Ryan Pasqualle tells us how having diabetes led to depression and a suicide letter but thankfully with the support of his family he pushes on every day.
My story starts when I was 7 years old. Wherever we went, I needed to use the toilet less than five minutes after leaving the house. My parents we very concerned, because it would happen anywhere, no matter if I drank water or not. I was eating loads and was losing weight!
One Thursday evening, my dad went to our local pharmacy to find out what was wrong. The pharmacist gave him a urine container and told him to bring back a sample of my urine to have it tested. After my father got the urine and returned it to the pharmacist, he told him to take me to the doctor.
We went to the doctor on Friday and the following day the doctor phoned to say that I had diabetes and we had to go immediately to hospital.
Minutes after we got the news, my mom and sister rushed me to the hospital to get treated. The doctors gave me amazing treatment and got my blood glucose levels down to a decent level.
Life turned upside down
Finding out that I had to take insulin every day for the rest of my life was a massive shock. I had no way of knowing how to cope with it. It wasn’t only the fact that I have diabetes, it was the fact that I had no idea what diabetes was. I’d never heard of it before. Thankfully, the doctor was very helpful; he took a lot of his time to explain what diabetes was. After he explained it, I had somewhat of a grasp on my illness.
It took me round about two weeks to be discharged from hospital. I had no idea how I would go through my day-to-day life with my newly found illness, but my family and doctors supported me every step of the way.
It took me years to really get a hang of my diabetes, it was about three to four years to get my blood glucose levels semi under control.
Depression and suicidal thoughts
Having diabetes really took its toll on me; it led to me being depressed and writing a suicide letter. However, my dad found the letter and rushed to fetch me from school and took me to hospital to get help for my depression.
I wasn’t happy about being in a psychiatric ward, it made me feel like I was put in a jail, but I couldn’t be mad at my family because they were only looking out for me.
I stayed in that hospital for more than three months. It was tiring to have your every move watched, you weren’t allowed to do anything, not even have your phone on you. But after I was discharged, I was so happy, because I came home to loving family, and I was extremely happy to see my dog.
We are only trying to survive
Every day is a challenge for a person living with diabetes. We must live our lives watching what we do and eat. There are days where we can’t even eat an ice cream in warm weather, because the heat from the sun pushes our readings up.
It’s tough living like this. Our lives are in constant danger, and it’s our duty to control it, but it’s difficult to control it when all you want is to be like a normal child. All you want to do is eat what other kids eat, drink what they drink, and live how they live. People will call us sick, weird, different, but we’re normal, our lives just have extra tasks to do daily. We aren’t weird, we are only trying to survive.