What do you get when you combine 28 golden hours, several cups of cholent, and the greatest bunch of "Friends with Diabetes"? Of course, it could only be...

F.W.D. Girls' Shabbos 5761

Erev Shabbos Parshas Pinchas. We reach Monsey in the afternoon, and enjoy a scrumptious snack. Before we settled down fully in our private sleeping quarters, we are presented with a stunning variety of useful souvenirs, tastefully arranged and beautifully presented.

What a unique sensation to be standing around one table, all of us, checking our BGs. We compare and contrast the various meters and cases. Some of us have just met for the first time, but we already feel like old acquaintances, sharing a part of our lives with which few people can readily identify.

After Kabbalas Shabbos, we stroll over to the home of Rebbetzin Weismandl. Her insights provide some thought-provoking conversation starters all the way back to the Meisels' apartment. Rabbi Meisels demonstrates the proper techniques of checking BGs on Shabbos. Taking our insulin for the meal also proves to be an eye-opening lesson, as we share tips and experiences. This is hands-on learning at its enjoyable and practical best!

After the delicious meal, Rabbi Meisels discusses some fascinating educational topics. We learn about vitamin supplements and the body's reaction to food at different times during the day. He also clarifies some perspectives in hashkafah that leave us refocused and refreshed. By the time we retire for the night, we are exhausted, but exhilarated.

We wake up early on Shabbos morning, eager to make the most of every coming minute. The next few hours are pleasantly filled with davening, conversation, and relaxing walks down calm, quiet Monsey streets. The meal provides another opportunity to learn and share with each other. Rabbi Meisels presents a thorough halachic outlook on fasting. We are later treated to a very inspirational shiur on emunah and bitachon by one of Monsey's foremost mechanchos.

We explore Monsey's sights together and find that there is so much we can gain from one another. By the time shalosh seudos rolls around, we forget that some of us met for the first time barely twenty-four hours earlier. We participate avidly as Rabbi Meisels explains the various diets being touted today.

The atmosphere is comfortable and easy. We have time for only a few slow songs before our wonderful hostess gives us a short speech to leave us with plenty of wholesome food for thought.

Reluctantly, we watch as the last moments of an unbelievable Shabbos experience slip through our fingers. We cannot stop the hands of the clock from their patient ticking, but we can preserve the memory of our very special Shabbaton for a long while. The spiritual and physical benefits we derived will surely last us for many more Shabbasim to come, iy"h!

One of the participants of the girls' Shabbaton