Hi, my name’s Becky and I wanted to write about how being a camp counselor actually did change my life. If anyone’s thinking about doing it then you should go for it, being a camp counselor could change your life too.
I come from London and I’m now studying Media at Edinburgh. To be honest, my family are quite well off and I’ve always been brought up to have everything I have ever wanted. I don’t think that it made me a very nice person particularly and if I look back on my behaviour at high school I’m pretty ashamed of myself. I only decided to do summer camp to annoy my Mum. She’d booked for the family to go on a round-the-world cruise for a month during the summer after I finished my A-Levels and I couldn’t think of anything worse than spending a month playing happy families. I decided applying to camp would be the one thing she would have to let me do. She thought I would hate it and really she knew why I was applying. That made me even more satisfied knowing it was probably driving her crazy.
I was so adamant to annoy my family that it wasn’t really until I was on the flight that I felt my first pangs of fear. I knew the camp was going to be full of people who were different to me but I knew the children of my camp were from rich families so that made me feel better. I also knew I’d be sleeping in a cabin, I had done so before but this one would have no log fire, sauna or big double bed. I had considered if things seemed too awful that I could always check into a hotel using my credit card and spend my summer in New York. I knew though that Mum didn’t think I would stick it out and that made me determined to do it. My friends at home all thought I was mad. They were spending their summers on yachts and the like, but I knew Mum would have made me do the cruise if I had asked to go with them. I hadn’t talked about it to them much in the end because they just laughed at me and made me feel stupid or worse – terrified.
Being a camp counselor changed my life
What happened though was an experience that did change my life. I didn’t like the cabins true, and at first I don’t think I was the nicest to a lot of the other camp counselors, but eventually I had to adapt. The more I threw myself into my new life the more I began to enjoy it. I stopped sending letters home to my friends and I loved it when I got a postcard off Mum. It made me feel homesick but in a nice way. The other camp counselors I worked with were some of the nicest people I had ever known. I couldn’t believe how different they were to my school friends and instead of competing with each other we worked together. We pretty much wore the same hoody and shorts all summer and without having to think about looking fashionable everyday I could think about other things which became more important to me. It made all my designer stuff at home seem pretty ridiculous.
Camp put my life into perspective
I still keep in touch with my old school friends and I still like the odd designer item but camp put so much into perspective for me. I promised myself I would never take my family for granted any more and I can’t believe I used to act like that. I’m getting on really well with Mum, she still drives me nuts but she loved my camp stories and we do things together now. The camp counselors I met that summer have remained some of my best friends. The whole summer opened my eyes and gave me the confidence to make friends with all sorts of people when I started uni. I feel like I turned a new leaf and I like who I am now so much better. Being a camp counselor might change your life in a less dramatic way but it could still change your life – you won’t find out how much unless you give it a go though!