On countless times, her baby has been discriminated for having been born with a deformed face but Gideon Tresia (17) has isn’t allowing her spirits to be dampened by all that.
Tresia, a Grade 9 dropout at Ondobe Senior School in the North, was dumped by her boyfriend when she fell pregnant at 16.
“I got struck twice; my break up with my baby-daddy at such a needy time of my life, which left me heart-broken and giving birth to a healthy baby only to realise later that there was something wrong with her face. Luckily, I have always had my mother’s support,” she says.
Tresia explains that when her daughter was born, she looked like any other normal healthy baby with no visible growths on her until she spotted a pimple on Ndilokwela’s (1) face one day. This was after she was discharged from the hospital after delivery. She ignored the pimple on her daughter’s face thinking it would disappear after a couple of days but as days turned into weeks, it grew bigger. She decided to visit one doctor after another in Ohangwena, all of whom couldn’t diagnose the cause of her daughter’s illness.
When Ndilokwela was three months old, Tresia decided to take her to the Katutura State Hospital because the lump just above her nose was starting to affect her sight and breathing. She was given some ointment to apply on the baby’s eyes.
However, the real heartache started when friends and relatives would visit and after having a look at Ndilokwela’s face, would ask her for explanations, then accuse her of neglecting her child without hearing her side of the story.
“To date, whenever I walk on the streets, people give me weird glances. I used to cry a lot, wondering how I had gotten myself into such a situation but I decided to ignore and give people the silent treatment like nothing was wrong. Other children the same age as my child sometimes make an effort to approach and play with her because she is very active, friendly and I am happy about that,” she says.
“This is actually my fourth time in Katutura Hospital I am always hoping for good news whenever I bring her for the checkups but nothing has been said about an operation yet,” she explains adding that, “Anyhow, I won’t give up on my daughter. With God by my side, I know my daughter will get help in due time and will manage to live a normal life, grow up like every other kid and maybe even become a lawyer when she grows up... who knows? ” Ndilokwela says, being optimistic about the future.
Tresia also states that she intends on continuing with her studies and hopes to become a paediatrician.
“Currently, I am financially unstable and my mother has been doing her best to support us and it isn’t easy. I messed up my life but I am going to make sure my child will have a better life than myself,” she concludes.
Although the baby-daddy ran away, his father has been supporting his grandchild financially even paying for Tresia’s maternity expenses, but V-Metro has committed itself to finding the real identity of this terrible hit-and run baby-daddy and expose him.