Thursday, March 4, 2010

D-Meet Up With The Fabulous Elizabeth Arnold

D-Friends In Real Life~

I was in Princeton on Tuesday evening (more on that tomorrow) and had the chance to meet up with my fellow PWD (Person With Diabetes) friend, twitter buddy, pirate woman, and authoress extraordinaire, Elizabeth Arnold.

Elizabeth and I became friends on Twitter. Her tweets and emails always make me laugh, and through our emails and tweets, she’s become a supportive friend who I’d never actually met in real life.

Princeton initially made it's way onto my radar a few weeks ago, but plans hadn't been confirmed until the end of last week, which was when I emailed Elisabeth & told her I’d be in her neck of the woods.

A flurry of emails ensued and we decided to meet at my hotel (The Westin) for dinner.

Elizabeth told me that she’d be the short woman with a big smile on her face.

I told her to look for an average sized brunette with brown boots and a huge smile.

I have to tell you, I was nervous and excited and couldn’t wait to meet my friend face to face!

Our plan was to meet in the lobby at 6:30. But I was late due to train and black car logistics, so by the time I checked in and made it to my room, it was past 6:30.

Cut to 6:43 and me practically running (OK, walking ridiculously fast - I know people must have thought I needed to find a bathroom) across the lobby to see Elizabeth sitting there waiting patiently for yours truly by the fireplace.

I went up to her and said “Hey Shorty, sorry I’m late!” We both laughed and gave one another a huge hug and started chatting immediately and none stop. W continued chatting as we made our way to the hotel restaurant and sat down at our table.

The waiter came back to our table 3 different times before we’d even looked at the menu. Finally, on his fourth visit, we ordered our food and continued to chat about EVERYTHING including but not limited to; life, diabetes, life with diabetes & growing up with diabetes, our shared love of cheese,Twitter, bacon, the DOC, boys, blood sugars, CGMS, growing up, writing, diabetes, life, life with diabetes, etc.

OK, I have to tell you before I continue - ELIZABETH IS OUTSTANDINGLY AWESOME!

We discussed our own diabetes idiosyncrasies. For example, I have a horrible time with pastas but I’m ok with potatoes. Elisabeth is fine with pasta (as long as she uses a scale,) but she finds white potatoes a real challenge and red potatoes doable.

We compared pumps (she has an Omnipod, I have a minimed,) and discussed other pumps we were interested in looking into. We tried guesstimating our dinner carbs before the meal, and we both agreed that we always did better with visual guesstimating as opposed to meal unseen guesstimating.

During and after the meal we tested our blood sugars with out meters and Elisabeth’s CGM. What was wonderful about the blood sugar testing was that our conversation continued seamlessly and we never skipped beat. Our banter didn’t stop just because we had to lance our fingers. We both understood having to test without ever having to excuse ourselves and that fact was not only wonderful, but also incredibly comforting.

When you’re with another person who understands and speaks the unspoken diabetes language, it creates both a bonding and an understanding that words can’t describe.

Diabetes meet-ups are amazing, validating and empowering and I hope everyone has the experience to connect with other PWDs, be it through DOC meet-ups or support organizations like ACTIDIABETES .

We sat at the table for hours, and finally we said goodbye sometime after 10:30 pm.

We talked and laughed for a good four hours and could have easily talked for another five, but I had early morning and had to attempt sleep.

I miss Elisabeth and appreciate her friendship so much. I know that we will continue to get together and I’m looking forward to it!


George said...

There is nothing like a D-Meetup. They are the best.

Thanks for sharing this one Kelly. Elizabeth is awesome!

Lee Ann Thill said...

EJ is super awesome, one of my oldest DOC friends, before I knew the DOC even had a name. Glad you got to have a meet-up with her. Thanks for sharing your re-cap of it :)

Elizabeth Joy said...

I had THE BEST time hanging out with you, Kel. Of course I always knew how cool/funny/strong you were, but it turns out you were even more awesome than I expected. Hope we get a chance to meet up again soon!

Tina said...

I have known EJ for years. However I have only had one opportunity for a real life meet up with her once. She truly is amazing! Real life D-meet ups are so much fun. I just hope I get one with you one day soon Kelly ;)

Anonymous said...

I wish there were d-meets up here! D: I have no one around me who speaks "the language"!

Sara MY said...

Ahhhh, that's great. Sounds like lots of fun and we all need as much of that as we can get!

Penny said...

Oh it sounds wonderful Kelly!

Rachel said...

I love reading about other meetups.

But more, I love participating in them.

Glad you had a fantastic one.

Karen said...

D-OC meet-ups rock!! And having met you both in person, I can say you both ROCK too! So I'm not surprise you had a fabulous time. Thanks for bringing us along with you. :)

Scott K. Johnson said...

That sounds like such an awesome time. I just wish the time warp would slow down a little bit. It always just zips past too fast.

Juvenile Diabetes Research Foundation San Diego said...

Loved how you talked about the unspoken diabetes language and how it creates an understanding that words can't describe. Again you speak right to the heart. There is nothing better that having a friend, significant other or spouse that has that deep connection to you. I don't think that people can live without that.