Get Out of the Way

/Get Out of the Way

Get Out of the Way

If I’ve learned one thing from the time I’ve spent at Special Love and Camp Fantastic, it’s that sometimes you just have to know when to get out of the way. So it shouldn’t be any surprise that I’ve let wiser heads (and younger hearts) prevail when it came to posting on Special Love’s blog, That said, it’s now a year and a half later and the stars have aligned to where I feel compelled to finally make an appearance blog-wise. Today is “Giving Tuesday” and I feel the need to give back to an organization that has given me so much.

Dave is super-good at getting out of the wayIf I’ve learned one thing from the time I’ve spent at Special Love and Camp Fantastic, it’s that sometimes you just have to know when to get out of the way. So it shouldn’t be any surprise that I’ve let wiser heads (and younger hearts) prevail when it came to posting on Special Love’s blog, That said, it’s now a year and a half later and the stars have aligned to where I feel compelled to finally make an appearance blog-wise. Today is “Giving Tuesday” and I feel the need to give back to an organization that has given me so much.

 

As you hopefully know by now (otherwise, I’m really not doing my job here), Special Love is closing out our 30th year of service to Mid-Atlantic children with cancer and their families. I’ve been incredibly fortunate to have been around for that entire span and even luckier to have made a living – and a life – for 25 of those years. I can’t begin to tell you (which is good news for those of you already tired of reading) how many inspirational people I’ve met and how many stories I’ve heard. I’ve seen campers who no one expected back to camp who not only “graduated” (aged out) but came back as stellar counselors. I’ve seen kids who boarded the bus to camp with promises from Mom and Dad that they’d be picked up at the slightest sign of homesickness, only to have Mom and Dad call the camp office to make sure their child was okay “because we haven’t heard anything.” (That’s because their child was far too busy to check in.) More poignantly, I’ve seen parents who put their acutely sick child on the bus with no assurances of a good prognosis, only the faith that camp was where their child truly wanted to be.

 

One of the first essays I wrote after coming to work for Special Love in 1987 was called “Heroes” and it waxed poetic on the fall from grace of most of my childhood heroes and how I had replaced them with real heroes, our campers. It seemed only fitting then that our milestone year in 2012 included a series entitled “30 Years & 30 Heroes.” Producing the series has been a labor of love as it has enabled me to go back in time and not only relive some of the high points of camp, but also remember (and reunite with) some terrific people. If you haven’t already checked out all the entries in the series, you’ll see them listed on our home page. The latest one went up today!

 

I’ll close with one of my favorite quotes by Ian MacLaren (a fellow Scot): “Be kind, for everyone you meet is fighting a hard battle.” My thanks to everyone at Special Love, campers and volunteers alike, for sharing their hard battles over the past 30 years and for being there as we each got through them. With your support and prayers, we’ll get through 30 years’ more.

 

That said, it’s time for me to get out of the way and leave the blogging to the bloggers.

 

— Dave Smith

2012-11-27T20:30:04+00:00 Featured, How To Help|0 Comments

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