My summers as a camper were spent running around wearing ‘baller shorts’ (oversized
basketball shorts), hanging out with my cabin mates and being all around unaware that another
half of camp of a different gender existed (for the most part :). The most stark memories I have
of boys at camp were the painfully awkward times that we would be lined up and paired with
a ‘date’ for ‘date night’. For five summers, my future husband was in the line of our ‘brother cabin’
that we were paired with, equally as oblivious to my existence. Though we were unaware, a lot
was unfolding, at least for me, that became an absolutely essential part of the foundation of our
relationship and our ability to love one another as we do.
In many ways, I think that the core of Laity Lodge Youth Camp, and the Foundation as a whole,
is relationships – relationships with others, with ourselves, and with God. My summers, and
beyond that, the relationships that were created during those summers are where I experienced
an intentionality and selflessness in love – attributed to God – that took my interactions with him
to a new depth. In this season of life, Bill (the husband) and I were separately learning the peace
and steadfastness that comes with having our identities rooted in Christ.
A few years later, when we were on staff at LLYC one summer, suddenly I wasn’t so blind to that
little dude who had been in the date night line for so many years (probably because he had grown
8 inches and put on 50 pounds and was a lot harder to overlook). As we began dating and now
in marriage, I am so thankful that we both had a shared foundation that had prepared us to value
similar things such as confidence and trust that embolden authenticity in one another and others
we interact with as well as intentionality focused on connection which results in deep relationships
where others feel known intimately and heard fully. Those are two of the things that are deeply
embedded in our relationship and that we want to, together, help draw out in others.
Because of our shared camp history we have consistently had an incredible community base that
also share in this understanding and are still part of our lives daily.
From some fellow LLYC’ers who are a part of our community that we do life with in San Antonio, to getting tostand beside one of my 6th grade cabin mates in her wedding in a few weeks, to the man that I get to share lifewith, I still consistently experience the depth and intentionality of this intentional and selfless love.