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Whatever It Takes - Season 1 - Episode 10
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Source: coolval22
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I was now in seventh grade and preparing for my exams. School was getting more and more
interesting and the anti aids club had since grown and had a lot of members.

The bell rang we had come to the end of our lessons but that also meant it was time for the anti aids club meeting. We met twice a week that being Wednesday and Friday this particular day was Wednesday. I excitedly rushed out to the home economics class where the meetings were always held.

Our patron Mr Chipanta was already waiting for us and members were still pouring in. So much
had changed since the club was introduced and so many kids had come forth to testify their own
experience with the disease. It was so disheartening sometimes but sharing the experience
seemed to help heal a lot of broken hearts.


We settled down and went through the usual programme which had become routine. We began with sharing any more knowledge we had gained on the ground and how we were all helping those living with aids.


A little boy of about ten years old stood up and walked to the front to give his testimony.

” Yesterday I overheard my mother telling my uncle that my father died of AIDS and that she was also infected. Is she going to die? Will I lose both my parents like that? Because my father passed on only last month. I’m really scared.”

I felt pools of water gather in my eyes I had promised myself not to cry. I had promised to be
strong in the face of adversity. I stared blankly at the boy and he was so torn up. I blinked causing


the tears to drop.

” What’s your name kid?” Our patron finally asked the boy
“My name is Kennedy Chinyama.” He answered
” Oh my gosh!” I exclaimed inside .


That spoiled the rest of the meeting as my thoughts shifted to
my sister. You all remember Mr Chinyama right? Well he didn’t die the time we had seen him. He
had made a miraculous recovery and here I was listening to his son announcing his death. From
hearsay, people attributed his recovery to an herbal medicine one of his family members who had travelled from solwezi had given him after they begged he be discharged so he can die peacefully
from home.

I had no words for the boy but luckily Mr Chipanta took his time to explain gently issues
surrounding the virus. And how one being infected with the virus isn’t the end of the world.


By the time I was getting back home I was drained and all I wanted was to have a siesta. I figured it wasn’t necessary to let my family know about one tragic piece of information. I had just entered the yard when lubuto ran to me. He was nine years then. Between us was a five year old difference. He had since been enrolled into school and was doing his first grade while my eleven year old sister was in third grade.

” Suba Suba hurry up we’ve been waiting for you. There are some parcels back inside and a
letter.” He jumped up in excitement

” What did you just say? Lubuto you know I hate it when you pull my legs like that.” I reasoned
with him .


But he quickly grabbed me by my arm and deliriously led me inside the house. My eyes bulged out
at the sight of the many parcels that greeted my eyes.

” What’s happening here?” I questioned
” We have received all these and a letter. Father Mambwe said we should first read the letter
before opening the parcels.” Father answered enthusiastically

Instead of going to put my plastic bag containing books in the bedroom, I folded it and sat on it and
immediately tore the letter open which I proceeded to read loudly.


” To our Zambian Family, hope you are all well
We terribly miss you. We know we didn’t write in time but this was because we were organising
some fundraising events to raise enough to help you and the whole family. How is our best pal
‘Moon’ ? We hope you are still taking care of her as we instructed you. In each box are specific
instructions of how you will split the gifts. We hope you love them and they help you in the long
run.

P.S let Moon be the first to open then box.

Write back to acknowledge receipt.

Much love Amber and Sheridan.” I finished reading and everyone was jubilant. ” Open Mweshi’s box hurry up.” Mother excitedly instructed and Mweshi slowly opened her box
and on top was another letter personally addressed to her. As she couldn’t read I also took the
liberty of doing it.

” Our Full Moon, hope you are well. We have good news for you because we love you and want
you to stay alive. Medicine has made tremendous discovery in the treatment of the virus only it’s
not yet in your country. In your box is a six month supply of stavudine an anti retroviral drug to help
boost your immune system. If you take it to the tee you will experience a renewed energy.

Coupled with that are supplements to suppress the effects of the drug. These are in form of food.
We also send you our favourite toys. Sheridan as sent the blanky to keep you warm as well. The
rest are some clothes for you to wear and of course a Nikon camera for you to take pictures with.


please make sure you Send us pictures in the follow up correspondence and tell sunshine to write soon.”

We were all tongue tied it was too much good news for a day. I even forgot about the events that had occurred at school.

We all later scurried for our parcels and tore them open. There was jubilation in the house. The
funny thing came to trying out the food that was sent .


” Yaba mwe Bana muleumfwa te sopo iyi nalya nomba?” (You kids must learn to behave. Haven’t
I just eaten soap?) Mother said spitting what was in her mouth and we all cracked up with
laughter..that was the highlight of the day…


***************************


A moment of silence to our brothers, sisters, mothers, fathers and friends who have lost their lives to AIDS.

Indeed if you aren’t infected you are most likely affected.

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