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Lessons from Hardships at Summer Camp

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Hey, Camp Folks!

Happy to see so many great entries about kids’ camp experience for our ‘Share Your Camp Story’ Contest that we held here at Everything Summer Camp. So, we’re posting each of your entries here on the Blog! Following our ten lucky winners who got larger prizes, the rest of our entrants received a $15 gift certificate to our online store!

Today’s post is from Mira S., whose trip wasn’t quite what she dreamed it would be. Here’s what she had to say: 

“Camp isn’t all about fun and happy times. It’s about the lessons you learn along the way. Before I came to camp, I watched a video of many people making friends and trying new activities. I was dazed afterwards and I wanted summer to take me away to camp. Before I knew it, summer was here and I was at camp! But, I was two weeks in and desperate to make some friends. It was hard. I had people I loved back home and the people in my cabin weren’t so nice to me. I had emotional times, and I mean a lot of them. A couple of my bunkmates were negatively commenting on my outfits, my stuff and the things I said. From that point forward, I realized that camp isn’t always what you dreamed it’s going to be, it’s going to require some work. Just like life, there are challenges along the way and I had to decide what paths to take. While camp wasn’t the experience I was hoping for, I did make friends (of course!), and I was homesick at the same time because of how people treated me. I’m not a person who really likes to speak up for my own needs. At one point in time, I felt like I needed to tell the counselors about what was happening in my cabin but I never did. Maybe I should’ve. But I realized, I cannot let a couple of kids mess up my whole day or my whole experience, no one can have that much power over me. So instead, I immersed myself into the activities and focused on the new friends I did make.

Next summer, I’ve decided to go back to camp (despite my experiences the first year). Why? Because I’m hopefully of the opportunities to make new friends with new bunkmates and give myself a second chance to reconnect with the camp; just like in the real world where you are faced with challenges and not dream-like experiences. Towards the end of camp, I reflected at what I did at camp and realized that it was so fun and maybe I didn’t connect with all my bunkmates but I did connect with a couple good friends and most importantly, I did love how all the activities pushed me to reach my mental and physical goals. Next year I hope I can make more friends and feel confident in myself to speak up when I’m in a hard situation.”


You’re right, Mira. Having fun and being happy isn’t all there is to summer camp. I’m glad you could take the hardships from your experience this year and, not only learn and grow from them, but give camp another chance in the coming season. That shows true bravery and growth—especially with this year being your first. You have a very mature outlook on summer camp and your fellow campers as well. I hope your next stay can make up for all this year’s shortcomings. Thanks for sharing with us.


- John

1 comment

  • I really enjoyed your story and I’m so glad you had the courage to rise above the negative bunkmates! You handled yourself like a pro and learned a great life lesson. You’re not letting a few negative Nellies prevent you from going to camp again for more wonderful experiences. There will be other situations throughout your life that will require you to find your inner strength and do what’s best for you. Best of luck with your future endeavors and never stop exploring nature!

    Julie Adrian on

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