Noncedo Gulwa

32 yrs diag 2001

I am Noncedo Ruth Gulwa. I am thirty two year old, mother of a seven year old baby boy who is in grade one. His father passed away in a car accident. Then in 2001 I was diagnosed HIV positive. I got tested cause I had TB and was very very sick. I couldn’t tell my parents cause 1) I got pregnant and the child does not have a father and 2) Now I’m positive 3) I just dropped out of school. I told them that I have TB. But the thing that I’m positive haunted me.

As time went by I got more and more sick now I had to tell my mother and my mother told my father and my siblings. They were shocked but hid it from me. One day I got more sick and my brother took me to Mapongwana day hospital and my friend Faith was there supporting me. They transferred me to Kaarl Bremmar Hospital cause I was dehydrated. When I got there I was in a coma for a week.

The only time I remember it was then. They could not wait for the ambulance cause I was dying. I stayed in Kaarl Bremmar Hospital for three weeks. Then I had a light stroke. But my family and friends were with me. My boyfriend moved away. Now I was more frustrated cause I couldn’t believe that he could leave me just like that. After a few months I met this guy and I love him and I told him about my status he was fine with that and we are still together till today.

I would like to thank Mrs Clarck and Corol who were with me all the way for the visits and their concern about me and my family. And also I would like to thank Pumla who informed me about Yabonga cause now I’m a youth counsellor at Yabonga. They show me that being HIV positive is not the end of the world it’s a new beginning of a new life. Thanks to Yabonga, Pumla, my friends, Faith my boyfriend, my mother, father, siblings, Mars Clarck and Corol.

Now I’m on ARV’s and my CD4 count is 469.9. I am free about my status cause I know that there are people who are with me.

I would like to tell other people to get tested so that they could live a long life and know their status before they get sick.