This is one of the saddest stories I will ever narrate on this blog. It happens to be a true story and I tell it to hopefully, change the minds of those who do not believe in HIV testing or who feel that a healthy appearance excludes the possibility of AIDS. During my internship, I was asked by my consultant to help him collect data for a study he was doing on HIV in pregnancy. It required the filling of a questionnaire so, I visited every pregnant woman who was diagnosed with HIV in the labour ward to fill it anonymously.
On that day, there was a young lady in the 1st stage of labour. She was tall, fair and quite pretty. I observed that she seemed to be in greater pain than would be expected and kept shouting at her husband “Honey rub my back!” He was in his forties, far shorter than she was, not particularly good looking, with a seriously distended abdomen (beer belly). I waited till he left to pick some items she asked for so she would feel free to answer my questions
“How old are you?” I asked
She replied that she was 25.
“What is your highest educational qualification?”
She said she had a university degree.
“What was your age of sexual debut?”
This was when she burst into tears and narrated this story. “I married my husband 2 years ago as a virgin. Earlier this year, he had a medical emergency and was rushed to hospital where he was found to have coronary heart disease. His doctor happened to run a HIV test for him and he was confirmed positive. He was placed on anti retro viral drugs (ARVs). When he came home, he did not tell me his status. Rather, he placed the ARVs on the table and told me to take them daily as they were multivitamins. I took a few and stopped, not knowing what they really were. Few months later, I tested positive during my routine antenatal tests. When I confronted him, he admitted everything and apologized. I hate him so much for doing this to my baby and I. Do you know how many men I turned down to marry him?”
By this time she was in tears, the nurses were in tears, I was wishing I didn’t even ask her any question. What a horrible story! To keep your virginity for so long only to give it to the wrong man!
Matthew7:6 “Give not that which is holy unto the dogs, neither cast ye your pearls before swine, lest they trample them under their feet, and turn again and rend you.” (kjv)
Dear reader, whether or not you are a virgin, the moral of the story is that you are responsible for keeping your HIV status negative. Don’t entrust anyone else with your responsibility; not your girlfriend, barber, hair stylist, or manicurist. You cant be sure that just because you are faithful, your partner is faithful, especially if you don’t have the committment of marriage to protect you. Do insist on a test before marriage. You will be happy you did.
I can tell you that the lady in my story had a baby girl who was immediately placed on ARVs. She has a good chance of being HIV negative for life. God’s rules are for our protection, not to harm us or deny us any pleasure. For He knows the thoughts He thinks towards us, to give us a disease-free future.