- advertisement -

Camp

Discussion in 'Parents of Children with Type 1' started by Nancy in VA, Jan 18, 2015.

  1. Nancy in VA

    Nancy in VA Approved members

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Messages:
    7,308
    At what age did you send your Type 1 child to camp? Emma will be 10 this summer and I was thinking about it, but then I think more about it and it freaks me out!

    Her older sister went I think when she was 12. She went to a sleepaway camp for 1 summer, thought it was fine but didn't ask to go back. My son hasn't been mainly because he plays baseball and that goes most of the summer, so there hasn't been a chance.

    So, now I'm thinking about it for Emma - a diabetes camp. I was thinking maybe I'd want her to go younger since its a diabetes camp but boy, the thought of my 10 year old being gone Sun - Fri at camp freaks me out. Not that I think she's at risk - I know they would take good care of her, and I've left her with other people for hours before, and my parents overnight, but it just seems to be freaking me out. But, at the same time, knowing the possibility of a week without us having to manage her diabetes and celiac for that week sounds intriguing - we haven't had a night away since she was diagnosed (the night with my parents was when I was visiting them for Spring Break - without hubby - and she stayed down the road at their condo instead of mine). I think one of the things that freaks me out is that her seizures both occurred in the summer when her activity level is different and erratic, and swimming is something that triggers major lows for her. And others of you that say they don't use the CGMS during the week.

    So, would love to hear what others have done regarding when their child went to diabetes camp, and maybe how that compared with when the non-diabetic kids went to camp.
     
  2. mamattorney

    mamattorney Approved members

    Joined:
    Apr 9, 2013
    Messages:
    1,076
    My daughter was offered the opportunity to go to overnight diabetes camp at 10 (she was diagnosed at age 10 about 4-5 months before camp). At first she was all for it, but after further thought she said no. It wasn't diabetes per se, just overnight camp in general. Overnight camp had not been on our radar and it all seemed so rush-rush and sudden, she was afraid of going away for a week, so she backed off. Over the next 12 months she warmed up to the idea of camp and she went at age 11 and had a great time. The camp she attends only does a couple of weeks of diabetes camp, the rest of the summer it's a regular overnight camp. It really helped that her cousins attend the camp when it's regular camp and they had nothing but great things to say about camp in general. They (her cousins) also invited her to a "day at camp/open house" where all the facilities were open for the day so my daughter got to experience a day at camp without any commitment. It didn't have any diabetes components, but it included all the activities, she saw the cabins, etc.

    It's coincidental because registration opens 2/1 and I was just filling out the supplemental forms this morning to get ready for registration.

    I can't comment on non-diabetic kids because my 9 year old (will be 10 by summer) wants nothing to do with overnight camp, even though his best friend is going and was desperately trying to recruit him to come with.
     
  3. aprilodell

    aprilodell Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2014
    Messages:
    100
    We are new to diagnosis, but I think that at that age it is hard for them to think about being away. Our 6th grade mandates that the kids go away to what we call outdoor lab school for a week. Both my kids did this at 10-11 years old and were scared as was I and they loved it. They will not know that they will love it until they go. I guess if you are looking at a first sleep away camp for your t1d then this would be a good option.

    My son was just diagnosed with Type 1 on Christmas Eve, he is scheduled to go high adventure camping in the Bahamas with the boys scouts in June (he is 13), luckily his father was already signed up as an adult leader, but talk about nervous. Though my hubby is capable of managing this, giving up my control and them being in a foreign country on a boat, freaks me out. Next summer he will be going to a leadership camp where he has to hike in with a compass, I am making sure he goes with a buddy. My goal is for him to be as normal as possible in spite of this illness. It is my job to figure out all the planning beforehand to decrease the amount of risk.
     
  4. Mom2Will

    Mom2Will Approved members

    Joined:
    Oct 11, 2007
    Messages:
    1,051
    I sent my son at 7, he loved it!! He goes every year now, wouldn't miss it for the world. Parents are the ones with the problems :)
     
  5. Beach bum

    Beach bum Approved members

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Messages:
    11,315
    Abby started at day camp and then was able to ease into overnight camp by doing the weekend mini-camp. She went at 10 and LOVED it.
    I know for us, the first time she went to overnight was scary. But, we were assured she would be safe, and she was. We instructed that she be checked at 2am, they did. They also are very conservative with BG's. Everyone has a target of 150 and they reduce basal to avoid any issues.
     
  6. dshull

    dshull Approved members

    Joined:
    Sep 24, 2012
    Messages:
    114
    My son just turned 10 and was diagnosed when he was 7. He went to Camp Nejeda in NJ last summer when he was 9 for a week and he LOVED it. I mean, talks about it all the time and wears his camp hoodie at least twice a week. Kids his age have the option of going for one week or two, and within 5 minutes of picking him up he said, "next year I am totally going for two weeks." And then harassed me all fall to sign him up.

    At 10, I would definitely send her. We don't deal with celiac so I can't speak to how that would go, but I know that there were kids in his bunk with celiac. He did learn a lot about diabetes and took control of things while he was there (learned to do a site change, etc.) but went back to letting me do everything at home. Which is fine with me. The only downside to camp (other than the nasty laundry he brought home) was that "re-entry" was hard for him. Our son is a happy and well-adjusted kid but I do think it is hard to be the only D kid around. And I think he loved being around all these other kids with pump sites and ketone checks and inconvenient lows. And I think when he got home, he really wanted to go back. And I get that.

    Right now we're trying to figure out a way to send our non D daughter to Girl Scout camp at the same time that our son goes to camp so we can go away for the first time in 3 years!!:)
     
  7. Nancy in VA

    Nancy in VA Approved members

    Joined:
    Jul 16, 2007
    Messages:
    7,308
    OK, so a follow up question. I know there are lots of benefits to a diabetes camp. Emma is very "accepting" of her diabetes, so while I know she will get some great benefits from the D camp, I know there are other kids who get a lot more out of it. I know there are great benefits to spending the week around a bunch of other kids with diabetes.

    What I'm asking is about people who have sent their diabetic kids to non-D camp. There is a camp not far from our house - its the one my older daughter went to. I emailed them and they have had diabetics before and are welcoming of them. Apparently the diabetics there before didn't have overnight needs because they weren't familiar with those and I would need to discuss overnight monitoring (she wears a CGMS so it would really be a counselor who is willing to be awoken with alarms and waking Emma to check). But, they are welcoming to diabetics and the camp is close (really, we drive by it to go to one of our baseball fields pretty regularly) and if the nurse isn't able / willing to change sites (the only thing Emma can't do now), its something I could actually go out and do because its so close. So, I guess I want to weigh the benefits of a "diabetes camp", and being with other diabetics, which is much further away (about 90 minutes from my house) vs. regular camp that is welcoming to diabetics. Thoughts?
     
  8. BarbDwyer

    BarbDwyer Approved members

    Joined:
    Jul 8, 2014
    Messages:
    181
    With zero experience to back it up (ha!) I will say that I am going to pull out all the stops to get my kid to a diabetic specific camp this summer. I anticipate this will require shrewd negotiations and probably bribes but I want it to happen at least once. He seems to be excepting things fine but, IMO, there is no other experience quite like being surrounded by people that automatically get 'it' whatever 'it' is. In this case T1D.

    I'm sure she'll have fun either way. :). I was anti-overnight camp for many years. My older son went to a one week Boy Scout camp a few years ago. It was such a positive experience for him. I was amazed. I had no camp experiences as a kid.
     
  9. Beach bum

    Beach bum Approved members

    Joined:
    Nov 17, 2005
    Messages:
    11,315
    My daughter does a 9-4 non-d sea camp, and it has been successful. She has gone since she was 11. The CGM made it possible. She went armed with cgm, phone and a backpack full of sugar! The camp is only first aid equipped, so I had to teach the leader on the glucagon. We set her target higher and were very conservative on correcting. I also expected a text at lunch and when low. I'm hoping she will have the Nightscout Rig for this, but she may not want to bother.z
     
  10. aprilodell

    aprilodell Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2014
    Messages:
    100
    My son went with his class to sea camp this fall, he had not been diagnosed yet it was super fun.
     
  11. aprilodell

    aprilodell Approved members

    Joined:
    Dec 28, 2014
    Messages:
    100
    We were diagnosed about a month ago and even in the hospital i was talking to the endo about the need to get him camp ready this summer. He is scheduled to go to the Bahamas for a high adventure boy scout trip where they will be on a sailboat for a week. Luckily his father was scheduled already to go as an adult volunteer and was already the medication guy. Planning on having him on a pump then, but will have a back up plan.
     

Share This Page

- advertisement -

  1. This site uses cookies to help personalise content, tailor your experience and to keep you logged in if you register.
    By continuing to use this site, you are consenting to our use of cookies.
    Dismiss Notice