If you've known me for any length of time, you probably realize that I've got a pretty severe case of "photo phobia." Okay, that's not a clinical disease or something listed in DSMIV - I actually loathe how every little quirk in people's personalities seems more and more to be labeled as one "disorder" or another by the "powers that be." So I say that in jest, just as a shorthand way of describing my discomfort with being in photos.
I love pictures - come to my home and see all the scrapbooks! - but I just don't think I look particularly good in most of them. So I get nervous around cameras, unless I'm holding them.
But it's something I'm working on in a number of ways, both because I want my girls and, later, their children and grandchildren to have a visual memory of me, and because, frankly, it's just never healthy to "rest" in our struggles and weaknesses. Actual illnesses? Sure, in those cases we sometimes need to accept and learn to live with our infirmities. But my "phobia" is something to tackle, not tolerate.
I know I may not ever completely overcome my fear - don't look for me to do a fashion shoot anytime soon! - but I can choose to live toward that end, doing what's necessary to minimize the effects of my worries and, especially, its impact on others. And so - though I find that most moms ("phobic" or not) are minimally in family photos simply because they're usually the ones taking the pictures - one thing I do is to purpose, especially for significant events, to pose for a few shots.
Pretty frequently, I feel the need to delete some - I love the digital era in that regard! - but eventually (especially if I'm doing what I can to feel less nervous) we get some I actually really like. And such is the case with this one - and two other very similar ones Jeff snapped of the girls and me at Purple Park on Thursday morning. Definitely a "keeper."
As for other highlights of our Thursday at camp, the girls once again could barely contain themselves until afternoon swimming time. Unfortunately, it was dark and rainy all afternoon. Fortunately, though, thunder and lightning stayed away so the waterfront remained open even though it looked like this:
So the girls and Jeff swam for about 40 minutes before getting cold; I wasn't on buddy board duty so I made a visit to the camp store and had a delightful chat with a summer staffer who's thinking of getting an ESL major. Then they went over to the "craft cabin," where I met them a few minutes later and found Jeff working on Abigail's - and then Rachel's - fleece pillow.
Supper that night was meant to be another picnic. However, after Tuesday's run-in with the rain, Troy wisely opted to move it indoors. It was, however, buffet-style, which meant our usual table was unavailable and we had to eat on the outdoor (albeit awning-covered) deck in the drizzle. I was less than pleased. But, as I felt my anxiety rising, I remembered to pray and simply said, "Lord, can you make this manageable for me right now?"
And don't you love it when you can see His "yes" answers immediately?
After working through the buffet line and making our way back to the table through the steady sprinkle, we were joined by three older adults and very quickly found ourselves engaged in conversation. Turns out, they work with MMAP, the Mobile Missionary Assistance Program, traveling the nation in their RVs to places that need help with various maintenance and other service-oriented tasks. MMAP takes applications from work sites and then assigns volunteers to various regions and locales. Often, the volunteers don't know what they'll do when they arrive - at Lake Lundgren this week, the gentlemen worked on outdoor electrical projects and helped with a staff duplex that's being erected while the one man's wife helped in the short-staffed kitchen - but they're ready, willing, and able to meet the needs they encounter.
It was a delight to talk with such servant-hearted people - and inspiring to see how they're devoting their retirement years to helping others. That made me smile. And, before I knew it, supper was wrapping up and I'd barely noticed the chill, damp air the entire time. That's when I realized the Lord had answered my prayer - I'd not only managed but had enjoyed myself - and that made me smile all the more.
Friday's teaser: Where are we, why are we there, and what are eating?