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Today was Madeline’s arrival day at the Clara Barton Camp.

This is her first camp experience. She’ll be there for five days.

Five glorious days.

Five days in which to make new, and possibly life-long, friends.

Five days in which to hone existing diabetes management skills.

Five days in which to learn new D-management skills.

Five days for swimming, playing, singing, dancing, laughing, and being silly, with other girls who, while entirely different from her in so many ways, are the same as her in one of the most essential ways.

Five days of carb counting, low treating, high treating, set changing, bolus giving… in an environment in which—for the very first time in over two years—she won’t feel  different, less than, abnormal, strange, damaged, weird, stupid. In which she won’t be perceived as the slow-downer or the fun-killer of the group when she has to stop doing something for a few minutes in order to treat a low, count up carbs, or give a bolus. In which she will be wholly accepted by others.

Five days in which she can stand out for being who she is, rather than for the disease she has.

This is the gift of diabetes camp. 


About Heather Garcia Queen

I am… a mother of 3 spectacular children. A wife of an architect extraordinaire. An MSW. A psychologist in an elementary school. A (wishful) writer. A protector of family and spirit. A worshipper of the natural world. A seeker of knowledge. A lover of the arts. An introvert. A silver-lining kind of girl.


5 thoughts on “gift

  1. I hope she absolutely loves it!

    Posted by Scott K. Johnson | 07/28/2013, 10:09 pm
  2. I didn’t know anyone with diabetes when I was growing up but I LOVED camp!

    No matter if it is two people hanging out or a group of people with diabetes (camp, FFL, etc) the power of “same” is incredible and so encouraging!

    Posted by Sara | 07/28/2013, 10:32 pm
  3. i’m so happy for her (and for you). your post made me cry a little bit—this part: “In which she won’t be perceived as the slow-downer or the fun-killer of the group” because i’d never thought of that. i guess i worry about *me* being the fun-killer (sure, he can stay at your house for dinner? what are you having for dinner? oh, thai food? what kind? will there be coconut rice? are you picking it up or eating there? etc.) but i never, ever realized before reading this that he must feel like a fun-killer sometimes.

    Posted by Katy | 07/29/2013, 1:19 am
  4. The “slow-downer” and “fun-killer” perfectly describes how it is sometimes. I am so happy for her. Cannot wait to hear how it goes. xo

    Posted by Reyna | 07/29/2013, 7:30 am
  5. So excited for her! So excited for you! We’re in the Boston area and nearly everyone we’ve come across since our son’s diagnosis has asked talked about their own Barton experiences. Can’t wait to hear more!

    Posted by Suzanne | 07/29/2013, 11:35 am

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Creative Commons License
This work by Heather Garcia Queen is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NoDerivs 3.0 Unported License.

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