Languages
Page last updated at 16:23 GMT, Friday, 6 February 2009

Lesotho Aids diary: Orphan

The BBC, in conjunction with Medecins Sans Frontieres, is following the lives of seven people from the community of St Rodrigue, in Lesotho, who will share their hopes and fears as they each struggle to live with and work through the country's HIV/Aids crisis.


Mahlape Moiloa | Orphan | St Rodrigue

Mahlape Moiloa

I take medication because I have the HIV infection. I have been sick for a year. I was infected when my mother gave birth to me.

I walked very far to get St Rodrigue. I ran so it took me about 2 hours. It takes about four hours to walk. My cousin came here with me to keep me company.

I live with my grandmother and two brothers. One is 37 and the other is 18 years old.

My brother said I had pimples on my face and that it made me look ugly
My mother died. It was a very long time ago, when I was very little. At the time I didn't know that she died of HIV/Aids, but I learned as I grew up.

I got sick. I got headaches. I couldn't sleep well. I also had diarrhoea. And that's when my grandmother brought me here.

They did a test. After the test, they gave me counselling and taught me about taking the medication.

It feels OK when I take my medication and the diarrhoea is gone.

I am happy when I take the tablets.

Grandmother laughed

Initially when I found out that I was HIV-positive, I was very hurt and miserable. But since I started taking the medication, it's much better.

It was hurtful because my brothers stigmatized me, saying that I had HIV/Aids. My brother said I had pimples on my face and that it made me look ugly.

It really hurt me when he said that. And that my grandmother laughed at what they were saying.

But I don't care what they say any more. I am used to taking my medication so I feel better now. That's why I don't care what they say.

Here at the clinic, nurse Me Lucy (Lerata) has made me feel better. Me Lucy told me not to listen to them.

I visit the clinic once a month. I come to pick up medication and to see the nurse.

New faces

I don't have any friends at school because I am afraid. I feel that they may stigmatize me more than at home.

I used to have friends at school before I knew I was HIV-positive, but I stopped spending time with them because I thought they might find out that I'm taking medication.

Now, I am happy to see new faces here at St Rodrigue because they talk to me appropriately. Some encourage me to take my medication.

I am also happy knowing that my whole story will be told to the world, because HIV is not a secret any more.

It's important to talk about it because I have accepted it, and I am used to it.

When I grow up, I want to be a nurse and help people get well, like I have been helped to get well.


If you have any questions you would like to ask Mahlape Moiloa , please use the form below.

Name
Your E-mail address
Town & Country
Phone number (optional):
Comments

The BBC may edit your comments and not all emails will be published. Your comments may be published on any BBC media worldwide.



Name

Your E-mail address

Town & Country

Phone number (optional):

Comments

The BBC may edit your comments and not all emails will be published. Your comments may be published on any BBC media worldwide.




Print Sponsor


RELATED INTERNET LINKS
The BBC is not responsible for the content of external internet sites


FEATURES, VIEWS, ANALYSIS
Has China's housing bubble burst?
How the world's oldest clove tree defied an empire
Why Royal Ballet principal Sergei Polunin quit

PRODUCTS & SERVICES

Americas Africa Europe Middle East South Asia Asia Pacific