A New Kind of Energy

13438973_10101373539749365_1601697436517481269_nBy Hayley Harrington, Summer Camp Apache Cabin Counselor
Summer camp staff have one of the hardest jobs in the world: making sure that every parent’s most prized creation has an amazing time away from home. Our jobs get even harder when we have to reset every two weeks and recreate the magic for a new group of campers. The impossible task seems to be giving session four a session one; we have already spent at least seven weeks preparing for this group of campers. New staff have more confidence, and returning staff have fallen back into the rhythm that makes camp run smoothly. We work tirelessly around the clock, and exhaustion begins to set in. How do we continue to keep the energy up when all we want to do is take naps? How do we continue to create magic every single day of the summer?
We find a new kind of energy. This sort is seldom found anywhere else in the world other than summer camp. Our energy comes from nothing other than the love of campers. There is nothing more powerful than the unconditional love of children, because for two or four or more weeks, we become the biggest influences in their lives. The collateral exhaustion that comes with our jobs is nothing in comparison to the gratitude received when a child comes to you and thanks you for learning a new skill. When we reflect on our days during cabin chat, there is nothing more powerful than hearing that the best part of a camper’s day was an activity we led or a time we went out of our ways to make a child happy. When we say “the campers come first”, we are not saying it because we do not want to put ourselves first, but because we, as staff, have that new kind of energy. We love what we do because we love our campers more than anything. Regardless of when in the summer our children arrive, we want to show them the world.
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