Before I start bawling again, I'd just like to reiterate that Spina Bifida Week was the hardest, worst, best, and most glorious week of all. It was my first week working with girls, even though I still never lived with any of the campers with which I was working. (Living in the Orange cabin without campers was pretty much amazing.)
Children with Spina Bifida generally need extensive assistance with personal care. This assistance may range from showering to dressing and even urinary/bowel support. Working with the oldest girls, nearly all of my campers were able to "cath" (insert urinary catheters to reduce effects of incontinence) themselves. Two campers needed assistence with their caths because they were located in the abdomen rather than inserted through the urethra. Of the remaing five campers, one did not use catheters and the others self-cathed. I really enjoyed assisting the campers with personal care, even though I've smelled enough urine/feces and cleaned plenty of rear ends to last me a life time. ;-)
As strange as this may sound, I was a bit disappointed that our girls self-cathed because that meant I wouldn't have the opportunity to learn/practice inserting catheters (as we'd been instructed during Staff Training week). In order to complete my Spina Week adventure, I visited the Lime cabin one afternoon with hopes of adding another unique experience to my list of life happenings. Sure enough, I learned to cath this week! Yay! Let me tell you, I am a changed person after this week, hehe.
...Wow, I am so exhausted. *Must. Keep. Typing.*
Anyways, I was pretty devastated for Spina Week to end, especially because it meant that our time at Aldersgate had come to an end, as well. Everyone seemed really sad to see us go, and we were equally disappointed...so much so that I know I cried at least four times between Thursday night and Saturday morning. It sucked. Really.
Thankfully, a large group of us went out to eat at Damgoode Pies (best pizza place EVER) after camp on Friday afternoon, and then a bunch of us hung out that afternoon and evening, as well. We really had a GREAT time. In fact, Allie and I went out with a total bang by rolling "The Bostie Boys'" truck with ceran wrap and writing sweet phrases on the windows with shoe polish. It was pretty darn awesome if I do say so myself. I'd also like to say that I'm pretty sure the boys were rather impressed with our concoction, which probably earned us a bit more respect in the practical joke department. I can just hear them, "...Those Cajun girls sure are something else..." LoL. :)
After a surprisingly short seven-hour drive, I arrived home last night around 6 p.m. The last day or so has been spent with family and re-packing, which is, bittersweet, I guess. I'm sad that I haven't really even gotten the chance to morn my distance from Little Rock before having to re-focus and leave again. It's just so darn hard to worry about packing for two weeks (including thinking ahead six months) while my heart is elsewhere. Sigh.
As I'm sure everyone is in need of an refresher, here's an update to my schedule for the rest of the summer.
- June 30-July 4: Serving as an Adult Leader at 4-H Camp in Pollock, LA
- July 4-10: Driving (riding) 2,000 miles to Boise, Idaho; flying home.
- July 14-August 2: Camp Bon Coeur (Staff Training/Camp) in Richard, Louisiana
- August 28-September 1: Potential Labor Day weekend trip to Michigan/Ohio (?)
- September 4: Arrival in Boise, Idaho; settle in for an interesting semester
- September 8: Begin internship at St. Luke's Children's Hospital in Boise, Idaho
Grant Walker 4-H Educational Center
3000 HWY 8
Pollock, LA 71467
1492 S. Roosevelt, Apt. A-2
Boise, ID 83705
Camp Bon Coeur
Acadian Baptist Center
1202 Academy Rd.
Eunice, LA 70535