This weekend the children's Scout group had a camp. The Beavers - A - went on Friday evening, went to Duxford on Saturday, then came home Saturday afternoon. The Cubs - J - and Scouts - M - were dropped off on Friday evening and picked up on Sunday afternoon. At least that was the plan . . .
First order was packing.
A was no trouble at all. She was really buzzing - it was her first night away from home. I asked her to go and find the bits and off she went - all I did was make sure it was all there and pack the bag.
M needed a bit more prodding. He finds some clothes intolerable, so packing for him needed to be a bit more supported. He also has trouble remembering more than three things at a time - so he went up to his room a lot more times ;) We managed to pull together three days of clothes he was pretty sure he could wear (what he can tolerate varies depending on how stressed he is.) The bag was huge, adding an airbed didn't help!
J. Well, what can I say? Last year there was a disastrous incident for J. He went to camp as a not quite invested cub. He was in the same section as M, but hadn't been for long. This was his first camp - the Beavers call them sleepovers and they are only one night. He had coped OK with the one nighters. Somehow this was different. Perhaps it was just too much all at one time - Uncle N had been visiting, and he was going home after J was dropped off. L and J's Dad were going with Uncle N to go to a gaming convention.
Whatever the reason, about three hours after J was dropped off (last year), when his Dad (and the car) were well and truly out of reach J melted down completely. The leaders called me and I could hear J wailing and screaming in the background. By then he'd been going for over an hour. So they brought him home.
The next two days were tough - L and his father weren't due back until Sunday afternoon. M was to be picked up on Monday. J wanted to be with me at all times - holding on as if he thought I was going to disappear. There were lots of tears, a few screams, and a very claustrophobic weekend for me.
J flatly refused to even think about going to camp for a long time, but in July when we picked A up from a day camp he noticed things he wished he had been able to try. His "no" was softening. When the discussions about this weekend came up, he wanted to go - so we booked and paid for the camp for him. Then (once we'd said yes) he was less sure. We had lots of surface worries - little things that were masking the real issue. We had lots and lots of long conversations, but in the end J didn't go.
When we dropped M and A off the Beaver leader said to me that she was totally different to M and J . . . I thought "Well, yes. She's NT", but that's not the sort of thing you can say out loud really.
I was pretty sure she would cope fine, and I was right. She had a great time, and was perfectly happy when she got home.
I wasn't sure how M would cope - he hasn't been away from home much, and not since his night terrors became such a big thing. As we dropped him off he was clingy - not helped by the fact that A had to be dropped off half an hour after him, so basically we all sat around doing very little for ages. M yo-yoed between us and the Scouts, not seeming happy or settled. When it was time for A to go in she bounded in without even saying goodbye to me :)
So the camp happened. The kids are now home, and everyone is happy :)