I was on clinic duty in Taiping today. As always, I make it a point to visit Dahlia and her children whenever I'm in Taiping. Today more so because Dahlia's 16 year old son, Zain, will register at one of the MRSMs next week after scoring good results for his PT3 last year.
There was only one case referred to me at the hospital, and so I stayed at the hospital for just about an hour or so, before moving on to visit Dahlia and her children. I got to Dahlia's house right on time. They had just came back from Zain's old school to settle some matters including getting his school leaving cert.
Just as I got in, I saw Dahlia's youngest son. Remember the shock I got some time last year, when I was told Dahlia gave birth to a baby boy, when I (and the docs and nurses at the ID clinic) didn't even know she was pregnant? That story here. My, how the boy has grown. He's so cute and chubby! Looking at him, nobody would have thought he's HIV+. While in most cases, mother to child transmission can be avoided if necessary precautions are taken, in Dahlia's case, she decided NOT to tell the doc & nurses at the ID clinic about her pregnancy for fear of getting scolded. And because she didn't want to get scolded, she put her baby at risk of getting infected. And based on the last 2 blood tests done, the boy is now confirmed HIV+.Which means the boy will have to take his medication all his life... unless one fine day in the future, a cure is found.
Anyway, I was there to see Zain. He did look eager to go to MRSM, although like his mother, he's also worried about all the payments. The fees... the uniforms and whatever else that he needs to buy from the college. While the list of things to be bought was given, how much each item costs was not indicated. So they have no idea how much is needed. Well, the boy is under our sponsorship programme, but then again, the funds are also limited. Hopefully there will be enough in the accounts to cover his needs. At the same time, I also told Dahlia to ask if she can apply for any financial help for her son when they go to register him next week.
As for Adila, Dahlia's eldest daughter (the one who was raped some time back and gave birth to a baby girl who is now 2 years old), she has completed her course at the culinary college, now waiting for results. And since she also sat for her SPM last year as a private candidate, she is also waiting for her SPM results. With her culinary training and her interest in business, she hopes to take a business course after SPM results are announced, and maybe one day, set up her own business in the culinary world. I really salute this girl. Despite all that she had gone through, she never gave up. In fact, she has a vision for her future. I really hope she will succeed in making her dreams come true.
While Dahlia had made various mistakes in life (tell me, who hasn't made any?), one thing I do like about her is that she stresses on the importance of education for her children. Hopefully, none of them will end up like her.