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The miracle of ARVs

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Tommy’s story all began in Lesotho where he lived with his birth parents. Shortly after Tommy was born his father moved to Johannesburg to work on the mines. When Tommy was ten months old he and his mother travelled from Lesotho to Johannesburg to visit his father. On arrival in Johannesburg Tommy’s mother discovered her husband with a girlfriend.

She attempted to stab her husband and his girlfriend, which led to her arrest. Tommy was then left at a shebeen for three months until a woman eventually phoned Thea who ran an orphanage called TLC. Tommy was taken in by Thea and TLC.

Tommy was constantly sick and his doctors had done various tests but were unable to come up with a diagnosis. He was admitted to hospital. The doctors said that he had three weeks to live.

Tommy was then diagnosed with HIV at the age of three. This changed Tommy’s life as he was put on ARVs. Tommy now had the chance to be a “normal kid”; he finally had the chance to go to school. He had previously been unable to attend school because he had been too ill. “I had a lot of catching up to do and I thank God every day for my medicines because they are the only way I can live a normal life.”

Tommy found it extremely frustrating to go to school with people who are completely ignorant about AIDS and HIV. Who would have thought that in this day and age teachers would be advising their students not “share lunch boxes with people with AIDS”. They advised his fellow students to “cover their mouths with a shirt when you are around people with AIDS.” Tommy is currently a prefect at Randor School and is involved in talking to children at various different youth centres about living with HIV. He shares his story with other youths his age in the hope that it may help them.  Tommy believes that he can help and teach others from his experiences.

One comment to “The miracle of ARVs”

  1. Comment by Joseph:

    This article is not fleshy enough, this left me with many questions than information. I should have at least learned something than to read something meant for grade one kids here. HIV is now complicated and we at least need to know much about research going around towards the elimination of the virus than folk stories.
    Zimbabwe is burdened with the number of People with the Virus and all we need is more info on how people can cope both the infected and the affected and also the victories against the disease.