By Nickoy Montaque

The suffering and pain my mother went through with her battling of diabetes is considered an unforgettable experience. It led to her departure from this life and has given the family a horrible wound. It has been one year and thirteen days and I know it is by God’s help we are getting through such an experience.

In 2012, when my mother began to lose her vision, it started to be very difficult and stressing for the family. I began to feel doubt and become fearful of the worst happening to my mom, which is her going totally blind. The diabetes had started to deteriorate her organs more and more. I was now in 5th Form at school and felt helpless, going all over Jamaica to seek a solution for her to regain her sight. We tried everything requested by doctors but nothing was effective enough, so her sight got worse as the months and the days went by.

In 2014 things started to take a more drastic turn as doctors predicted she was heading down the “End Stage” of diabetes, which is renal failure. I started to take more responsibility regarding her care and made appointments for her to see kidney specialists. I was only eighteen. Luckily, I got in touch with the best kidney specialist on the island and made a consultation appointment. The consultation was very accurate. Her eyes became even worse, causing her to quit her job.  Her vision was down to 15%. That became very stressful on me as I was an only child. I knew school was no longer in play for me. My mom was later placed on a kidney transplant list, as recipient number thirty-five. It was hard but my family and I stuck by her side and gave our support, which led to her being less stressed.

Unfortunately, in late September 2015, she took a drastic turn. Her legs and face were severely swollen, which was a result of one of her kidneys totally shutting down. She had to be admitted in the hospital. Upon starting at home dialysis, it was proving not to be effective on her. I started to be petrified of the worst outcome of death. There was no progression with the treatment. She had okay days of little or no pain, and horrible days of constant pain. In April 2016, both kidneys failed. I became terrified. Doctors spoke of how little was left to be done. On May 11th, 2016, a horror story became real as my mom succumbed to this horrible illness of diabetes.

It has been a year and thirteen days but it still feels like yesterday. My family and I have experienced this. This is a story which has marked my life and motivated me.

Rest in peace, mom.

Nickoy Montaque is a Criminal Justice major here at Monroe College.