Thursday, 1 November 2018

His First Camp, My Last Camp.


My youngest set off to camp yesterday!




We packed literally at the eleventh hour the night before (well, I did.) He crashed out legs askew on the couch after two episodes of Fresh Prince of Bel Air, the latest Netflix show we watch together. I've never see it before, it's quite funny - nice and clean and innocent, you know? No swearing or overt sexuality ... these days you see your kids watching a cartoon and think ok that's cool and then find out how utterly filthy it is. I'm not even being a prude, these shows make Southpark look like the Brady Bunch. I was a fan of Ren and Stimpy back in the day (remember one of them fell in love with their fart and wanted to marry it - yes that was a bit off but nothing like now.)

Rocco and his friends are *right* on the cusp of wanting to get facebook and instagram, makes my heart sink a little because they're still young and fresh and innocent when it comes to memes and hashtags and the cluttered debris of the internet. It changes them, I've seen it happen with all my kids as they grow up. It's overloading and too big for little humans minds.

Yeah the internet is great for information and knowledge, the speed of news, education, etc ... but it scares the absolute shit out of me so I choose to still stay on the internet. In it.. like a silent subversive hall monitor. Until the big blackout comes and everybody buys walkie talkies, cases of water, grabs their dogs and kids and go live someplace quiet and beautiful, plant things, live off the land.

Maybe that's how we are supposed to live all along.

I'm standing there at Rocco's school early yesterday morning  and there were excited little faces every direction you turned. It's a rite-of-passage, your first school camp. Mine was back in 1983 at Bundeena where I full pashed a boy for the first time. It was so disgusting I spent the rest of the camp ignoring him. So much spit! Sorry Rodney.

There's this other thing I've done since all my children have gone through their schools. I wait at assembly, or look around at concerts or special days ands look at all those precious kids doing what they do: jostling, faux fighting, laughing at things that aren't funny but then I always look past that, try to read their faces if they are ok. How's things at home? Is there violence, are they getting enough food and attention and love. I worry about and for them, if they're dragging their feet or running carefree. Sounds weird but I do say a prayer for them (in my mind not out loud, ha.)

Like one of my own sons said to me back when he was in year 6, "Mum I would HATE to be gay."

When I asked why he said that, he simply answered with such a truth it made me tear up. "Because you'h have to hide it."

Can't wake to pick him up tomorrow afternoon. They're all going to be a huge bunch of overtired, stinky, possibly a bit sunburnt bunch of beautiful children, pouring off the bus with legendary camp stories. They've tasted freedom from their parents for possibly the first time in their lives, instead experiencing living with their peers for three days in a row. No funny GIPH or newest You Tube video or choosing a new team in Fortnite ... just real and good and funny old-fashioned FUN.




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