety is high, structure is low, yet one can always forge ahead through a steady binge of last brunches, lunches and suppers. Round the clock, it'll be a "yes" to the "last Laduree, last crispy sushi, last Strawberry Acai Refresher with the two pumps of raspberry..." -- all before the last trip to buy 12 bags of gummy crap that, despite your injudicious sampling, still weighs down your child's backpack like a two-ton truck. The next meal leads to the next ice cream which leads to the two pound-cookie which leads to the REAL last trip to It's Sugar -- which leads to you wishing it was still coat season.

2. You need to stop texting. Your child is leaving the nest, to build competency and independence, which will likely render you suddenly incompetent and dependent. There are just so many questions. Is so-and-so not coming back to camp? What's a caboodle? Did you pack a Campfire or a Mighty? What's the best lice shampoo? What color nails is your daughter getting? They say there's no such thing as a stupid question. But they may be wrong.

3. Your kids will look up. Like any good mom, I limit screen time. Ha, ha. In the weeks before I bid adieu, my daughter watched 4 seasons of Selling Sunset and 17 seasons of a Canadian dance show with a singular plot line. She took to texting boredom beauties like "Sup, mom?" from the back seat of the car as I schlepped her to well, really...anyplace where there was anything for her to do. And I'm not even the slightest bit fazed. Knowing she will be sans electronics for 7 weeks somehow translates into carte blanche electronic use. I can't say goodbye to TikTok, and hello to Team Sing, fast enough. Sleepaway camp may be outdated, but at least it's where Snapchat streaks go to die. RIP.

4. You need to stop packing. Down to the wire, you will be labelling and stuffing things in pouches and pockets that your children will never find or need. This is a compulsion, a sickness of sorts, from which you will soon find relief. Take a deep breath, remove the emergency supply of ponytail holders and sticker beans from her knapsack, and remember, the greatest gift you are giving your offspring is the gift of sending them far, far from home. Give yourself a pat on the back and at least enough time to have a glass of rose before you start packing for Italy


5. And lastly, we all need some perspective. This is a blessing. The world is falling to shit -- and surely your child will survive without a color war outfit for every possible Portland weather pattern. Let the kids be kids away from the madness. Skinned knees are good for the soul!

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