Sleeping away

My baby is going to sleepaway camp.

He’s not a baby anymore. He’s 10, and that’s plenty old enough to go to camp for a week, away from me.

He sleeps at his dad’s house three or four nights a week, away from me. And goes on a trip to see his dad’s family for a few weeks every summer, away from me. He went on a week-long train trip with my mom in the spring, away from me.

But this feels different.

He’s going to the same camp I went to for four years when I was a kid, with the same director of the camp. (Same director! Since the 80s!) And it turns out one of my friends from camp is now the assistant director of the camp. So I know he’ll be taken care of. And I know the food is good, and he’ll be safe in his cabin, and he’ll learn a lot, and they won’t let him get any melanoma-level sunburns, and he’ll get bitten by mosquitos, and he’ll be happy to see me when I pick him up.

But it feels like a big step.

I think it’s a bigger step for me than it is for him. He’s excited, not scared. I’m excited for him, but a little scared. Of what, I’m not sure. That he’ll need me and I won’t be there? Or that he’ll have experiences I’m not having?

This is letting go. I’m trying to make sure I’m letting go fast enough that he doesn’t notice me still holding on, so he can run off without looking back.



Magda Pecsenye writes about parenting at and about co-parenting after divorce with her ex-husband at When The Flames Go Up.

Follow her on Twitter at @AskMoxie and join the AskMoxie Facebook page.


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