Alone in a house of boys.

We have 2 daughters. They are small and young and sweet and cute. Sorry, correction. We had 2 daughters. They are gone now. Gone, because we sent them away. 

That's right. We sent our daughters to summer camp.

At this point, I don't even remember what I was thinking with that. I guess it was something like "my daughters really want to go to camp, and now they are old enough to go to camp". But actually, only the oldest REALLY wanted to go, the younger one was unsure at first, and then talked herself into it, because apparently, in this family, the monkeys see and then they do.

And at the beginning, I thought it would be great. I thought they would have some amazing experiences, plus I would get a bit of a break from a couple of ladies who have spent this summer forgetting how to follow simple instructions. Win win, probably.

And we dropped them off. I mean, we actually drove all the way up there to drop them off instead of letting them ride up in the van like all the other kids. And I thought they'd be nervous, but... they were fine. We got them to their cabin, they found the other kids, and basically turned around to say goodbye. They. were. fine.

But now they're not fine.
The daughters I used to have, before I let them grow up too fast and go away to camp.

I mean, okay, I don't know that they're not fine. Like, technically, I have no idea how they're doing. But at the same time, I know they are not fine.

I just... do. Like, I know Madelyn has fallen back into her prepubescent crisis from a couple weeks ago wherein she assumes all kids are now judging her and think she is terrible. And I know Catelyn is stuck in her "I say weird things" thing that she was worried about, and probably the other girls think she came on a little strong and now no one wants to be her friend. And they miss their family desperately, and they're so lonely, and they're not even taking good care of each other. It isn't fun anymore. It is depressing and lonely and scary and far far longer than they expected it to be.
Masking their pain with silliness.

At least, it's far far longer than I expected.

So, okay, maybe I'm the one who isn't coping so great. I mean I started off pretty good this week. I've cleaned house. I've done my work. I've cooked meals. I've gotten back on my diet and exercised daily. I replaced a broken toilet seat. I took the boys to the library and out for ice cream. I bought an Instant Pot. But then we got to like, 3 days in, and I'm anxious and I'm tired. So maybe tired is the problem. Because I am completely and entirely convinced that the girls are miserable, and that I broke their tiny, fragile spirits by sending them off to camp when they weren't ready.

Oh, and there's this other part of this. What I HAVE gotten to do is spend extra time with my boys this week. But that turned out to be less fun than expected. Turns out boys are stinky and feral, and when you take all the girliness out of your home, you're just left with wrestling and farts and refusing to use a napkin. And none of that is as cute as it sounds.

In fairness, I had no idea this would be so hard on me. And my husband may or may not be avoiding me entirely because I've become annoying. But now all I can think is, is this parenting now? Do the kids reach toward their preteen years and suddenly life is just a series of experiments with sending your children into the world, hoping they don't fail, that they're nice and good and also protected from anyone who isn't, and dwelling on all the ways you failed to prepare them for the world, and then just like, never ever sleeping again? 

Because frankly, I got into parenting for the cute squishy baby stage. I don't think I'm up for this.

And if all this makes you look at me and say holy cow psychopath, overprotective much? Then please pause and remember that you already know I homeschool my kids. Scroll up to the actual title of this whole blog. You know I'm overprotective, and you know I'm basically a nutter. Old. Fracking. News. So ha. 

Checkmate.

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