When I take insulin, I feel comfortable and safe
How long have you been living with diabetes?
I have been living with type1 diabetes for 25 years.
How were you diagnosed?
I was young but felt tired and thirsty and had to go the toilet every ten minutes. I did not understand why. After one month, I went to the laboratory for a check-up. They tested my urine and told me that I had type 1 diabetes. I was shocked and felt that my life was finished. I was in Somalia at that time, which was going through a civil war. A year later, I went to Abu Dhabi for a full check-up and my diagnosis was confirmed. My blood glucose was at 596. On that day I started insulin treatment.
How did your diagnosis affect your family or loved ones?
My father was living with type 2 diabetes and died years later. I got my family checked for diabetes but they were not affected.
What are the most important things that have supported your diabetes care?
After a while, I started to look after myself. I now eat healthily and go to my doctor every week to check my blood glucose.
What has been your lowest point with diabetes?
When I was in Somalia, I used to cry every time that I returned from the laboratory because my blood glucose was almost always high. I would not go home for hours and find a place to sit alone, away from other people. When I returned home, I would start to cry again when my mother asked me how my health was.
Have you ever experienced issues accessing diabetes medicines, supplies and care?
Yes, when I was living in Somalia and insulin was not available.
What would you like to see change in diabetes over the next 100 years?
I would like to see people living diabetes get more care and have an easy way to cure their condition.
What do you think needs to change to improve the lives of people living with diabetes in your country?
People in my country need support for diabetes medicines like insulin and tablets. There is no proper care in place for people living with diabetes.
What does the centenary of insulin mean to you?
When I take insulin, I feel comfortable and safe.