I met my friend G and her younger sister O, in college and we've been friends ever since.
Over the years we've kept in touch - And yes, there's moments when our lives have gotten in the way of course, but we always pick up right were left off - And that's that's what's amazing about old friends!
G & O's father passed away last week and the mass was this past Saturday morning. I know what it's like to lose your father and even though we hadn't talked in over a year, I wanted to be there for them.
Cut to 8 a.m. Saturday morning and an infusion set site on my leg that was swollen, black and blue, and a blood sugar of 338. For some reason my site had stopped absorbing insulin in the middle of the night and I was feeling craptacular to say the least.
Textbook a.m. blood sugars all week, except for the day when I needed diabetes to play nice - AAARRRRRGGGHHHH.
I changed my infusion set, bolused for both a correction and coffee, persevered, and I made it to the church 5 minutes after the funeral mass had started. I slid into an aisle seat next to some old friends from both college and high school and concentrated on what was being said about our friends father.
My mind drifted back to our college days, when my friends and I used to get in all sorts of trouble. G & O's mom and dad were from Italy and didn't always take to kindly to our "anything goes" attitude! As we got older we'd all laugh about our escapades, but I'm sure we drove all of our parents nuts!
About 20 minutes into the mass, I spotted little girl 4 pews up and across the aisle who couldn't have been more than 5, and it was clear that she wanted to play instead of be still. She spied me and started waving. I was fiddling with pump tubing and had no idea who she was, but waved back just the same. Her father told her to stop and they both turned back towards the alter....
It was then that I noticed some tubing coming out of his pocket and the outline of a Dexcom clipped to his hip.
My inner voice started screaming: TURN AROUND, I HAVE AN INSULIN PUMP TOO.
Of course, he didn't and I told myself to get my focus back to the mass. I listened and learned some things I hadn't known about my friends father. I studied the the various wood and marble carvings and paintings of St. Michael, the Patron Saint of Warriors & Chivalrous (don't even ask me how I knew those facts, I just do) throughout the church that was his namesake.
BUT, every once and a while, I'd look over to my fellow PWD in church and try to catch his eye.
The mass was ending & as my friends' followed their father's casket down the aisle looking so heartbroken & sad, I immediately started crying and promptly forgot about the carved St. Michael's and the phantom PWD in the church.
I met my friends outside the church & hugged them tight. Then it was off to the cemetery and the luncheon afterwards &
Phantom PWD was in the past - so to speak. He and his family weren't at the cemetery or the restaurant and all my attention was my friends and their family and I pretty much forgot about my PWD sighting.
And I didn't think about the Phantom PWD dude until last night, when I suddenly came to the realization that knowing that he was in the church made me feel..... like I wasn't alone. Which is SO WEIRD because I was with dear old friends who mean the world to me! I knew I wasn't alone, and I hadn't even felt alone..... until I saw him.
I wondered what his name was, how long he'd had diabetes, how long he'd been on the pump & the Dex, and how he knew my friends & their family.
I wondered if he knew about the DOC and how wonderful our community is.
And I wanted to thank him, because just knowing that this PWD was in the church gave me some sort of comfort that I really needed - And I would have loved to have been able to return the favor.