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home : columns : dear harriette June 24, 2016

6/7/2014 12:08:00 PM
College student wants to return to camp

DEAR HARRIETTE: I'm about to enter my freshman year of college, and I'm already thinking about what I'll do next summer. My parents want me to get an internship to pad my resume for when it's time for me to get a serious job. However, I want to return to the sleepaway camp I went to as a kid and be a counselor. I figure I have the rest of my life to work, so why not have fun for one summer? I don't know how to tell my parents this, and I'm scared they'll be mad and stressed that I am at a disadvantage when getting a real job. What do you think I should do? -- Real World Too Soon, Greenwich, Connecticut

DEAR REAL WORLD TOO SOON: Take a deep breath. The first thing you need to do is focus on school. Your freshman year in college promises to be more challenging and very different from high school. Give yourself a chance to acclimate to college life and the rigors of your academic workload.  

Talk to your adviser at school about your interests, and learn if there are any summer internship opportunities that may interest you. Keep track of the deadline for your summer camp. When you get closer to having to make a decision, discuss your thoughts with your adviser and your parents. You and your parents have valid ideas. I can tell you that any job experience that you can gain that is focused on your future life choices is wise whenever possible.  

DEAR HARRIETTE: My husband and I are seven months pregnant. As I get closer to my due date, I have found myself becoming more and more anxious about becoming a mom! I'm an only child, and I have limited experience working with kids. My husband assures me that once our baby is born, my maternal instincts will kick in, but I'm not so sure. I've always wanted and loved kids, but I have no idea how to be a mom. What can I do to make myself feel ready for my baby before he or she gets here? -- Expecting, Seattle

DEAR EXPECTING: You are in good company, my dear! Even for first-time moms with siblings, trepidation is common because it is hard to know what to anticipate. Talk to your doctor about any medical questions you may have. Identify a pediatrician so that you are ready for when your son or daughter is born. Ask that doctor as many questions as you can think of in order to get ready. A wonderful resource book I read when I was pregnant was "What to Expect When You're Expecting." It outlines in great detail what you should know from birth up to age 5.  

Be sure to talk to friends and family members with children. Observe them first, though, to ensure that you are in alignment with the choices they have made. Finally, trust your instincts. Among you and your husband and your network of support, you will learn how to care for your child.  

Lifestylist and author Harriette Cole is president and creative director of Harriette Cole Media. You can send questions to or c/o Universal Uclick, 1130 Walnut St., Kansas City, MO 64106.

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