Oh little girl. I know your statistics.

Now that your mother and your father have both died, you are more likely to live in a household that scrapes by on $18 a month. Or maybe less. You are living with your grandmother. You are not the only grandchild she tries to raise.

You are shorter than you should be for your age, and that tells me that you have not had enough to eat for a long time. You weigh much less than you should, and I know for sure that you have not had enough to eat during the last few months.

I know what your test results say and whether this virus is in your blood.

I know your statistics. You are 1 of 1,000,000 HIV orphans in this country.

But I didn't know you, Annabelle. How your face lights up with a slow, broad smile that almost erases the sadness in your eyes. How your cheeks dimple. How you already know how to count to ten. How you admire your big brother and gain new confidence when you're holding his hand.

Too many statistics. Let's keep the mamas alive. Let's save the babies. Let's know you.


Posted at 15:30


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