I was never a boy scout so I’m lacking formal instruction in being prepared for whatever life brings me. Logan is going to church camp next week for the first time. On the way to summer daycare this morning, Logan and I reviewed what we needed to pack. I told him what was on the official camp packing list and began listing items I needed to buy him. Logan began asking about other items he thought he might need. He asked about his mp3 player, kindle, and family photographs. He agreed that none of these were necessities. However, he insisted he would need a bear repellent bell, mosquito net, duct tape, and a fire starter. I assume these “necessities” are based on our family addition to the TV show “Naked and Afraid,” but highly doubt any of the items are needed for a 3 day church camp.
Logan’s efforts to prepare for camp, reminds me of my preparation for camp when I was younger. The tradition at our camp led the older boys to raid the older girls’ campsites for bras to string up the flagpole. I was determined that none of my bras or panties would be captured so I prepared by stuffing my underwear into empty toothpaste boxes and an extra canteen. I even stuffed some of my underwear into a sock and shoved the sock into the hole in a tree near our tent. I went to great lengths to prevent my underwear from being on display. Unfortunately in my thorough preparations I was so focused on securing my underwear, that I failed to pack enough socks and had completely forgotten shampoo.
Often preparation looks different based on priorities. For example, in preparation to have a friend over for dinner last night, I clean the bathroom counter and made dinner. Trey did do a considerable amount of cleaning but focused on straightening up his tile saw and cleaning leaves off the deck. My mom jokes about preparing for a dinner party by cleaning while my dad prepared by alphabetizing his albums. i remember another time when my mom was stressing about cooking for a holiday meal while my dad created photo frame collages. Their marriage survived both situations and my marriage is intact following our dinner preparations.
While Trey and I were in agreement in preparations for the birth of Logan, we had different focuses before Jack’s arrival. I was stressed about the logistics of pumping breast milk upon returning to work. I proposed the idea of buying a small cooler for breast milk since I was going to have to pump in my car between school therapy clients and home visits. Trey almost hugged me when I made that suggestion. I was excited by his enthusiasm and thanked him for being so in sync with my desire to breast feed as long as possible. A couple of weeks later, he came home with a “present” for me. To aid in my breast pumping plan, Trey had purchased a giant Yeti cooler. I looked at the broad smile on my husband’s face and promptly accused him of buying the cooler he wanted rather than the cooler I needed. How much breast milk did he think I could produce in a work day!? He argued that he’d bought the cooler because it would keep the breast milk cool until I got home and that the cooler was bear proof. What a sweet man!? Thank you, Trey, for protecting me from those darn bears that break into cars to steal breast milk. When my milk dried up and I was no longer able to pump, I was disappointed. Trey soothed me by thanking me for breast-feeding as long as I had and reminded me that no matter what, we still had a giant bear-proof cooler. After all, Trey was a boy scout so he knows how to always be prepared. Perhaps I ought to have Trey help Logan pack for camp? Together they’d certainly be prepared to ward off any bears with the bear proof cooler and the bear repellent bell?