Adventures in Girl Scouting

Camp Out Scream Out

The first time I took my girls camping, I was in for so many surprises.  Of course!  At the time my troop consisted of several girls who really spent so much time with me and my daughter, at my house, that I didn’t give a second thought to taking them on an overnight.

I did have one girl who was relatively new;  but she seemed so enthusiastic I didn’t think it would be an issue.  (Ha!  Ha!  Oh the naive Girl Scout leader!)
We actually weren’t even really camping;  we were at a service unit encampment that was held at a campground with what were, essentially, dorms.  They had real live floors and roofs!  They even had heat and bathrooms.  With SHOWERS!  The height of luxury!

After a busy day running around outside, we got the girls ready for bed pretty uneventfully.  Eventually all the giggling gaggle of girls was tucked in bed and I read them some stories.  Finally I left the room, leaving them to sleep with a night light.

I was a bundle of nerves.  I don’t sleep well away from home to begin with and the cot I was on was very uncomfortable.  (Of course.)

I had juuuuust finally started to drift off when I heard blood curdling screams coming from the girls room.  I leapt up and raced in, heart pounding, prepared to do battle!

To find all the girls sound asleep and motionless.  I walked around peering at them all in disbelief;  was I imagining things?

Back to my uncomfortable cot, tossing and turning and finally starting to drift off, when, again, BLOOD CURDLING SHRIEKS!  I ran in AGAIN to find all the girls still sound asleep.

This time I decided to stay in the room for a while, though, and what did I find? Eventually, I discovered…
One of my girls was a sleep screamer!

If I hadn’t seen it with my own eyes I don’t think I could have believed it or imagined it.  But she would actually open her mouth, scream at the top of her lungs, and then just sleep on as if nothing had happened.  The even more amazing part of that was that none of the other girls (or leaders!) woke up with the screaming.  I absolutely could not believe it!

The next day my screamers mom came to pick her up and I mentioned that her daughter had been screaming in her sleep.  Her reply?  “Oh yes, she always does that at sleepovers.”

Huh!  Perhaps something mom could have mentioned to me BEFORE giving me repeated heart attacks in the middle of the night?

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