When the Buddies board decided to hold a training session for our volunteers on the topic “What To Do & Not To Do As A Volunteer”, and asked me to be the speaker/trainer, I decided to make it a very informal chit chat session with the volunteers, discussing the topic based on our past experiences with our clients. Oh okay, I was actually too lazy to prepare something more detailed…
But yes, the session last night was more of a discussion session. Thank God for that, because earlier during the day, I had an emergency and had to drive to Shah Alam to attend my aunt’s funeral. If I was just one of the volunteers attending the session as a participant, I could have probably given the training session a miss. But I was the trainer, and so I had no choice but to attend. Which was why I drove back to Ipoh immediately after the funeral.
It had been quite a while since we last did a training session for the volunteers. In fact it had been very difficult to get the volunteers to gather. Even for our AGM we usually get just enough quorum. And so I was quite happy this time 20 people (including myself) attended the session.
I may not be the best person to conduct the training, but I think I made the right decision to make it an informal session.
Anyway, yesterday morning I received a message from Erin, informing me that her mother, Aini, had to be hospitalised again. When she sent the message, they were still at the emergency dept, because there were no vacant beds available in the wards. This morning when I checked again with Erin, I was told that Aini was already in the ward, waiting to undergo a minor operation.
So after my asr prayer today, I decided to visit them at the hospital. The moment I got into the ward, I saw Erin waving to me. Saved me the trouble of having to go around from bed to bed to look for Aini. Aini’s mother was also by her bedside. Aini herself looked so skinny. She definitely had lost a lot of weight. For someone who is my age, she certainly looked a lot older, not because I am the awet muda type (THAT I am definitely not), but because of all her ailments. Other than HIV, she had also been struggling with kidney problems, and of late there had been so many other complications as well.
Aini’s daughter Erin had been with Aini the whole time since she was brought to the emergency dept, right to more than 24 hours later. She hadn’t even had the opportunity to get a proper meal for herself. Since it was visiting hours and there were a few of us there, I told Erin to go down and get something to eat. The poor girl, who is in her final semester at a polytechnic, had already missed 3 days of classes and will probably miss classes until the end of the week to accompany her mother at the hospital.
I know Erin is tough & strong emotionally, but I could also see from her face that she was also quite stressed out. I do hope her studies will not be affected by her mother’s health condition.
I will need to follow up with not just Aini, but also with Erin as well. She sure needs some moral support.