THEY WILL ASK thee as to what they should spend on others. Say: "Whatever of your wealth you spend shall [first] be for your parents, and for the near of kin, and the orphans, and the needy, and the wayfarer; and whatever good you do, verily, God has full knowledge thereof." - Al-Baqarah (2:215)

Friday, 31 October 2008

A double catch!

In my blog posting last Friday, I mentioned about a guy, Majid who called to seek our support service. I mentioned that Majid sounded like a young man, and that he didn't sound depressed. Since I was rather busy last week, I told him I'd call him this week so we could meet up.

Well, I called him on Wednesday asking if he'd be free yesterday afternoon. I intended to go to our center around 3.30 pm and I thought it would be a good idea for him to come to our center as another colleague of mine would also be at the center then. Majid agreed. He has flexi working hours and so it wasn't a problem for him to meet up during normal office hours.

So yesterday we met. Majid actually got to the center earlier than I did but my colleague was already there. No, I wasn't late - Majid was early. (tak nak kalah!)

I was right - Majid is a young chap in his twenties - young enough to call me makcik but he got rid of the 'mak' and called me 'cik' instead... (clever chap!) :) He wasn't depressed either, so yep, I was right again.

Of course, when he first found out about his HIV infection, he felt like dying. But he got over it fast enough, and soon, he was already leading a normal life.

Majid is actually a healthy young chap. He looks healthy, he feels healthy and nobody (not even himself) would ever guess that he has HIV. He was never involved with drugs. Yes, he did have unprotected sex a few times (two or three times he said) before this but those days are over. Even his CD4 count is still very high despite his HIV infection.

So, how did he find out about his HIV infection?

You see, early last year he went to the hospital to donate blood. After tests were done on his blood sample, the hospital authorities called him to inform him about the infection. Imagine how he felt at that time. He didn't want his family to know but he needed to talk to someone. I guess his first appointment at the HIV clinic did not coincide with our clinic duty and so SN did not refer him to us. He did get our brochure though, but wasn't sure how to go about contacting us. Yes, the contact number was there but I guess he simply didn't know how to take that first step.

He finally confided in his boss, who was understanding enough. Until now, his boss is the only one amongst his acquaintances who knows about his HIV status. His family, who stays in another state, is totally clueless. His house-mate (he's renting a house with another guy) doesn't know a thing either.

Well, he looks healthy, not yet on medication - so no reason for anyone to suspect anything. With his flexi working hours there's no need to tell anyone whenever he needed to go to the hospital for his appointments.

Majid is however still very much interested in our services. He wants to know more. He feels it is probably better for him if he gets involved in our activities.

After meeting up and talking to him yesterday, I felt he'd be better off as a volunteer rather than a client. All he wants anyway is activities to keep him busy. So I asked if he'd be interested to join us as a volunteer instead. And he agreed! Yayyyy!!!

So we got ourselves a double catch yesterday. We got a new volunteer - and a PLHIV at that!! Looks like our plan to start a peer support group is on track! I still need to present his application to the board for approval (just a formality really) but that shouldn't be a problem at all.


LaiPing said...

cheers for Majid! :)

Anonymous said...

Komen Pak Malim, kucing ray yg alim.

Saya tumpang gembira, kata Pak Malim sambil memeluk kera, kerana Majid setuju untuk menjadi sukarelawan, kata Pak Malim sambil meminum teh secawan.

Pi Bani said...

Hip hip hooray!

Pi Bani said...

Pak Malim:
Memang kami tak cukup sukarelawan, kata Pi Bani sambil memandang awan. Saya memang bersyukur Majid setuju, tambah Pi Bani sambil memandu laju.

Tapi awatnya sampai pi peluk kera? Tanya Pi Bani dengan muka horror!

Salt N Turmeric said...

thunderous clap for Majid. Im glad he decides to do something instead of sulking and waiting for help to come.

Mat Cendana said...

This is my first time here. I had followed the link from Mat Salo's blog.

I've read only a bit of it but that's enough to convince me of the value you're providing here. Mat Salo's friends seem to have substance:-) I've bookmarked it in StumbleUponand will come again another time.

BTW I hope you won't mind me adding your site here to my list. It's called Recovery from Drug Addiction

Pi Bani said...

Yes, I'm so glad he decided to do something positive, not only for himself but also for other PLHIVs.

Pi Bani said...

Mat Cendana:
Welcome to my blog! And thanks for linking my blog to yours. Have also added yours in my blogroll. Interesting stuff - even the title of your blog is enough to convince me.

Kak Teh said...

Pi Bani, well, I suspect it is are like a magnet.

Kak Teh lari naik atas para, baca
Pak Malim memeluk kera, betapalah kera sengsara.

Zawi said...

Happy to note that there are such people like Majid in real life. It is a win-win-win situation for Majid, HIV patients and PLHIV.

Pi Bani said...

Kak Teh:
I am like a magnet? Patutlah we all tak cukup volunteer tapi ramai clients. Opposites attract, right? (HIV+ and HIV-)

Kak Teh dah turun ke dari atas para? tanya Pi Bani sambil buat kira-kira.

Pi Bani said...

Pak Zawi:
It is indeed a win-win situation for Majid. I wish there are more PLHIVs like him. Tapi ye lah, if they themselves are not stable emotionally and/or financially, susahlah sikit nak jadi volunteer. Nanti the other PLHIVs lagi depressed dibuatnya!

Anonymous said...

Lagi komen Pak Malim, kucing ray yg alim.

Maaf, kalau mengacau, kata Pak Malim sambil meracau. Actually kera tu suka, saya peluk dia. Kera miang, kata Pak Malim sambil duduk tepi tiang.

Pi Bani said...

Pak Malim:
Apalah punya kera, rungut si kura-kura
Dengan kucing pun nak menggatal, tambahnya sambil memeluk bantal.

Kerp (Ph.D) said...

good for majid. while volunteering, he'll learn ways to handle his illness. talking about double the catch, its double delight for him!

Pi Bani said...

True, in addition to doing some good to other PLHIVs, he himself has a lot to gain by volunteering.