It’s TIME to end TB

24 of March – World Tuberculosis (TB) Day. The theme of World TB Day 2020 – ‘It’s TIME’. TIME to put the accent on the urgency to act on the commitments made by global leaders; TIME to scale up access to prevention & treatment; TIME to promote equitable, rights-based & people-centered TB response; TIME to ensure sufficient & sustainable financing including for research; TIME to promote an end to stigma & discrimination.

In support of the global #ItsTimetoEndTB campaign, AFEW International talked to people who faced TB and asked them to reflect on TIME in the context of their life stories.

Saule, volunteer of Sanat Alemi

When I found out about my diagnosis, it was like TIME had stopped for me. During the treatment, I was scared, I thought I was going to die. Fortunately, my roommates were very supportive, they kept saying that TB is curable and that life goes on.

I can not forget the moment when I moved to another department of the hospital for chronic patients. I stayed there for 2 years. It was very scary. It seemed to me that it’s impossible to cure TB since my tests were always positive. Nevertheless, after a hard struggle, I defeated the disease.

They say TIME heals. But it doesn’t. TIME is not able to cure, we cure ourselves by thinking about good things, doing daily routine, trying to distract yourself from bad thoughts, agreeing with what happened, giving ourselves the attitude – to stop suffering, accepting the fact that our life goes on.

I really want to forget those moments, memories that I experienced during my illness. And I am happy that I defeated TB, with the help and support of my parents and my daughter.

 Igor, volunteer of Sanat Alemi

Disease always changes a person. Many things you start to look at in a new way, rethink TIME, your life. When I got sick, I didn’t have any strength or desire to get out of my hospital bed. But I was lucky to have people around who supported me and made me to believe in myself, helped me to cope with the disease.

TIME of TB treatment became special for me. It changed me from the inside. I became stronger, learned to deal with difficulties. When you are ill, you realize that TIME has to be appreciated and spent as effectively as possible. You try not to waste it on trifles. “Yesterday” cannot be returned, so you analyze every moment you have lived and try to use TIME rationally and purposefully in the fight against the disease.

Tuberculosis is my life experience that has taught me to cope with difficulties and achieve my goal. Tuberculosis is curable, the main thing is not to lose heart and to set up yourself to get positive results!

Danat, volunteer of Sanat Alemi

When I found out about my diagnosis, I didn’t believe in that, because I had never complained about my health before. It was like TIME had stopped for me, bad thoughts kept me going. I was thinking I will never survive, and in general, I felt like my life was over. Thank God, there were people around who supported me morally and kept me alive.

The disease changed me a lot. I became stronger, more demanding to myself, I became more religious. Because of the prescribed therapy, I was able to get better. During the treatment TIME, my life values changed: I began to appreciate every moment of my life.

The fears related to the disease are behind me because I now know that TB is curable. People should be more informed about TB. This will help to detect the disease at an early stage and solve the problem of discrimination against people with TB!

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