Saturday, October 17, 2009

South African Tragedy: Part 3

Sorry guys. You've asked a few times for an update on Lily and I haven't gotten to it. (For those of you with no idea what I'm on about, check here and here)

The news isn't great. It all went down in June and her condition hasn't changed. About a month ago she was transferred back to Stellenbosch Hospital from Tygerberg Hospital - I guess it's a capacity thing - which isn't great as Stellenbosch is where the bugger up happened in the first place. Mavis, our maid (Lily's aunt) says that the other day her sister noticed that two of Lily's bottom teeth were missing. She asked the nurse and the nurse said perhaps they had been knocked out when they suctioned excess saliva from her mouth. Perhaps I am being paranoid but to me that sounds like they are not exactly being gentle with her... A 2.5 year old's teeth should not be knocked out very easily. It is concerning to me and to Lily's mom of course.

Ah man, the whole thing makes me despair. I can't believe how powerless we really are. The social workers are apparently trying to find some kind of home for Lily to be moved to but apparently they all say that her condition is too bad. I spoke to the Band about Lily coming here to our house (If she ever does have to leave the hospital I can't think that she should go lie in a shack - the risk of infection and other unsafeties is high and scary) but the reality is that she needs to be in a place where there are people all the time. So I guess the waiting continues.

In terms of the lawyers... well they take forever. I think that's just normal with the law process.

Mavis says her sister (Kuselwa - Lily's mom) is really battling. She works 6 days a week and earns a horrific salary. Her work have never once asked about Lily and in the times she has had to rush to the hospital they have shouted at her telling her business is business. No compassion. This poor woman is so alone. My heart breaks for her. What's more is that even Mavis and the rest of the family battle with visiting Lily. It is really hard for them. Mavis says that she feels so bad - she is hardly even asking about Lily and acting like she doesn't care, but it is because she cares too much and it hurts too much. She said that when I went to hospital she was finished and realised she (mavis) wants to go for counselling to deal with what has happened to Lily and to me.

This is such a special family. I wish there was more that I could do. Providing employment for Kuselwa would be a start, but I wish that Lily could at least be given some dignity instead of remaining in the care of the same staff who allowed this nightmare to happen in the first place.

When I compare situations - Lily in that cold hospital and me in the Plett Mediclinic - the only patient - I realise how terribly unfair life in SA still is.


Kristen said...

wow what a horrible thing to happen! And absolutely something you wouldn't expect from a tooth ache. I pity that family and wish them justice. Sadly even with justice it sounds like they will never get the Lily that they know back.

Joanne said...

Oh I was hoping for a much better picture. The whole thing is unacceptable, and I feel your frustration with the situation. How about starting a fund on your blog for her? It seems to have worked on other blogs.

Tracey B said...

Hey Caz. Will be thinking of you going back to WWF tomorrow. Will send out a special prayer in the am. Love Tracey B (BB)

Tamara said...

Hectic. This just breaks my heart, Caz. You don't think it would be worth talking to Carte Blanche about the whole situation to try to raise awareness and funds?

Caz said...

hey guys..
re the fund idea I think that at this stage money won't really help. It would be one thing to fund a full time nurse or something, but even then you can't have the child living in a shack. So awful :(
T - I have spoken to the lawyers on the case as I'm itching to take this to the media but they've asked me not to for now :(

Gill said...

Thanks for the update. Wish there was some light at the end of the tunnel for them....