I keep on reflecting back to when I used to be a home based care provider. My experiences back then, I go to very sick persons’ homes that are living with HIV and AIDS. Most were very sad ones and some few with worth the while. I remember some faces of those who passed on after much struggles with the diseases (opportunistic infections). The ones that broke my heart were two young ladies who died and their family had to call me to come over immediately after their death.
One particular case was that of this young lady full of hope of living after seeing someone living positively with the Virus. She really wanted to move on but the OIs did not allow her to live. I got a call just a day after my last visit to her by the elder brother that she just passed on in the early hour of the morning. He requested that I come to their house that very morning.
On arriving to the house, I was taken to her bedroom where she was still lying on the bed cold. I was shocked and asked why have they not moved to a hospital or called an ambulance. They were all still in shock and didn’t know what to do at that point. With the assistance of the elder brother and younger sister I requested that they help me get her into the bathtub were I gave her a bath and single handed, dressed her up before the coffin was brought and she put into it.
I went with them to help get her death certificate from the local government area where she died. After that looking at her for the last time made me cry a lot that day because I only got to know her for four weeks and it looked like we knew each other for long. She told to me a day before she passed that she wanted to live and give other people hope to live even with HIV and AIDS.
The family was full of surprise when I ate with her on the same plate and the dad asked me if it was possible to eat with her. His question made me sad because they lacked knowledge and information about the AIDS virus.
This is one experience I will never forget.