Thursday, March 26, 2009

Angels of Mercy

When I checked on Fatima on Wednesday morning, she was the brightest I have ever seen her.

I said, "Wow, you're looking great! And I can see you've already had your bath. I hope you didn't cry during your bath."

"I did. It was so painful. Why do they have to clean me?"

Later, upstairs, I got the whole story from Julie and Esther, pictured at right.

When Esther pulls back the mosquito net from Fatima's bed in the morning, Fatima greets her with a warm smile and "Good morning, auntie."

However, when it's time for her daily bath, her attitude changes. Fatima hates to be bathed because of her open, oozing wounds. The blisters on her thigh have opened up recently. She tells Julie and Esther, "You people are wicked!" However, that is soon forgotten, and she becomes pleasant once again.

Fatima would spend 24 hours lying down in bed if Esther would allow her. Even when she eats, she wants to be lying down. Esther decided that she needs to start sitting in a chair. When Esther put her on a chair, Fatima said, "I will fall! I will fall!"

Esther said, "Ok."

Then Fatima adjusted herself on the chair and sat there for half an hour.

Esther has been the matron of Bezer Home since 2004. She is HIV+ herself and lives in Bezer Home with her three children. She is responsible for everything that goes on in the home. I marvel at how well Esther handles our toughest cases. She has just the right mixture of pampering and tough love for our full-blown AIDS patients. And she does the jobs that no one else wants to do.

Julie, also HIV+, has been our sewing program manager since October 2008. She does a great job upstairs and then helps Esther in the evenings and mornings with Fatima.

When I saw Julie and Esther dressed in their matching outfits, I just had to take their photo. I am so thankful for their ministry to Fatima. We pray that Fatima will recover as much as possible and go on to live a normal life like Julie and Esther.

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