Ryan was diagnosed at 14 months old. At an early age, began using a continuous glucose monitor (CGM) and later coupled that with an insulin pump. He began checking his blood sugar on his own when he was 3 and began giving his own insulin at age 5. He is a happy and loving boy who loves sports! He plays ice hockey, football, and baseball competitively. For fun he loves to swim, rock climb, play Madden on his PlayStation and hang out with friends. When he grows up, he wants to play professional sports or be a sports commentator or sports reporter.
Year Diagnosed: 2009 (14 months old)
Years as a camper: 8 years
• What’s your favorite part about camp?
I love color wars, swimming, the water slide, rock climbing, archery, going out on canoes and trying to stand on the fountain, and getting pulled behind the boat on a tube. I also love to be around other kids with Type 1 because it makes me feel like I am not different. I also love that every year I am always the one who has gone to camp more years than anyone else (even some of the counselors).
• If you could describe Camp Kudzu in one word, what would that word be?
• Did you know anyone who had Type 1 Diabetes before camp?
Yes my mom, but I met friends at Sprouts Day Camp and I am still friends with them today. I meet new people every year. I am really excited this year because my oldest friend from Sprouts, David, is going back to camp with me.
What’s one of your favorite memories of camp?
The summer I went to Allatoona I got to ride on a tube with a boat pulling me and I had to hold on or I would get flipped into the lake. I was on the tube with my friend Parker and we laughed and screamed and had a great time. We did it over and over again!
• What’s the most helpful or interesting thing that you learned at camp?
Other kids are dealing with the same things that I am. If you are newly diagnosed, you would learn a lot about Type 1 care, but I was diagnosed so young that I had to learn most of it before camp started. So for me, it was knowing that I was not alone.
• If you could only do one activity at camp, what would it be?
Talk to my friends and hang out for a week.
• What would you tell a potential camper about Camp Kudzu?
Camp Kudzu is a lot of fun. There are a lot of activities like swimming, archery, color wars, horseback riding, bike riding, and rock climbing. You never get bored because we are always doing something. You get to meet other kids with Type 1 and most adults and counselors have type 1. There are way more people there with Type 1 than those without it. So when you look around you see sensors, pumps, pods, syringes, meters, and glucose tabs everywhere!