Gary Valenciano recounts time doctor said he’d only live until 44: ‘Living on His time’
Gary Valenciano, 57, looked back at the time when his doctor told him he would only live until 44 years old, and he is beyond grateful to have lived longer than expected.
The singer, known as Mr. Pure Energy, opened up about the time he was diagnosed with type 1 diabetes in his interview with TV host Toni Gonzaga on her YouTube channel last Sunday, Jan. 2. Valenciano recalled getting his diagnosis at the age of 14 and how the news was delivered to his mother.
“Binanggit ng doktor sa nanay ko (the doctor told my mother), ‘Mrs. Valenciano, a type 1 diabetic is given an average life span of 30 years from the day of diagnosis.’ I was 14,” he narrated. “So if you do the math, when I got to 44, [dapat] wala na (I should have been gone) or maybe I got to 48, but may problema na sa mata and nerve endings (but with problems with my eyesight and nerve endings).”
Valenciano then added he is proud for reaching age 57, but he believes he is not living on “borrowed time.”
“I’m not ashamed to tell people how old I am,” he admitted. “Because I’m not living on borrowed time. I’m living on His time.”
Aside from his diabetes, Valenciano also talked about his early days in show business, becoming a father, reconnecting with God, and how it shaped him as a performer.
“Every time I do ‘Take Me Out of the Dark,’ it’s never a performance. I’m speaking based on experience. I’m singing based on truth that I want to share with others,” he told Gonzaga.
Aside from type 1 diabetes, Valenciano also faced various other health problems including tuberculosis, hepatitis, an open heart surgery and kidney cancer. Despite this, he is still grateful for the life he has.
“It’s in one word that I should no longer have: life,” he said. “It’s just that I’m thankful for the life I have today.” /ra
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