Why Camp Leaders saved my mental health.

It’s the weekend of my 18th birthday party. Finally, my boyfriend was coming home from his new life at uni. We had been going through a rough patch recently but I knew we could pull through. We had a fun weekend with our friends, he’d seemed off, but that could’ve been the flurry of alcohol passing through my system. So, he went back to his uni flat but our relationship took a turn for the worst. We both had our faults so he called it quits after nearly 2 years, over facebook messenger. Cos ya-know shit happens. As any other dumped person knows, the next couple of months, everything’s shit basically. I learnt a lot about him over that period of time, which I never expected. So, as you can guess this took a toll.

I wallowed for a looong time. Got it all out of my system, well most, I still have off days. I started to believe if he didn’t want me, who would? I’d just turned 18, so going out and getting plastered was my coping mechanism. I needed to feel wanted after being thrown away by the person I loved most in the world. Yet nothing made me feel better.

Then I thought, I need to get away. While at college one Wednesday morning I started searching up volunteer abroad, where I would take a year out and go do something real and valuable with my time. That’s when I came across Camp Leaders.

Camp Leaders is an organisation that helps you get hired at a summer camp in America, they sort all the ‘stuff’ and you just make yourself as ‘hireable’ as possible. Think of it as the job centre, you give them your application and they find you a job. Its an incredible organisation that gives you the opportunity to embrace your summer in a new culture.

Now here’s what happened to me. I signed up on Wednesday and by the Monday afterwards, I was sat in a coffee shop having an interview. This total impulse honestly changed my entire direction. Like any other first love, I took it hard and Camp Leaders gave me a focus, an end goal that needed to be achieved.

One of the main reasons I loved it, was because I knew ‘he’ didn’t know about it. I had gotten off my arse, worked hard and paid for it myself. It gave me a sense of ambition that I had lost under the piles of tissues and bad TV.

The hardest part is that I work for his family business, so having to see his parents constantly and serving his grandma and aunties meals, was incredibly difficult, but I kept my brave face on and told them all about how I’m going to America alone, teaching kids, travelling America, all from my own back. So that made me smile.

I was hired to work at a camp in Utah, where I will be doing Outdoor Cooking, so expect some posts about that, posts about the run-up to Utah and then I will be travelling through to Los Angeles. Afterwards, I will be moving away to university and starting my new life at uni, happy.

To be honest, I don’t know why I’m writing this. I haven’t written in a long time as I just didn’t feel like it. I felt numb. I guess this just shows how grateful I am for the opportunities I have been able to grasp, and so many other people can too.

I’m a firm believer of if you want something, go get it. So I got it.


things change


*All opinions are my own.


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