Tuesday, July 26, 2016

Love Story with a difference

A positive love story

By Darshana Shukul

As a journalist, we are always in search for unique stories. And it is sheer luck when we come across people and stories that create the ripple effect. Covering NGO beat I met this affectionate, smiling and spirited lady Mansi Shah (name changed) who was a founding member of  AP+ society, an association of people living with AIDS and HIV. I thought she must be one of those patients battling with HIV with a smile and purpose. What surprised me was that I was going to witness a rare love story where she was a heroine and her hero sure deserves a standing ovation.

Masi was happily married. But her marriage changed her life for the worse. Within a year she contracted the HIV virus from her husband. What she did not know was her husband was already HIV positive and was in the last stage. Her husband eventually succumbed to the virus and left Masi to handle the deadly virus and uncooperative in-laws.

She was forced to move back to her mother’s place where she began to rebuild her life and spirit. Mansi took up a job and in the process came in ‘contact with volunteers of voluntary counseling and training at SSG Hospital. Mansi came in contact with other HIV-infected persons and they formed the AP+ society, an association of people living with AIDS and HIV.

Life, will they say there is the sunshine,after a dark night, Mans’s life too was going to change for better. She ended up meeting a long lost friend whom she met for matrimony nine years ago. Raju (name changed) was happy to reconnect with Mansi and both of them ended up reviving their friendship. Soon Raju started falling for Mansi and ended up enrolling in an English speaking class near her house. And eventually, he proposed her for marriage.

Masi refused his proposal and explained that she was HIV positive and there is no point in thinking on those lines. Raju did not give up and succeeded in convincing Mansi to marry him. Even her in-laws were happy to welcome her with open arms and mind. When Mansi had asked Raju why is he taking the such a big risk, to which he replied, “ If we met after so many years, then there is a purpose. We could not marry each other then. But now that I am getting a second chance to be with you, I just cannot let you walk away.”

In today’s time, when love has become so commercial, superficial and hallow, such love stories reaffirm your trust in love and companionship. Mansi was all set to end her life, but it was Raju, who came as a ray of hope and magically transformed  her life. Her life, not only inspires, but also makes love divine and beautiful. It would be apt to say that when love blesses, life shines brighter than the sunshine.
 This post was written for the 'The first real love story I watched unfold' blogging contest by http://www.bonobology.com/ and http://writersmelon.com/a