Today is November 14th world diabetes day http://www.worlddiabetesday.org/ the theme of this year’s campaign is diabetes in children and adolescents. There is unfortunately no cure for either type I or II diabetes making every single day, diabetes day, in the lives of the estimated 246 million people with the disease.
It was mainly out of curiosity when I sent him my first email in 2000, introducing myself as a fellow type I diabetic and Ghanaian born, just like he is. I wanted to know what it was like to live with this condition in Ghana, West Africa. His childhood friend had given me his email address when he discovered I was a diabetic.
E had just turned 25 and had been living with type I diabetes since he was 12 years old. Diagnosed while in, a boarding, secondary school E was taken to the hospital by school officials after being sick for a week and was initially diagnosed with malaria. He endured three weeks of malaria treatment almost at death’s doorstep before being correctly diagnosed with type I diabetes. E got through secondary school and college visiting a clinic early morning before his first class and in the evenings after dinner for his insulin injections with cash in his hands for payments.
My blood glucose was tested once a week I carried and still carry powdered glucose in little plastic sachets with me everywhere, I started administering my own injections once I got out of college. (He wrote)
Now an adult E, struggles often having to make difficult choices between buying insulin and or food and keeping a roof over his head.