We’re big fans of the fighting force that is Denise Ryan.
Since being diagnosed with Lyme disease, the Rathfarnham woman has really come out swinging – organising Into The West screenings, selling T-shirts and dreaming up mad schemes to help her raise the cash she needs for treatment in the States.
Yesterday, her story was covered in a Humans of Dublin post. And to say it will stop you in your tracks is an understatement.
It’s a story of how the everyday can suddenly become a battle to survive, and how that battle can unearth aspects of someone’s personality that neither they nor anyone else knew existed.
“I was in love, once! It wasn’t until my mid-twenties though because I’d always been really afraid of getting my heart broken. But then I met a guy. We were together for nearly 2 years and while I was still terrified the whole time of getting hurt, we laughed so much together and he really brought me out of my shell. I was crazy about him so I decided it was worth the risk! I did get my heart broken in the end but I would never give back that experience, because everything can change so quickly.
When I started getting sick I still thought everything would work out ok, but my illness became serious really fast and I found out there was no treatment available here. Since then I’ve appreciated every memory, both good times and bad and the even heart break. Nothing prepares you for something like this, I’ve had to find more courage and perseverance than I ever thought I could have. I want so much to make new memories too so I’ve been trying to fundraise to go to the U.S. as soon as possible for the medical care that could save my life.
There are some things I’ll do differently if I get a second shot. I’ll try to let people in more and not be so afraid of getting hurt. Whether it would go well or not doesn’t even matter. It’s the chance to live life and even make mistakes and get back up to try again each day, that’s what matters.”