UWIDUHAYE Antoinette, 8 years old
Antoinette is the second born child to her parents Clementine and Jean Marie Vianney. Antoinette was a very large baby but looked apparently normal until one year old, when her mother noticed she could not sit or stand like other babies her age. The doctors accounted Antoinette’s large size for the reason she was not standing. A few more months passed until Clementine discovered that those doctors were wrong, and her daughter’s condition was not due to her larger than normal size. Antoinette was indeed disabled. In attempts to seek treatment as soon as possible, Clementine rushed to several hospitals. After failed treatment attempts to seek proper treatment, Antoinette was referred to Neurologist Hospital. At the age of three Antoinette began her first rounds of physiotherapy sessions twice a week, for one year. While the results were positive, her mother reports that overall nothing was cured or significantly better. Antoinette continued to be unable to walk or complete other basic function without assistance. She can, however, pick up small things, has a healthy appetite, and enjoys being around other neighbor children as they run and play.
Clementine reports that she accepted the disability immediately and learned to cope well with her daughter’s disease. Her husband however, became angry, blamed Clementine for the disability, told her that he hated her, and left. A few months later she learned that her husband married a new woman and started a new family. After some time, he reportedlybegan to fight with the new wife and came back to Clementine but still failed to contribute any support or care to take care of their two children. He currently lives at Clementine’s home, contributing nothing, coming home drunk, and verbally attacking his wife.Clementine began to believe the hateful words from her husband. As if this wasn’t bad enough, extended relatives disowned her and her children, blaming her for bringing the disability upon Antoinette. Before meeting the community at Love With Actions, Clementine felt lonely. She believed she was the only one in the community with the problem. After meeting the group at LWA, she felt comforted knowing she had friends who understood her situation. Antoinette recently began treatment at Rilima Orthopedic Hospital in May 2018. Her family and LWA are looking forward to seeing how her condition will improve in the coming months.