COMPASSION IS VALENTINE LESSON :IN HIV/AIDS & CANCER CONTEXT
When one imagines the pain and challenges HIV/AIDS & cancer poses to women, one is left wondering what deadly combination this is. the two health challenges pose emotional,social,physical,psychological, spiritual and cultural challenges to women and girl children face.when one is infected with the HI virus, people around the person view her differently. in the first place, a woman is seen as one who has brought the problem to herself. Secondly, many people tend to reduce proximity as much as possible. Another bigger problem is exclusion, discrimination, rejection,exploitation and dehumanization. the infected woman suffer deep spiritual and psychosocial torture. and with realization that one is HIV positive and has a cancerous condition, it becomes too heavy to bear. the woman's fears, frustration and hopelessness triples. one fears the worst to happen-dying soon, and feeling unworthy. Many people around a woman with these condition keep asking question from a distance to know iof she is already dead. Some cancers leave these women infected with HIV with some deformations. And since people fear being rejected, some women have kept quiet hence spreading the virus and risking themselves of infections and re-infections. This goes against the strategies employed by different caregiving organizations and individuals to ensure preventions from fresh HIV infection and re-infections. As for cancer cases, palliative care becomes more complex. It is with this background that i wish to remind us to be sensitive, caring, and supportive to whoever suffers from either cancer and or HIV/AIDS. we do not need to add them more burdens. The infected women and those suffering from cancer have more than enough to deal with. The challenges they face requires compassionate responses from family, community, church, and national systems' compassionate. May this valentine day remind us to reflect on God' attributes of and so that we can learn to share it, live it and be true embodiment of the same and mean something that will add value to women and girl children suffeering fron HIV/AIDS and cancer.