The bathrooms at Madison Square Garden would have to be the cleanest public toilets I’ve ever seen. It was tough to get up and take a break from what was turning into one of the best gigs I’d ever been to, but when nature calls, you answer – even if Billy Joel is on stage!

I found an empty cubicle, quickly peed (TMI) and went to wash my hands. At the basin, out of the corner of my eye, I saw a women rummaging in her bag. I was about to look away, when, in the reflection of the mirror, I saw her pull out some thing familiar. It was an insulin pen. She bent over ever so slightly and jabbed the needle into her thigh, right through her jeans.

Our eyes met. ‘Oh, sorry,’ she said. I could tell it was a reflex – said in the same tone as if she had accidentally knocked elbows with me.

Don’t be,‘ I said. ‘I have diabetes too.’

She smiled at me and looked relieved. ‘My blood glucose is high. I needed some insulin…’Suddenly she looked a little sheepish. ‘I shouldn’t inject through my clothes though. Right?’

‘Ah – shoulda coulda woulda!‘ I said to her. ‘Whatever works for you! I was high at the beginning of the night. It’s coming back down though, but now I’m paying for the water I was guzzling earlier! If you don’t mind me asking, why are you injecting in the loo?’

She looked confused.

Ah…bathroom.’ I corrected myself. I keep forgetting that even though we allegedly speak the same language, I spend a lot of time rephrasing what I say here in the US to make myself understood.

‘I always do,‘ she said. ‘Some of my friends and family get uncomfortable around needles,‘ she said. ‘So I use the restrooms. I don’t want to upset them. Where do you inject?’

I finished washing my hands. ‘I use a pump,’ I said. ‘But I always would just inject wherever I was – I never used the bathroom. But that was my choice. My attitude has always been that if someone has a problem with seeing me do my diabetes stuff, look away. And grotty…um…dirty bathrooms are not the place to manage my diabetes. Not that these bathrooms are dirty – they’re spotless!’

‘Do you like the pump? I’ve read a lot about them. I’ve only had diabetes for a year.’

I could see in her face that she really wanted to talk. And I really wanted to talk to her.

But I was at Madison Square Garden, and Billy Joel was playing. And I wanted to get back out there and keep dancing and singing and enjoying the gig too.

‘I do,’ I said. ‘I’ve been using a pump for almost 14 years now and a CGM for about 5. For me, it’s the right choice for managing my diabetes as best I can. If you are interested in hearing what people think, maybe have a read of some diabetes blogs. I find that they give the best – and usually most unbiased – views of diabetes technology and treatments.

Yes, I have started to read some really great blogs that have helped me. It’s so great to find people who are going through the same things. It makes me feel like I am gong to be okay.’

You are,‘ I told her. ‘Really; you are.’ I looked at her square in the eye, hoping to help her understand.

Right. I’m going to head back out there. But it’s been lovely meeting you. Good luck with everything. And enjoy the rest of the gig. Hope your sugars come back down soon.’

As I walked out of the bathroom, the cleaners continued to wipe up the basins and clean out the cubicles.

I ran down the stairs and took my seat just as the piano intro to ‘And So It Goes‘ was being played, and squeezed my husband’s hand.

‘You good?’

I looked around the stadium, at the thousands of people in the room and wondered what the odds were of me and another PWD bumping into each other. I shook my head a little and smiled.

Yes, babe.’ I replied. ‘I’m so good.’

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