I was on clinic duty last Monday. When I was told by the nurses that there was supposed to be one new case to be referred, I waited at the support service room. I waited and waited and waited… and got bored waiting.
So I decided to call an old client of mine, Kak Mimi, whom I had not contacted for a while. I’m so glad I made that call. She has a load of problems on her shoulders but was too shy to seek help. The moment I called to ask how she was doing, only then did she start telling me the problems she was facing.
Kak Mimi stays about 1 1/2 hour drive from Ipoh, so I can’t simply drop everything and go visit her as and when I like. I need to properly plan my visits. Coincidentally, another client of mine, Rubi, who I had lost contact with for some time, contacted me recently after she got my number from Kak Mimi. You see, they stay in the same town and know each other well. Rubi had lost her handphone earlier and lost my number with it. So she was unable to contact me after she got herself a new phone and number.
During the early stages after I was assigned as Rubi’s buddy, she was still rather shy and didn’t talk much. We only met once at the hospital, and before I managed to gain her full trust, we lost contact. That was until Rubi met Kak Mimi and found out that Kak Mimi too knows me. I guess Rubi had more confidence in me after listening to Kak Mimi’s stories about how Buddies and I have been helping the family. So she got my number from Kak Mimi and finally contacted me via whatsapp. She was pleasantly surprised to find out that I actually still remember her.
Since I am planning to visit Kak Mimi, I might as well visit Rubi during the same trip. Am hoping to visit them by early next week.
Meanwhile yesterday I went to visit Zainab. She stays in Ipoh, and so I didn’t really have to plan ahead to visit her. I just needed to find out when she’d be home during the daytime (she works on shifts at a factory). When I found out she was home yesterday, I immediately went to visit her, with some supply of groceries bought earlier using money donated by some generous friends of mine.
Only Zainab and her older daughter (fondly called kakak) were home. The younger child (Adik) was at school. Kakak goes to school in the afternoon session. Zainab’s husband, Zaki, had to go to the hospital for his routine blood test.
After all these years, Zainab remains the sole bread winner for the family. Zaki did get jobs from time to time, but always ended up quitting with all sorts of excuses… tak larat… susah kerja malam… pekerja lain semua pekerja asing… and whatever other excuses. In the end, Zainab herself gave up and told him to just stay home and take care of the kids. Zainab herself has hypertension in addition to her HIV, but despite the stress she has to face at work, she never even thought of quitting.
Anyway, Kakak whispered something to Zainab while I was there. I was wondering what it was about. Apparently the girl wanted her mother to ask me about this year’s Family Day. This family is a regular for our Family Day, and the 2 girls always look forward the annual event. I haven’t started inviting my clients yet for this year’s event as the board has not decided on the venue yet. I will have to contact every client on my list once the board has made that decision.
Okay, so one home visit done this week. My next visit will be to the homes of Kak Mimi and Rubi.