Like every other kid across the country, my 7-year-old son is counting down the days until school lets out for the summer. (Yes, we're still in session up here in the boonies of Connecticut.)
And his elation isn't necessarily due to the fact that first grade is almost over, it's because it means it's finally time for him to go back to summer camp -- his favorite thing in the whole world. This will be his fourth year attending the same day camp he's been to in past summers, but for one week in July, I'm also putting him in a specialty camp where he'll learn all about marine life -- his second favorite thing in the whole world.
And earlier today, I received an email with the itinerary for this particular camp, and I've been in a semi-major state of panic ever since. Deep breaths -- the kids will be taking a couple of field trips, one of which is about an hour away.
Did you hear me? An HOUR (or maybe a little more) away. Which means my little 7-year-old will be traveling on a bus -- on the highway -- and arriving at a location that is an entire hour outside of my comfort zone. (I'm nauseated.)
Sure, he's been on a few field trips before, but never one that was more than 20 or 30 minutes down the road.
And I trust the camp staff and I know they're perfectly capable of taking care of my kid, but still -- the thought of him traveling that far away from me on a BUS has me more than a little freaked out.
I'm not ashamed to admit that for a brief second, I thought maybe I'd made a mistake in putting him in that camp in the first place, and I thought about canceling his registration simply to put my fears at ease. But then I thought about how devastated he would be, and the fact that he's 7 now, not 4 or 5 -- which means it's about time for me to suck it up and cut the cord already.
I'll probably be a total basket case from the moment I drop him off and he boards that bus, but this experience is good for him -- and I know it's essential for developing his independence. And besides that, he's going to have an absolute blast exploring, learning, and having fun this summer -- away from his Mommy.
If I don't let go, how can I ever expect him to?
(But I think I'll make it a point to put a bottle of wine in the fridge that morning so I can pop it open as soon as he gets home. I know I'm going to need it.)
Do you get nervous about your kids going on field trips?
Image via bsabarnowl/Flickr