Monday 17th of December we went to the HIV clinic in Erasmus MC in Rotterdam. All the four girls were checked and Sarah was also seen by the pediatric cardiologist. Everything was good, so we were all relieved and happy that this part was over!!! The doctor asked the girls if there were any questions they would like to ask. And Mary said that she would like to meet Brenda.
Who is Brenda? She is a girl who came with her mother from Africa, 16 years ago, her mother died and Brenda was HIV+ and was taken into a Dutch family. The mother wrote a little book about Brenda and compared the HIV virus with a little dragon that lived in her blood. Brenda has to take medicines to keep the dragon asleep, when she would stop to take the medicines, the dragon would wake up and make her sick. We use this book to explain the children their HIV+ status and it works very good. Last year I got a poster with Brenda's picture and the children were very impressed with her, with the openness of Brenda about her HIV+ status. especially Mary wanted to meet her.
The nurse in the hospital brought her into contact with Brenda and her family and today we went to see them. On this picture you see Sarah (left) Brenda with Catherine and Mary at the right. Helen was also around, but she was playing with another little girl. It was very special, Mary and Brenda are almost the same age, they both became 18 in November. there are so many similarities, only one lives in Holland and the other one lives in Africa.
Brenda with Catherine
They were all drawing and painting together in the kitchen, while they were talking and laughing. It was a very good day and we all enjoyed it. Email and Facebook addresses were exchanged, so there will be more contacts in the future.
The news I get from Amecet is good, there are no very sick children and also no new children came in. so I believe that our prayers for a good and peaceful Christmas were answered!