YIA- Pastiche Summer Camp, UK- Mother of 9 for 12 days (I)

Thank You, GOD! We survived!

I am after 15 hours of sleep. The nightmare is over.

I woke-up in tears. It is already usual for me. In the last ten days happened every single morning.

Because I experienced, in the hard way, how to be a poor, helpless mother of 9 living in a cynical world.

Yes, mother of 9… three of 15 years old, one of 16, one that just made his 17 during the camp, one of 18, one of 19 … and my own son, 28 years old- and also the only reliable adult from the area, that I counted on.

We made a huge effort to participate at Pastiche Summer Camp in UK… and we were so glad that we succeeded to be ready to go there! Kids and parents made all their best for that. My underage kids were so anxious about their language skills, about how to behave appropriately when they will be abroad, were so curious about the new food that they will get there, about how they will interact with the tent colleagues from other countries… They wanted to know the rules earlier, so they would adapt faster to the camp life… The camp had to be about anti-discrimination!

So ironic!

During the camp, their major challenges were not any of the above. They performed at the highest level during workshops. All the workshop leaders had only good words about them.

The day-by day challenges were those about how to get enough food. And about how to make yourself a warm shelter to sleep. And how to accept that all the clothes and shoes you wear are wet and if you wash them you need 3-4 days to drain the water from them.

All in all, it was about survival.

I left for the camp as youth leader, determined to help them to perform at their maximum level, because I knew how much they can, each of them. 48 hours later I became a single mother struggling to save her children.

Yes, now I KNOW MORE about being a poor mother of 9… Now I understand why she will be –physically and emotionally- a mess all the time. Now I know that she will not be patient, nice, or friendly with others… And I understand why she will be all the time too harsh, too grumpy, too discontent and too repulsive with her own children and she will always find reasons to yell at them or punish them. Because she has no solution for their problems so she MUST make them go away. It would be too painful to tell them all the time that she is powerless and to stand in front of them crying often.

Been there, lived that.

At least we had some money from home (but not enough to get the hell outa’ there), to solve the food issue by our own. But what if we would not have them? Or what if we would not have from where to buy food? Probably they would follow the example of other kids there and we would steal food when the organizers were not at the “kitchen”…Nice educational environment, ha?

At least, all my kids were strong enough to not give up. I am so proud of that!

For me, I only wish that there will be not unwanted long term consequences for my kids and all this nightmare will disappear as soon as possible in the mists of oblivion.

And I wish that a morning will come soon when I will not wake up in tears. But I know that this will be not possible until I will tell the whole story.

Bye! Take care!

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