This just might be the saddest story you will ever read.
One Dorcas Waithera shared her heartrending life story with NaiNotepad, revealing the countless misfortunes that have befallen her since she was a young school-going girl.
Here’s her story.
Any special memories about your childhood?
I grew up in Bahati estate in Nairobi. I am the first-born. My dad was a businessman at Kirinyaga Road and my mother worked as a subordinate staff with the defunct city council. We were a happy family.
We enjoyed the warmth of the single-roomed house. I always looked forward to Sundays as dad would often treat us to a boat ride or just walk in town. I went to Morrison Primary School.
My mum confided in me that dad died of HIV/Aids complications. I was shocked and I took her for a test and she also tested positive.
Word spread and the stigma was too much to handle. Parents warned their children against playing with us for fear of being infected.
How did your mother cope with the stigma?
My mother struggled with her little salary. She used to get sick often. But things gradually got worse. We did not have enough money for food or for my sister’s education.
I did not go to college despite performing well and qualifying for university admission. I started doing odd jobs like hawking fruits in offices and salons.
In 2001, my mother’s health deteriorated and two weeks later, she passed way.
You were left with a heavy burden. How were you able to take care of your sister?
I took up the role of raising my youngest sister who was 13 years old at the time. In 2002, I got married. I was 24 years old and we were blessed with two sons, Kena Thuo and Kiama Thuo.
Life was good and luckily, I landed an administrative job. But in 2012, another blow hit me.
What do you mean?
In 2012, my husband was driving me to a work-related trip to Loitoktok and we were involved in a bad road accident. I was stuck in the wreckage of a seven-seater car. My husband injured his left leg.
We were rescued and rushed to Mbirikani Hospital and I later woke up with a fractured rib. We were transferred to Nairobi because my husband needed surgery which was successful and we were discharged.
Two weeks later, he suffered a bad headache and after doing a CT scan, the doctors said the impact on his head was severe.
He had haemorrhage that had gone unnoticed, resulting in a blood clot in his brain. A head surgery was performed but there was a swelling in his brain and two days later, he died on November 20, 2012.
Wow! That must have been tough…a widow at just 33?
It was. My sons were young, we were devastated. To make things worse, I lost my job in 2014.
I started hustling, buying cheap clothes and selling for a little profit. In 2015, I started having irregular menstrual bleeding.
My tummy started bulging and bloating. There was an abnormal hardness in my stomach. I went back to the hospital and after a series of tests, I was diagnosed with ovarian neoplasm, which is ovarian cancer.
Cancer treatment is very expensive. How are you coping?
My family and friends held a fundraiser and I went to India for treatment with my sister, Sonnie. After a series of tests, they said the tumour was so big that they could not separately identify my ovaries.
I underwent a successful surgery, but they also had to perform an abdominal hysterectomy. Recovering took time and I was in diapers and had to be bathed.
I am okay but still on drugs to date. A few months later, I lost my paternal grandmother. My sisters and I were devastated. She was the only one who helped us.
Your house burned down. What was the cause?
In September 2016, my neighbour’s house caught fire and it spread to my house. Everything was burnt, except for my three Bibles.
At that time, I was jobless and homeless. I also needed drugs and my son was sitting for his KCPE. Family friends and strangers came through for us and I am forever grateful.
Source: The Nairobian