AIDS is a disease of the immune system caused by human immunodeficiency virus (HIV). Malaysian are mostly not aware about AIDS. How do they get AIDS? This is a good link to read more on HIV/AIDS (suitable for laymen) -> AVERT international AIDS charity
Human don't actually "get" AIDS. One person might get infected with HIV, and later might develop AIDS. You can get infected with HIV from anyone who's infected, even if they don't look sick and even if they haven't tested HIV-positive yet. The blood, vaginal fluid, semen, and breast milk of people infected with HIV has enough of the virus in it to infect other people. Most people get the HIV virus by:
- having sex with an infected person
- sharing a needle (shooting drugs) with someone who's infected
- being born when their mother is infected, or drinking the breast milk of an infected woman
Today I have a story to share on AIDS. Well, Mr A started to 'play' with drugs at the age of 23 years old. He started by taking oral stimulant drug. Later on, he switched to injection type of drug. The problem here is needle-sharing. For them to get the daily 'high', they need to spend between RM70-RM100+ per day!! (calculate per month, they can buy BMW!)
Usually it will take 10 years from the time being infected to the development of AIDS. For my patient, he is just 7 years since he started injecting various drug of abuse. At the age of 30, he is in the stage of AIDS. Few months back, he is a happy person, who comes daily to drink methadone. Young guy, with the heart to change, he no longer into the dark world of addiction.
Too bad, his body cannot take it anymore, and there it goes.. immune system of the body gave up.. HIV virus getting stronger and replicate rapidly. Symptoms come. He complained of loss of appetite, nausea and vomiting, lethargy, loss of weight..
He is no longer the joyful person that i know. Now he hardly able to walk, talk, suffering in pain everyday. Now i deliver methadone to his house daily (i know i am not suppose to do that according to methadone dispensing policy, but who cares about policy, sometimes we have to change according to situation). Really heart broken and sad each time i see pass the methadone to him. Living in a kampung style home, with only his mother to take care of him, really make me sad.
The other day, he came to methadone clinic, with his brother carrying him. Somehow, I feel tear coming out, but i have to control. Even a few of my methadone client also cried. Methadone clinic in KK Sungai Tekam Utara is the best so far. All my client are very close with each other. This 9 months I am working here, there is a bond that i develop with them. They trust me and willing to share with me any information that I request. Even they willing to do anything i ask them to do.
Each day driving pass Mr A house, I will feel that I am lucky person. I have a fixed salary, family, friends. I can eat any nice food that I want to. I can afford to go holiday whenever I wish. A few of my friend say that I am a positive-thinking person. Well, I have to think positively, why would you want to make yourself suffer. Why would you want to be angry with silly thing? Just live happily and enjoy your life to the fullest. Go and learn the thing that you wish to learn, it is never too old to learn. Go holiday..
I don't know when Mr A will leave this world, but from my experience, he may not live long. So all I can do is to visit him daily and spend few minutes to talk with him. Maybe he dont need to suffer anymore after he leave this world. One thing I learn indirectly from him is .. to think before you do anything.. For his case, he choose to inject and share needle. By the time he regret, it is too late. For us, we should think twice before making any decision..