“It’s okay,” I hurried to reassure her. ”Noooo,” she screamed. ”Mum, tell me that’s not true.” ”Its true.” ”How could that be?” Aka asked at us both, bewildered, ”….does it mean…Daddy?” She stopped in confusion.
”I really don’t know,” Nma answered her unspoken question. ”What’s going to happen now?” Aka started crying.
”I know it’s a shock,” I said gently. ”But things have changed a lot and HIV is no longer the death sentence it used to be.With treatment, many people live normal lives with HIV.”
”Everybody will find out and we will be ostracised,” said Aka. It appeared she hadn’t heard a word I’d said.
”No one needs to find out,” Nma spoke sharply to her daughter. ”You are not to tell a soul, promise me.”
”But Mum..!’ ”Promise me NOW!”
”I only wanted you to know because I have no one else to tell,” Nma’s voice broke and she sobbed quietly.
It was as if seeing her mum cry sobered Aka. Wiping her own tears, she tentatively reached out to Nma and gave her a hug. ”Its okay, Mum,” she whispered.
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