Lessons Learned from LIT Summer

This summer, we tasked our LITs to answer the prompt: What Has LIT Summer Taught You? After much thinking, writing, and reflecting they presented their answers in front of all of camp during LIT Vespers. Over the next few months, we will share these lessons in a blog series. Here is part one!

What has LIT Summer Taught Me?

“When I found out I would be returning to camp for my LIT summer, I was excited but also overwhelmed by how nervous I was. I knew it would be different from any summer before and I had no clue if I would be able to do things the LIT program includes, but if this summer has taught me anything, it’s not to count myself out. Before this summer, I would’ve never imagined myself doing half of the things I’ve done. Whether that’s hiking to the highest part of West Virginia or trying to stay positive in a bad situation, LIT summer has shown me I can do it. Even if I think I can’t.

Life can get challenging and at times it may feel like all you want to say is “I’m done” or “I can’t do this” but I’ve realized that is just not true. I am so much more capable than I thought and I’ve found that when things seem like they are too hard or too much they just need a little extra effort. 

This summer, I feel like I’ve proven how capable I am, especially to myself. I often find that I freak myself out for things that seem like a challenge, but once it’s over I realize it was only my self-doubt holding me back. This year especially, my golden sisters have been there for me every step of the way. Whether it’s for a laugh, a cry, or getting a brick from 10ft of water during lifeguard training, they’re always there. I am so thankful for them. 

I’ve learned that “I can’t” will no longer be a part of my vocabulary. I can do it. Even if that means giving more effort, positivity, or asking for support. It’s kind of like building a fire, it starts small and builds as you add more supplies and put in more effort. It’s my own self-determination that keeps my fire LIT. This summer has taught me not to count myself out and even if it seems too challenging, I know I am capable.”

Riley Sanquiche, LIT of Summer 2023

What has LIT Summer Taught Me?

“Going into LIT summer, the only thing I knew to expect was the Wilderness Trip and Lifeguard/CPR Training. What I didn’t know was that it would be my most challenging and rewarding summer yet. There is no specific challenge that I can say “Yes, this is what I learned and this is how I’ve grown.” Instead, my mind goes to the memories and experiences I’ve gained. 

A few small lessons learned are: being the one person who listens in a crowd means the world, advocating for yourself is a necessary life skill, and spending time alone is okay. I know these seem like cliches, but to learn these lessons through experiences rather than hearing them adds so much impact. These are just a few of the lessons I’ve learned this summer.

This prompt makes me think of the summer as a whole and the best way I can sum it up is by saying: It will be the most challenging summer at camp, but it will force you out of your comfort zone, do things you’ve never done before, and overall make you a stronger and more resilient person. 

However, I think the most important lesson LIT Summer has taught me is how to know myself, and how to accept myself.”

Mary Johnson, LIT Summer 2023

Keep following along for more insights from our Summer 2023 LITs!