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A Mother’s Wish for a Special Child

She looks at her son with a proud smile on her face as he walks slowly, limping a little, up the stage to accept his Diabetes Achiever award for having survived diabetes for more than 20 years.

Not a small feat for someone who has other special needs aside from being a type 1 diabetic; and definitely something to be proud of for a mother who takes care of a special child with diabetes.

“Sabi nila mahirap mag-alaga ng may diyabetes, pero lalo na siguro kung special child,” (They say it’s hard to take care of someone who has diabetes, more so if he is special child) says Tina Micosa. His son, Tito, is a special child with diabetes.

Tito, who is now 28, was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes since he was four years old. From then on, his survival depended on insulin injections. But with their meager resources, it wasn’t long before they had to ask for help to sustain his insulin needs.

However, aside from his basic needs to treat his diabetes, Tito has other medical needs brought about by some complications of diabetes. Tito’s eyes have already undergone laser therapy for diabetic retinopathy. He also has complications of the heart – an abnormality in heartbeat. These complications often require expensive medical tests, hospitalizations and other medications.

Tina says it’s been hard living on dole-outs for all of Tito’s medical needs. She says sometimes she loses face already while asking people for help, as she really has nothing to give back to those who help them. All she can do, she says, is to pray for all the people who have been helping them through the years.

And help does come whenever they need them – from Tito’s doctors, diabetes support groups like the Diacare Foundation (of which Tito has been a member for 12 years now), and kind-hearted people, like fellow diabetic Gary Valenciano through the Genesis Foundation – they all have supported Tito’s medications, hospitalizations and insulin needs at one point in time. Genesis, for one, has been supporting Tito’s monthly insulin needs for 13 years now.

“Hindi natin nakikita ang Diyos, pero nadarama mo siya sa mga taong tumutulong (We can’t see God but we feel his presence through those who help),” Tina says.

Despite his special needs, Tina proudly says that Tito is a good child.

She says Tito is very industrious and has his share of household chores. He is the one who takes care of their small garden in their backyard. He plants the vegetables, and takes out the weeds. He also has native chickens to tend to, which he sells for profit, to add to their daily needs. Plus, he has three dogs which he keeps for company. Aside from all this, he also helps his mother tend to their small business which is a fish ball stand.

His mother also relates that Tito has lots of friends and is well-known in their community because of his being friendly and helpful to his neighbors. He also enjoys watching TV and names Senator Bong Revilla as his favorite actor.

With regards to taking care of himself, Tina says her son knows how to inject insulin on his own and does not really need full attention with regards to his diabetes treatment.

Indeed, Tina is thankful to God for giving her a son like Tito, who despite his condition has notbeen a burden to her. She only has one wish, and that is for her to live longer so she might be able to continue taking care of Tito. “Ibinigay siya sa akin ng Diyos kaya idinadasal ko na may mga tao pa na tumulong sa akin para matulungan siya (God gave him to me, that is why I always pray that there will be people who will help me to help him),” says Tina.

Tito is living proof that one can live well and be productive even with diabetes. And his mother, Tina, proves that a mother’s love is truly unconditional and forever.

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