Friday, July 30, 2010

Camp Pros (and oh yeah, cons too)

Grace leaves for diabetes camp in 9 days, but who's counting, really? She will be gone for 6 days - overnight. Did I mention that she just turned 8? Yep, thought I did. What was I thinking signing my just-8-year-old up for 6 days of sleepaway camp? Oh the fact that she begged and pleaded to go, that might have done the trick. Now, of course, I have my doubts and they are pick, pick, picking at my brain. So, like any rational human being (I didn't say I actually WAS one, I'm just saying I know what they would do...) would do, I compiled a list of PROS and CONS to this diabetes camp adventure.

+ Grace will have great diabetic care while she is away. On site doctors and CDEs, round the clock care.
+ She will meet other T1s her age and form friendships and communions that I hope for her.
+ She will meet and be surrounded by older T1s all week. In her mind, that's nirvana.
+ A camp experience for her! Swimming and kayaking and campfires!!!
+ It will be nice to take a break from D for the week around here. And now I feel guilty for even saying this as a 'PRO' on the list.
+ She'll learn that she is not alone in this journey.
+ She will learn more independence in her care. Though after the camp staff meet her and get to know her, I can imagine them using her to guide others in independent care, and for Grace, this would be great, to be the role model to someone else -  the teacher, instead of always, always, always, the learner.
+ She can take a break from us for a week. No Mommy nags, no sister fights, no house rules - and who doesn't need a break from all this every once in a while?
+ Other people on the OmniPod! She has yet to meet another kiddo who is on the Pod, face-to-face.
+ Learning tips and tricks and insider info, from other T1s and how they care for themselves. She might come back with some great ideas!
+ They will keep her busy and occupied with new and exciting adventures. The girl is all about adventures and trying new stuff. It will open worlds for her.

- 6 days. 6 days overnight. She has never spent more than one night away from home. I went to Denver for 3 days and she cried and cried when I returned about how much she missed me. I worry that the days will seems endless to her and she really might want to come home. I cannot call or talk to her for the 6 days, only send her a one-way email which they will give her every afternoon. This is more my worry than hers. She has not expressed one iota of one thought of possibly even missing me. That reassures me, but it does nothing to quell my Mommy-worry.
- She is just 8! She had to be 8 to get into camp and begged me that she truly would be 8 exactly 3 weeks before camp started. But I know that she will be among the youngest at the camp. The other kids seems so much older than her - the camp ages are 8-13. Will they always remember that she is just 8? I hope so.

Ok, so I only have two cons about the whole camp experience. They are outweighed by the pros heavily. But they itch at my brain, not knowing if I did the right thing in letting her go...


Unknown said...

OMGoodness, this is EXCITING news for Grace!!! Joe is 7...and I am planning on looking into a camp for him in the next year or two. I can sooooo feel your anxieties re: being away from her for that long. I cannot even imagine...heck last night my husband actually took Joe out to eat. He hasn't done that solo since Joe was diagnosed 4 years ago!

Please keep us updated on how Grace and YOU do with the camping. I cannot wait to hear how it goes.

Lorraine of "This is Caleb..." said...

(Disclaimer: this is easy for me to say as I am not sending Caleb away to camp on his own yet. Nevertheless...)

She will be fine! You will be fine! I have yet to hear anything but glowing reviews about D Camp experiences. I know that in 15 days you will have a wonderful story to share like the countless others that I have read. :)

Jacquie said...

From my long-ago experience at Diabetes camp, I have this "pro" to add to your list:

As the years go on, Grace will be one of the coolest kids at Diabetes camp. It's true. When I showed up the summer after my diagnosis, there was a solid group of kids who'd been diagnosed long ago (and had been at camp for many summers), and they were the cool, popular ones.

She'll love it!

Meri said...

I know how hard it is. I KNOW. She is an amazing girl. She will thrive!

LaLa said...

This is going to be SO good for both of you. Like Lo said - easy for me to say - right??

She will love it. The PROS totally outweigh the CONS.


I can't wait to read the blog where you tell us how much she LOVED camp!!

Amy said...

Excited to hear all about her's going to be amazing for her!

Marla said...

My 9 year old, Ava, just returned from 6 days of diabetes sleep-away camp in Colorado. It was such an amazing experience for her. She loved her new friends, she loved the fun activities, she came home loading her own syringes and doing her own injections. Not homesick and could have stayed for another several days if she could have. All around an amazing experience.

Jules said...

Oh, my, the pros and cons list! Thing is each item does not carry equal weight. She will LOVE this and it is such a good chance for you to let you achy-brain (phrase I have adopted after Meri used it!) have a camp-break of its own. I cannot imagine how I will cope with this day when it comes but come it must.
(From a totally selfish perspective maybe you could blog about how you make those quilts fo yours? I am longing to make one but am a bit nervous about how to start).
Have fun Grace! We will all be thinking of you and looking forward to hearing all about it.

shannon said...

Thank you for sharing your pros and cons. My 10yo daughter is in the middle of her first sleepaway diabetes camp, and reading your pros list gave me more reasons to be glad we are doing this. I must say that sitting down and talking with the doctor who would be stationed in her cabin made me feel so much better about leaving her in their care. I hope you leave after dropping her off with the same confidence.

Unknown said...

Eye Care