Friday, June 19th 2015
FOMO. For those who do not know what it means, FOMO stands for Fear Of Missing Out. It can also be described as experiencing jealously. We’re writing to you with a severe case of FOMO this Friday afternoon, as we are reminded on social media that campers’ bags are being picked up by Camps and staff orientation starts today (if not a few days ago) at most summer camps.
Chelsea shares: Between my older sister and I, my mother packed (and as we got older we helped) for summer camp for 15 years. Every June my mom would uncover our black duffel bags from the attic and give them a few days in the sun room to “air out”. (I don’t know why that was significant or how it would ever erase the pungent smell of camp). Nonetheless after a few summers packing up for my older sister, by the time my summer camp debut came along she had packing down to a science.
As I got older we’d go through the list thoroughly like the camp veterans we were, did I really need to pack rollerblades that summer? Was I ever going to actually use them? And we’d always revaluate what I needed more of, from the summers past (you can never have too many pairs of socks). While official camp packing starts about a month before bags are picked up it really hits you the final few days.
I’ll never forget the thrill, stress, and excitement of bringing all the other “camp stuff” together the night before the bags were being picked up. Grabbing my tennis racquet out of the garage, trying to squeeze the huge fan into the smallest compartments, and grabbing last minute toys and games for the bunk. In the final hours of packing I could finally feel camp creeping up around the corner. At this point my mom was yelling at me since I forgot to bring something like beach towels down from upstairs, but I didn’t care since though I was physically present, my mind was already miles ahead of me in Maine.
I recently asked if my mom was upset we weren’t packing up for camp this week. We both laughed because it was obviously a more stressful experience for her. However, we’ll get nostalgic when next Saturday will be the official start of camp, and we’ll be home in Connecticut instead of at the bus stop in Rye, New York. Now that’s the day where all the alumni, such as myself, feel VERY FOMO.
Jill shares: nostalgia; memories. As a parent I really, really miss this. Seeing friends and parents post photos of their campers’ trunks being picked up leaves a bittersweet pit in my stomach. The past several days no matter what apartment building I visited in Manhattan, trunks lined the lobbies (with camp names I could spell in my sleep). All I can do is smile, teary-eyed. I remember my secret packing methods passed onto my sister and her kids; the thank you’s from counselors when they saw me visiting day for being so organized. The love notes I packed in special spots so when my kids went to wear something, they’d find a special message I sent them. And you know, they remember all of this too.
When the trunks go, camp is really here. School is over. The true countdown to the best days of your children’s lives really begins.