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I thought I would start out my blog writing about my son. You see he left today (Sunday) at 3:00 this afternoon for Bethel Horizons camp. He will be there until Friday at noon with a bus full of kids.
He couldn't take his cell phone. So no contact with Mom or Dad. I asked him if it would be okay if I wrote him a letter. He didn't know if that would be too freaky. I said that I was just going to write to him about news from home. After a while, he thought that it would be okay, if I wanted to.
I went to Girl Scout camp for two weeks in Antigo WI. It stormed every dang night. My friend and tent roommate, Diane & I zipped our sleeping bags together out of pure fear for our lives.

My mom sent a letter and I got it on the bus ride home. I read it 100 times. My friend Kim cried all the way home because her mom didn't send her one. I let her read mine.
I think Dylan will be okay because he went to day camp for Vacation Bible School. He came home every day at 5:00 o'clock. The first day he came home with a frog. He was so excited. Our fearless leader, Jacqui, got off of the bus carrying it in a bag, all the way home from Dodgeville. What a trooper!
Jacqui asked me to have a talk with Dylan. Please tell him NOT to bring home any creatures from camp. It was not appreciated. I assured her that he is a really good kid and that he always listens to us and he won't be bringing anything home but himself.
Guess what happened the very next day? Yes, this time he snuck it home in his water bottle. Barf! Again, Jacqui was the transportation for this lily pad. Jacqui got off the bus first, and I was shocked by the look on her face. He did it again! I apologized again, and I was upset with Dylan.
When we got in the car I was like, I told you about this yesterday. What happened? He said, Mom, but I wanted it so bad! I said, I know, but maybe the frog wanted to stay with his family in the pond. And now he will be some animals snack in the bushes. He was really quiet and I could tell he thought about it all the way home. He decided he wouldn't take anymore frogs from their family again.
Now that he is a little older, I hope that he remembers his promise. He loves to scare me with bugs.
Dylan is my oldest daughter, Michelle's son. We adopted her and her sister Katie when she was one and a half and Katie was 8 months.

Their Mom and Dad were addicted to drugs and alcohol. Their mom was murdered later in their childhood in California by an undercover police officer and their dad went to prison for robbery. Michelle has been diagnosed with borderline personality disorder. She also has addictions. The doctors said that they can't help her, but we never stop praying.
We had no idea of the extent of her issues when she was young and we made a lot of mistakes when we were raising her and had to forgive ourselves for not knowing that she was not being a naughty child when she was really mentally ill. We did the best that we could under the circumstances.
We took her to anyone and everyone that could help her but to no avail.
What we didn't predict or plan for, is that she would have children. Why not? We were looking at other issues. So when she got pregnant with Dylan we could see early on that we had to step in and break her heart.
Could we take on that big of task? At our age of 42, starting over? Would he go down the same road as Michelle?  Maybe if we got him into sports and music he could turn out okay. One day at a time. We are much wiser parents. Are we better than we were? Do we get a second chance to do a better job? Can we stop the cycle of violence, drugs and alcohol and change his family tree?
When I asked him if he wanted to go to camp last year, he was ready and willing. I asked Lindsey, one of the amazing camp directors at Bethel Horizons, what they do for kids that get homesick. She said that they deal with it. I said, you call the parents then? She said no, we deal with it. We decided he couldn't go.
This year I asked him again if he wanted to go and he said YES! My friend Sue gave me a little MOM pep talk. She told me that he will be more well-rounded, and able to take risks and take care of himself better. That we both would be okay. I think she meant me and my ex-husband! Rats!
Will they know that he jumps in my bed when it storms out? If they tell a spooky story he will be freaky scared all night? Do they know not to feed him peanuts? Okay, I told them. And I sent the epipen! Stay calm.
He told his Dad that he was really going to miss him. And I know he meant it. He gave me a hug inside the building, away from the other campers. I hope that it lasts me until Friday.

Someday soon I hope his Mom, Michelle comes home for a visit and sees how beautiful he has become. We both miss her and love her and hope that she is healthy and loved by her husband. It's been one year and two months since we talked to her...please come home.


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You are simply an amazing mom, Penny. Thank you for sharing.

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