HONOLULU (HawaiiNewsNow) - Doctors diagnosed Susan Salviejo with diabetes when she was just eight years old. She later became addicted to crystal methamphetamine.
"I started getting into drugs when I was 19 years old and I smoked every day," she said.
Despite stints in rehab, she continued to abuse drugs after the birth of her son, Layne. She finally got clean seven years ago, after the arrival of her daughter, Serene.
"I lost my leg in 2008 through the complications of diabetes and partially drugs," recalled Salviejo. "She was in CPS custody and I got her back and I straightened my life from then on."
Salviejo leaves her Makiki apartment three times a week to go to dialysis. 2015 has been a rough year for the 40-year-old single mother. She has been hospitalized several times due to complications from her diabetes.
"I was independent in May. I became very dependent now," she said.
Salviejo is taking part in Helping Hands Hawaii's Adopt-a-Family Program. With all the bills to pay, there isn't much money left at the end of the month to spend on the children. For the holidays, she is asking for clothes for the family or a gift card to buy household supplies.
Salviejo hopes to be out of the hospital to enjoy a simple Christmas meal with her family.
"(I want) to improve my medical so I won't be struggling too hard," she said.
Call Helping Hands Hawaii at 440-3812 to help Salviejo and her family.