I know how badly you miss your boys and the excitement you feel in anticipation of their arrival home tomorrow. Nothing can rival that first embrace, the rare time that your son may not pull away from you due to being embarrassed. The one hug when he pulls himself so close that you can feel his racing heartbeat against your chest. This is the moment that you have been waiting for, and it will happen within a few hours of reading this blog.
We are sending back a tired boy. It’s the kind of exhaustion one feels from running hard on the fields and courts all summer. The tired feeling comes from an extended sleepover when boys stay up laughing and talking until the wee hours of the evening. There will be tons of questions about his experience, but you must be patient. He might not be ready to share, not because he didn’t have an amazing experience, but rather because he just had the experience of his lifetime. He needs time to reconnect and reacclimatize with you and his siblings, his pet, and his room. He will be enamored by the ease with which he can go to the refrigerator. He’ll love the privacy of his own bathroom and his comfy couch. Let him settle in, and in time you will hear all about his summer. It may be during a meal, a few weeks from now when something triggers the memory, but rest assured, you will be filled in when he’s ready.
He has accomplished so much over the last seven weeks. Some accomplishments occur on the fields and courts, but the most important development he experienced is that he learned how to be more self-reliant. He developed a healthy sense of independence and became a better friend and teammate. Your son grew from his accomplishments and learned from his misgivings. He had the chance to run and laugh mask-free, to reconnect with friends and counselors, to use his words instead of his thumbs, and to communicate with eye contact rather than with an emoji. Thank you for your unwavering trust in what we do. It’s been my honor and great privilege to spend this summer with your amazing son.