She who is brave is free

I have been helping my favorite student (aka my daughter) prep for her first time going to a sleep away camp for weeks now.  For as much as she has been excited to experience such a thing for the first time, she is also very nervous about the experience for all the reasons why it would be nerve racking to go away from home for the first time. 

I have done my best to be as supportive and encouraging as possible for the whole thing. I get how/why she is nervous. Ever since she was school-aged, she has always been challenged by things like being so small for her age, not feeling the most comfortable in social situations. (especially organized athletics, amongst other things)

In her earliest years of school, she did counseling to help her attend to what challenges her most and she has come a long way but new situations really ignite a special kind of anxiety within her that make things even harder than they should be. 

I have done a lot of thinking and creative problem solving about the whole thing and came up with something that I hope will help her feel a little less nervous so that her anticipation about the situation is more positive than negative. Because part of what I do professionally is graphic art and design, I made her some temporary tattoos to share with her new friends...

Years ago, I discovered Silhouette temporary tattoo paper because I was thinking about getting a tattoo but I wasn't quite sure about it. For the matter of "think before you ink" I made myself some tattoos and did some test driving of them. (I ended up never getting it so I'm glad I did it like this)

Here is a youtube video I did about how to use the tattoo paper...

Keeping what my daughter loves most (animals), I designed some temporary tattoos with Bible verses (she is going to a "church camp") and I did some DIY this past weekend for her to have enough to wear them herself and then share them with her cabin mates and camp counselor. 

She had a great time doing a "test drive" of some of the designs and (thankfully) she is even that much more excited about when it is time for her to head to camp, make some new friends, and experience some things she never has before. 

I'm very hopeful that my daughter is able to face down her fears and fully experience and enjoy her first trip to camp. I know when I went to camp when I was her age, I made some of my most treasured childhood memories there. Here's to helping my daughter discover and delight in things that she is excited to experience more of in the future.