HomeStandard StyleA day in the life of a cholera patient

A day in the life of a cholera patient

Patients receive treatment at a makeshift cholera clinic in Harare

By Laura Changamami

I woke up feeling nauseous and dehydrated. I went to my mother’s mat and woke her up, she told me to go to the toilet. I went, but it just got worse. I started vomiting and couldn’t stop. My father had taken the wagon to the bar and hadn’t come back since last night.

The nearest hospital was at least 10km away. My mother fainted and I couldn’t even get off my mat. I was wet with vomit and I a smelt of rotten fruit and sweat. I felt so weak and there was no water to make the solution because no one had gone to the well last night. My mother was still lying on the floor. She was so stressed I didn’t think she would wake up.

My father arrived drunk and was shouting at everyone. He tripped over my mother and she woke up alarmed, I told my dad after he had calmed down and he ran for help. A few minutes later he came back in a car with Mr Stevenson, the headmaster of Rock Bar High School. I was carried into the back of the truck and my mother came with me.

I closed my eyes and woke up in a hospital bed. A nurse with kind eyes was next to me checking my temperature. My mother came in and hugged me so tight I couldn’t breathe. I was a cholera survivor and was proud of it.

Many people like me have cholera and not many like me are able to survive. Water is scarce in rural areas and most of the time if it doesn’t rain you don’t get water. People are not always victims as it is sometimes their fault that they contract the disease.

l Laura Changamami is a 11-year-old student at Bryden Country School. Students can contribute to Our Future Scribes via email:

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