One Woman’s Indomitable Spirit
Written by Joseph R. Sconzo and published in El Heraldo, July 2003
There appears to be a corollary between suffering and success, between suffering and achievement, indeed, between suffering and sainthood. A long time ago, circa 300 B.C., Mencius said: “When Heaven is about to confer a “blessing” on any man, it first exercises his mind with suffering…” In examining the lives of individuals who have distinguished themselves in philosophy, in the arts, in statesmanship and in religion, more often than not, that individual has risen to the top despite poverty, illness or misfortune. Indeed, that individual, one finds, has borne his “cross” with dignity, with courage and with a fierce determination to overcome that “obstruction” in his life which mars his health, his happiness, his peace of mind and his ability to climb the ladder of success.
There is such a stalwart soul among us, Roberta Ruggiero by name, who, for far too many years, was so stranger to suffering, who sought remedies from dozens of doctors, therapists and so-called specialists, to no avail, who swallowed literally thousand of prescriptive pills and suffered multiple adverse side reactions to no avail, and who, finally, underwent the supreme indignity that can befall one of God’s children, a psychiatric electro convulsive shock therapy, to no avail. This intrepid soul was, for all intents and purposes, a medical profession “trial and error guinea pig,” a victim of scores and scores of misdiagnosis.
All of the above “treatments” notwithstanding, Roberta’s symptoms persisted. Indeed, in some cases, they were magnified. Symptoms such as depression, insomnia, crying spells, phobias, suicidal tendencies, headaches, fainting or blackout spells, vertigo, sweating, rapid heart beats and severe fatigue to name a few. A lesser soul would have thrown in the towel, would have abandoned all hope of effecting a “miraculous” cure, would have resigned herself to whatever “fate” had in store for her. Not Roberta Ruggiero! A highly competent South Florida osteopathic doctor, Dr. Author Ecoff, suggested she take a Glucose Tolerance Test and, lo and behold, it was ascertained that Roberta was suffering from a severe case of functional hypoglycemia. From that moment on, Roberta was determined to learn all that she could about hypoglycemia until, today, her book,
The Do’s and Don’ts of Hypoglycemia (in its third edition), was “chosen among the top best medical books in public libraries,” by the prestigious American Library Journal. This superb book, which Roberta dedicates as follows: “To every hypoglycemic—particularly those who have been mistakenly told their symptoms were “all in their head” has not only received literally thousands of testimonials from the rank and file of the previously afflicted who have enormously benefited from her experience and her wisdom, she has received dozens of testimonials from the medical doctors, not only in America, but throughout the world as to the efficacy of the programs she suggested for the treatment of hypoglycemia. Roberta’s masterful book, The Do’s and Don’ts of Hypoglycemia, may be purchased at any bookstore or at www.hypoglycemia.org for the nominal price of $14.95.
Hypoglycemia is defined as having an abnormally low concentration of sugar in the blood whereas diabetes is defined as involving an insulin deficiency and characterized by as excess of sugar in the blood and urine. Diabetes and Hypoglycemia is a very serious health challenge to Hispanic Americans. In 2000, of the 30 million Hispanics in the United States, about 2 million, or 10.2 percent, had been diagnosed with diabetes whereas 30% of Puerto Ricans and 19% of Cuban Americans had diabetes in the same study. Therefore, it behooves Hispanic Americans, as well as Americans of every nationality, to purchase, read and absorb this definitive work by one who has truly “been there.”
Shakespeare said: “The evil that men do lives after them, the good is oft interred with their bones.” That certainly is not true in the case of Brooklyn-born Roberta Ruggiero. Already, her good works has benefited countless millions across the globe and long after she departs this world her “legacy” will continue to benefit countless millions yet unborn.