Welcome Home PandaMae

Last year I went with my oldest daughter to Girl’s Camp.  Back then I thought it was for her.  I felt that it would make it easier for her to be away from the family for a whole week.

Let me explain, in the LDS Church many there is an organization for the teenage girls.  It is called the Young Women’s organization.  It’s primary focus is teaching the girls the gospel of Jesus Christ.  But the “young women” often learn life skills and have fun.

Each year as part of the learning about Christ, and having fun, and learning life skills, each local organization hosts a camp out.  It is simply called “Girl’s Camp.”  However, in our local church group, girls who are 13- and 14-years old have an extra opportunity to go to Oakcrest.

This camp is filled with crafts, hikes, games, and a night out under the stars.  there are lesson on life, religion, family, and more.  I have never been so I have only a small figurative peak at what they do, but from most girls I get nothing but rave reviews.

Well, if you follow my twitters, then you know that PandaMae left our home for week to go to Oakcrest.  She was very excited and couldn’t wait.

While I sensed some hesitation at the drop off, I knew that she was happy to go.

However, as I think it over, I suspect that the hesitation was mine.  I didn’t want her to go.  I miss my little girl.  Even though she is very quiet, and sometimes she can be in her room for hours and no one notice she is gone, something is different in our home.

Something is missing.

Today she comes back.  And I can’t wait to get home and see her.  I can’t wait to hear about her adventures.  See her pictures, and hopefully get a glimpse at a testimony that has grown.

It’s funny.  My wife is the one who can’t stand the thought of our children growing up and leaving the house.  I often comment on how much I can’t wait tell all the birds have flown the coop.  Yet, it is my wife who has been stellar.  She seldom comments on PandaMae’s absence.  While I don’t think a day has gone by without my mentioning her as gone.

I will probably be the won crying at her wedding too.

Reflecting back to last year, and to the hesitation at the drop off for Oakcrest.  I think that it is me who is more worried about these adventures.  My little girl that used to wake me up with her respiratory alarm at 3 months, the little girl who used to ride her big wheel in the balcony of our apartment, the little girl who used to think that I could fix anything including the credit card in the 3.25″ floppy drive is not my little girl any more.

She’s my big little girl now.

Welcome home PandaMae, I hope you had a fun time.