Tuesday, February 15, 2011

sweet home ligonier

It is with great pleasure that I stand here before you, proclaiming that I attended summer camp from 5th grade through 9th grade. Yes, I was one of those kids. I even worked there one summer as a counselor-in-training (CIT) and that was arguably one of the best summers of my life:

Camper arrival day with my counselor and co-counselor!
Disclaimer: Those of you who have never been a camper will probably not be able to relate to this post. As confirmed by an NPR broadcast I heard a while back.

The CITs put on a skit for the campers for Night at the Theater. Yes, I was Death.
Ligonier Camp provided me a refuge away from the glares and sneers of my middle school peers at a time when I quite literally had no friends. Not 1. Zilch. Having suffered bouts of depression, anxiety, and the most intense perfectionism you will probably ever encounter in a six-year-old, Ligonier was the only thing I looked forward to during the year. It kept my focus during days when I had to walk down the halls by myself or heard the other kids making fun of me. It gave me hope. Not to mention it was incredibly fun and provided me with at least one relationship that has lasted to this day.

Tribe 11: My last summer as a camper. And it was my best summer as a camper.
It makes me sad when I think about the fact that I will probably never work at/obviously not be a camper at Ligonier ever again. In college I desperately tried to arrange my finances so that I could be a counselor, but unfortunately it just wasn't possible. Jon and I even considered spending our first married summer as counselors there, but decided that probably wasn't in the best interest of our marriage. I'm still holding out hope that maybe one day we could be camp directors, live on the property, and spend every waking second there. Jon said he would love that. I think he's telling the truth.

CITs rehearsing for our silly skit. Kitchen vs. KYBO (you wouldn't know unless you went to Ligonier)
For those of you who have kids of the summer camp age, I highly recommend sending them. Camp was a challenge, but still a blast, and the genuine relationships and learning about Christ that went on there were unmatched in my youth. What I would give to go back in time just to relive some of my fonder camp memories even for just an hour.

Team building exercises with the other CITs on our first day together.

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