Summer Camp Saved My Life

Summer Camp Saved My Life

In my life, I have had the opportunity to be a camper and also be a counselor which has given me so many beautiful memories, friends, and life lessons.

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At the age of eleven, I was introduced to the camping experience by a dear friend of mine named Emily. Little did the eleven-year-old version of myself know how much she would need camp. Prior to being a camper and later working at a summer camp, I had no idea what real Christian community looked like and Camp Glisson gave me that community.

As my parents drove under the canopy of trees and my first day of camp began my whole body trembled. Being only eleven years old I had so may thoughts of fear and excitement running through my mind. This place filled with such warm smiles from strangers who did not even know my name calmed my fears in an instant. One memory that sticks out in my mind like a neon sign is my first time participating in singing on the porch. This consists of the whole camp being led in song and singing or screaming to be more honest, to songs like Country Roads. This experience made me glow with joy for the rest of the week. This time became what I looked forward to every day. After such a heartwarming experience, I came back to camp every summer up until my final summer as a camper which was my senior year.

Working at a summer camp later as a sixteen and seventeen years old allowed me to further experience this idea of a Christian community. Glisson has a sister program called ELI which allows raising juniors and seniors to be summer camp counselors. This program shocks me to my core. I participated in it for both years and I would have to credit who I am today to that program. My fellow counselors and the people leading me made me feel so at home and taught me many life lessons.

One week during ELI summer of 2017 I was stationed at Midway UMC in Auburn Georgia and I felt like my whole world collapsing on me. My campers told me they hated me and I thought I was the worst counselor in the history of the camp. One day the pressure from it all got the best of me and I snapped. These kids who I cared for so deeply just did not show love the same way I expected. In a hallway in the church, I fell to my knees sobbing. A sweet friend of mine came to my rescue and using magic words he somehow got my campers to enjoy camp. As I sat on the floor in a puddle of my own tears, I remember thinking how blessed I was to have people who could come to my rescue. This community allowed me to lean on them in times of need and also be a safe place to go and recharge.

This community is a safe haven from the outside world. Summer camp through its collection of people showed me how loved I am, that I am worth so much more than my appearance, and that the right people either find you or you find them. When I was on a bus believe it or not is when one of these right people found me. We had the chance to talk and realized how much we had in common. We became attached at the hip the rest of the summer. Even when we were separated we channeled our inner 1980 and called each other on landlines. The distance could not break what a strong friendship we built in such a small time period. Even to this day, I love him to mars and back. Making genuine friends like that allowed me to block out the negative lies I had been told by outside forces.

The picture above forever holds a special place in my heart because that place gave me my two favorite people in this world. The girl on the far left is my best friend of fourteen years. She is my rock and without her, I would have never had the courage to be myself. The girl second to the left is me. The boy third to the left is the boy I met on a bus. While we have only been friends for a short time he has come to play a vital role in my life. I got to be in between my two best friends and that is all thanks to camp.

Summer camp saved my life. If it was those people and the friendships I have been blessed with I don't know where I would be today. Now as I leave my days as a camper behind I walk into this world trying to show others like me and different from me, the values I gained at camp.

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5 Perks Of Having A Long-Distance Best Friend

The best kind of long-distance relationship.
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Sometimes, people get annoyed when girls refer to multiple people as their "best friend," but they don't understand. We have different types of best friends. There's the going out together best friend, the see each other everyday best friend and the constant, low maintenance best friend.

While I'm lucky enough to have two out of the three at the same school as me, my "low maintenance" best friend goes to college six hours from Baton Rouge.

This type of friend is special because no matter how long you go without talking or seeing each other, you're always insanely close. Even though I miss her daily, having a long-distance best friend has its perks. Here are just a few of them...

1. Getting to see each other is a special event.

Sometimes when you see someone all the time, you take that person and their friendship for granted. When you don't get to see one of your favorite people very often, the times when you're together are truly appreciated.

2. You always have someone to give unbiased advice.

This person knows you best, but they probably don't know the people you're telling them about, so they can give you better advice than anyone else.

3. You always have someone to text and FaceTime.

While there may be hundreds of miles between you, they're also just a phone call away. You know they'll always be there for you even when they can't physically be there.

4. You can plan fun trips to visit each other.

When you can visit each other, you get to meet the people you've heard so much about and experience all the places they love. You get to have your own college experience and, sometimes, theirs, too.

5. You know they will always be a part of your life.

If you can survive going to school in different states, you've both proven that your friendship will last forever. You both care enough to make time for the other in the midst of exams, social events, and homework.

The long-distance best friend is a forever friend. While I wish I could see mine more, I wouldn't trade her for anything.

Cover Image Credit: Just For Laughs-Chicago

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15 Summer Jobs For The Person That Doesn’t Want To Sit At A Desk Or Work In Fast Food

School is soon coming to a close, and so are our jobs that we work during the school year.

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School is soon coming to a close, and so are our jobs that we work during the school year. If you are like me, then sitting at a desk or being trapped inside for forty hours a week sounds like hell. But do not fret, I have compiled a list of fifteen fun jobs that will keep you active and engaged all summer long…

1. Swim Instructor

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While it might seem like you have to be an insanely talented swimmer to become a swim instructor/lifeguard, it is a lot easier than you think. You just have to complete a few simple tasks that most people that are in good health will be able to carry out easily. For more information on the specific requirements, check out this website: https://americanpool.com/services/pool-management-services/red-cross-lifeguard-training/

2. City Tour Guide

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Are you from a town that fills with tourists during the summer? If so, this may be the perfect job for you! You will be able to walk around and tell people about the town that you grew up in. Easy peasy and great exercise! Plus, you can soak up the sun while getting paid. If you visit Indeed.com there will be tons of resources to find guide jobs.

3. Camp Counselor

www.camplaurel.com

If you love kids, this is the job for you! You will be able to play outside and hang out with kids all day. Many camp counseling jobs also include housing and food, because of this you have the possibility to travel to a new place and be a counselor there.

4. Dog Walker

www.cesarsway.com

Being a dog walker is now easier than ever. With all of the new apps hitting the market, you can be a dog walker in minutes. Apps like Rover and Wag create a platform where you can connect with dogs all over whatever city you are in. You can pick a walking job as easy as you can pick up an Uber, plus you can choose your own hours!

5. Plant Nursery Worker

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If you're like me and absolutely love plants, then this is the place for you. You can be outside, with plants, playing in the dirt. It doesn't get much better than that. Go out and find your local plant nursery. You won't regret spending for summer with the flowers! That's for sure.

6. Farmers Market Worker

www.evergreen.ca

Health food, produce, and pottery! Oh My! Snag a job at your local Farmers Market. Whether that be at manning a booth or managing the event as a whole, your days will be filled with fun and energy all day! Not to mention the discounts that you can get!

7. Amusement Park Worker

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Live your childhood dream and work at an amusement park! If you live in a capital city, odds are that there is an amusement park to work at. Not only do you get to work in a super fun environment, but you can soak up the sun while doing it!

8. Babysitting

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Maybe you don't want to commit a whole summer to camp counseling, but you still love kids. You're in luck! Babysitting is a great option for you. Flexible hours and you can work anywhere. Apps like Busy Bees can even help you find jobs in your area.

9. National Park Worker

www.backpacker.com

Are you a nature person inside and out? Then being a national park worker is perfect for you. Not only do you get to spend every day in the most beautiful environments, but you also get to have full access to the park on your off days for all of the roaming that your heart desires.

10. Zoo Worker

www.zoo.org.au

Every child's dream is to be able to be at the zoo all the time. Now you can! You can work at your local zoo during the summer. There are tons of jobs that you can do, from a dip and dots cashier to a sea lion feeder. The opportunities are endless!

11.  Hiking Guide

www.selkirkexperience.com

Get your summer bikini bod while you are at work! For all of you avid hikers, this is right down your ally. You can hike all day AND get paid to do it. Name a more wonderful duo. I'll wait…

12.  Landscaping

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If you have an eye for design and a desire to get a little extra vitamin D, this job will certainly brighten up your summer. Tons of landscaping companies need more hands during the summer demand for landscape. Get in contact with your local companies and see if they have a spot for you!

13.  Freelance Writing

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Advance your career and get paid to work flexible hours? HECK YEAH! Calling all writers. This may be the job for you. Freelance writing is a great option to have complete freedom and also get paid to do what you love while sitting in a bikini by the pool.

14.  Wrangler

Cowboy, horses, dusty Park Butte Trail, Mount Baker Wilderness, Washington, USA.

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Giddy on up and get you a job as a horse wrangler. Many homesteads and ranchers need more wranglers during the summer. Many summer camps even have these jobs available. If you are looking to spend your summer riding off into the sunset, then this is just right for you!

15.  WWOOF

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Last, but certainly not least is WWOOF. WWOOF is an international company that is looking for people who desire to travel but need housing and a job as well. They are a company that will get you a job at a local organic farm and provides you housing for your work. So this summer if you want to travel, but not break the bank, this is a LIFESAVER.

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