There has been a lot of talk lately in the DOC about our diabetes camp experiences. One thing we can all agree on is that summers at Camp were the best summers ever.
If it weren't for my summers at Camp Conrad-Chinnock, I would never have learned to give my own injections.
If it weren't for Camp Conrad-Chinnock, I would not have a nearly endless supplies of annoying campfire songs or the Big Mouth Blue Frog story.
I met one of my best friends at Camp.
I had my first slow dance at Camp (you better believe I still remember the song.)
I discovered I hate canoeing at Camp.
I have great memories of climbing the dining hall fireplace and repelling back down.
I would probably not have survived my "rebellious" teen years without Camp.
As a camper I learned that I am not the only person on the planet with diabetes and as camp staff I learned that I have an impact on the lives of younger kids with diabetes.
I still have all the yearly Camp t-shirts, but my favorite is the year that Camp was Western themed and the shirts had a cowboy riding a syringe shaped bull. It was my first year on staff and several of us needed to be fingerprinted, so the Camp director drove us up into Big Bear to have our fingerprints done at the police station. I was last of 12 staff members to get fingerprinted and the sweet female officer says to me, "is that a syringe on your shirt?" I might have been slightly low (I think it was near dinner time); we were all wearing the same shirt, but somehow she didn't notice it until me? I don't remember what I said but suddenly I was escorted back to the front of the station in a total hysterical giggle fit.
As camp staff you don't have the option of putting diabetes on the back burner when your frustrated, because there are hundreds of kids looking up to you.
I tore the belt loops of a friend's pants walking thru the Camp haunted house one year. No, not just one loop, like 3 of them, oops. Guess I was scared.
We used to stand on the dining hall benches and sing "grace" at the top of our lungs, about 10 years ago someone complained about it being a "religious" act and we had to stop, but it was fun.
The first year I was a cabin counselor, my girls made a Captain Underpants Flag and we ran it up the flag pole one night, so the whole Camp saw it the next morning. That was fun.
Oh and every morning during the staff meetings, campers are supposed to clean the cabins, but they don't. They actually are busy filling water balloons and squirt guns, because the staff meeting always ends with a water fight, no matter how cold it is.
okay I guess I wandered of into memory land there, but you get the point. Camp is good. If you haven't sent your D-kid to Camp, you are depriving them.
And I think we need a D-Camp for grown ups.