J-O-S-L-I-N. Two hundred people sat around a campfire with amphitheater-style wooden benches as seating, singing J-O-S-L-I-N. Campers ranged in age from eight years old to eighteen years old.
I sang this song with my bunkmates every summer for many years after I was diagnosed with Type 1 Diabetes. We sat down for this campfire once a week. It was cold. There were bugs. But for two hundred boys, this campfire song meant something - something that couldn't be expressed through the games we played during the day.
I wear an insulin pump to treat my diabetes. This insulin pump is attached to my body through a catheter site. This catheter site must be changed every 2 - 3 days, without fail. My parents always changed my catheter site while I lived at home. I never changed the catheter site when I was at home. I never even tried.
It was during my first summer at camp that I changed my catheter site for the first time. I inserted an inch-long needle into my stomach.
I was nine years old.
I went to dinner that night. I was excited - at the end of every meal, everyone at camp banged on our large, wooden tables and shouted "BOLUS!" This was to remind everyone to give insulin - through injection or insulin pump - for the meal we had just eaten. So when everyone at camp banged on our large, wooden tables and shouted "BOLUS," I gave myself insulin through the catheter site I had just placed in my stomach.
The dining hall cleared out on this night. Each bunk went directly to the campfire. Two hundred people - primarily young boys with Type 1 Diabetes - sat around a campfire with amphitheater-style wooden benches as seating.
We sang J-O-S-L-I-N.
It is now thirteen years later. I still insert a catheter site into my stomach every 2 to 3 days. I have inserted nearly 1,200 catheter sites into my stomach in the years I have been using the insulin pump.
It is now thirteen years later, and I am running the Boston Marathon for Joslin.
I am committed to finishing the Boston Marathon.
I am committed to running the 2015 Boston Marathon at least one hour faster than I ran the 2014 Boston Marathon.
And I am committed to raising $1,200 for each mile I run.
Join me as I raise $31,440.
For the boys who attend Camp Joslin.
And for a future without Type 1 Diabetes.