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Author Topic: Introduce yourself  (Read 120395 times)

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Offline FunkyMonkey

  • Member
  • Posts: 10
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #50 on: May 02, 2007, 09:10:09 AM »
Howdy everyone!!!

I'm Mark or Marco as my family likes to call me.  I tested positive July 13th 1991 at my discharge physical in the Navy.  I NEVER thought about HIV.  To me well forgive me, it was something that happened to Gay men and injection drug users--I'm neither.  But ahhhh...all it takes is falling head over twigs and berries for a georgeous model sex-pot (and you find out later she shot heroin with her manager/boyfriend) who was HIV positive and didn't know it--add to that a case of the clap and badda-bing...

After taking the first three years (my original prognosis from the Navy doc's) to find new and interesting ways to try to end my life, I was guilted into going to a support group.  The Gay men there simply saved my life.  They put humpty-Humpty back together again.

In 1992 I married my high school sweetheart and we're still together.  She's still HIV negative!  Yes we're kind of poster-kids for eroticized safer sex.

In 94 I decided to stop trying to die and figured I should find a way to live at peace and make a difference.  I've worked in HIV since.

I've had terrible times and amazingly beautiful times.  Times when the grotesque overwhelmed me and times when a single moment of live is so beautiful I'm struck dumb and can only cry at receiving such a gift as the space in between my breaths.

Sometimes I think confronting HIV has allowed me to become the man I always wanted to be--no excuses and no longer living for anyone else's expectations.  I opened myself to my potential and have become an artist, writer, musician, flyfisherman, activist and hopefully a friend.

All in all, I'd say I'm fucked up, fucked over, fucking enthusiastic, fucking romantic, fucking nuts fucking sad and fucking grateful.

Peace.   

Offline plmgood

  • Member
  • Posts: 5
  • Resistant AIDS, 17 yrs plus! There is a God!
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #51 on: May 02, 2007, 07:19:00 PM »
Hello from Coachella, 26 miles East of Palm Springs!
I tested Poz in July '94. Traced my infection back to a coworker in a committed relationship. I accept 50% responsibility for my infection.  Alex penetrated me without a rubber during a 3 way with his partner.  We all had been drinking and when he pulled out, I felt it but not before as I was busy elsewhere ;).

I converted to AIDS on Oct 27, '95 with PCP Pneumonia.  At that time, the docs gave a life expectancy of 18 months.  My illness had me one step from an oxygen tent, the final path to death.  Fortunately, I made it back from death's doorstep.

The worst moment in my life was when my best friend/sister Gail had to call my parents and sister to tell them I lay in a hospital bed dying!  That's when I finally came out of the closet with my family.  But, ironically, I pulled through.  I decided right then and there that I would overcome my demons of life and fast track myself to become the man I was meant to be.

I gave myself 2 yrs as I thought my time was limited and now I am whole.  I always say HIV "saved" my life! Gawd, it is 2007 and I just turned the big 5-0!!  I have been a treatment failure since 1996.  Maraviroc was my hope but failed. Now getting into another trial.  But I'm not disappointed.  I have been lucky to have my seriously weakend immune system keep me healthy over the years.  My numbers may be bad but not my spirit.

I met my partner Allan online and have moved out to the Palm Springs Valley to be with him.  He's HIV poz and is divorced and has 2 grown children.  We celebrate 4 years Jan 9, 2008.  I finally made my peace and by the grace of God, I'm still kicking and screaming.  Quick question?  Anybody experience male "hot flashes" and sweats?   Seriously guys,  I've become moody at times and also perspire frequently.  I need it cold at all times, and occasionally I jump into the pool to cool my body down.  I get a testos. shot every 2 wks.  Is it something that goes away as I age?  I do dislike any type of humidity, except Hawaii, of course. 8)

My daily motto is LIVE, LOVE, LAUGH!  Along with a positive attitude does wonders for the immune system. ::)   Now, I am entering the second half of my life and can't wait for the paths to be revealed!!

Live long and prosper, y'all.  Hailing frequencies close,

Starship Cmdr Billy P ::)

Offline wishihadacat

  • Member
  • Posts: 220
    • Therainstorm.com
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #52 on: May 02, 2007, 07:55:21 PM »
Welcome aboard the wonder of it all, Billy and everyone else. It sounds like your head is in a great place, and that's half the battle. This thread is attracting a lot of views; let's hear from all of you out there...
« Last Edit: May 02, 2007, 08:02:13 PM by wishihadacat »
Your name here  X_______________

Offline OzPaul

  • Member
  • Posts: 410
  • a very blessed 29 year ltnp
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #53 on: May 02, 2007, 09:12:59 PM »
A big, hearty welcome to everybody  ;D

Our numbers here keep growing. I'm heartened to know that there are many LTS's here at the Forums and out in the world. I hope and pray that with continued medical and scientific advances, that better less toxic medications will come to those of us affected by HIV/AIDS.

I would also hope to see that day that everyone who needs medication can afford it or that governments will find and /or allocate the resources for universal coverage.

in Peace and Love
Paul

Offline asaint

  • Member
  • Posts: 95
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #54 on: May 08, 2007, 09:55:44 PM »
Hi all, I’m 48 yrs old, Originally from New Jersey now taking up space in Florida.. I was married in January ‘84 three weeks later my sister Elise died of cancer, then two weeks later my Mom died. The night my son Robert was born in July my best friend was stabbed to death while we were out partying. June another good friend died of a over dose of heroin. Then in October I received registered mail from North Jersey Blood Bank that I donated blood to. You guess it  I tested POZ. 1984 was a F’up year for me.. Following months/years all of my drug buddies were either POZ or died
Fast forward to 1996 I ended up in the hospital with PCP and a bunch of other thing I can’t pronounce. I think my t-cells were like, < then 4/ V-load off the charts so I started meds which only lasted a year before I succumbed to drug addiction again. Sense then I been on again off again with my meds and drug addiction. My wife finely left me after 20 years cause of my drug abuse and depression. Today my liver is messed up, my cd4's are around 60 V-load <50 but life goes on all I need now is a girlfriend and I’ll be set for life Oh did I say that I’m single ladies ;-)
Bob
« Last Edit: May 08, 2007, 09:58:40 PM by asaint »
6/11 VL <50   CD4 (9%)   CD8 (54%}

Offline jordan12

  • Member
  • Posts: 10
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #55 on: May 09, 2007, 01:39:43 PM »
I am thankful, I that i found this forum.  I had been struggling with feeling cut off, left out and looking for support.   I started reading the posts as a guest and found that Ineeded to register and get on with it. 

I live in so Cal, have for the majority of my life.  I was diagnosised at the time of my seroconversion in 1985 and was a symptomatic until 1996, and then only had chronic sinusitis which was controlled by antibiotics,   was hospitalized in 2004 with PCP, began meds immediately and have been compulsive about  taking them since then.    I am healthy, working fulltime and trying to not get overwhelmed by worry and lonliness.   

I find the forum to be helpful, just in knowing that there are others out there.
Life is too short for dram and petty things, so kiss slowly, laugh insanely, love truly and forgive quickly

Offline kellyspoppi

  • Member
  • Posts: 153
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #56 on: May 10, 2007, 12:14:59 AM »
 ;D hi all and thankful to meet all you fellow LTS"s. since i began posting over the past year, i have been amazed at the openess of the many of you that are contributing on all these forums and the tremendous amount of support you show to those who enter. keep up the great work.

i'm a 56 yr old hetero male married to a hiv+ woman now for 13 years. we live in upstate ny and have our own business. i have been an insurance agent for 32 years and my wife has been my office manager since we married. we currently own my parents old house in the town we both grew up in.

i have 1 son, 28, who is currently serving in the navy on his second tour of duty in the navy in san diego, from a previous marriage. he has blessed us with 4 grandchildren.

after my first wife and i separated in 1985 i met joanne. like leatherman, i would like to dedicate this post to her, for if it wasn't for her courage and will to live, i may not have had the purpose driven life to accomplish all that i have since becoming positive.

joanne had dealt with lupus in 1984, and after 250 blood transfusions, and being pronounced dead twice, she somehow survived that ordeal. soon after leaving the hospital, she left her abusive husband and somehow crossed my path in a club soon thereafter.

for me it was like love at first sight, but because we had both just gotten out of horrendous marriages, we spent the first 2 months of our relationship really getting to know one another over marathon phone conversations. in august of 1985 i took her to tina turners' private dancer concert in saratoga springs, and later that night we made love for the first time.

unbeknown to the both of us at the time, this long anticipated romantic exchange would also become the moment i was infected with hiv. a year later joanne was notified that the blood she was given to keep her from dieing of lupus would also become the blood that took her life with AIDS.

joanne's initial diagnosis was ARC, back then a diagnosis just short of aids. she was one of the first folks in our town to take azt,  24 pills each day. as time went on, joanne had to be transfused with red blood cells as the azt was reducing the oxygen in her blood. as exhausted as she would appear the day before the transfusion, the morning after she would be up at 6am, beach boys blasting, dancing with her vaccum cleaner while i was sound asleep in bed.

in 1988, joanne was diagnosed with a tumor on her lung, went through 8 weeks of radiation followed by fusion injections which would totally knock her out.  the fact was she was never to rebound from that tumor, and one night, totally out of the blue, joanne sat up, began convulsing, and shortly thereafter she died in my arms.

through it all she never gave up hope, never complained, lived life to the fullest, and loved me the way i dreamed it would always be with my life partner. she has been memorialized, like so many others, on a panel of the names project aids memorial quilt.

as long term survivors we have all suffered through our losses. for some, like killfoile mentions, those losses became a driving force behind something neither he nor i knew we had deep inside us. i would like to think my passion for activism is based on an uncontrolable need to make sure joannes death wasn't in vain, just as killfoile mentions his passion is derived from the many he has lossed, and continues to lose over the years.

whatever the reason, as you continue to view these posts of mine over several of the forums, please know that through my experiences advocating for those of us trying to gain access to care, adequate funding for new and improved life saving meds & services, fighting with ASO's to make sure that they continue to provide for the changing needs of their clients, and putting an END TO STIGMA, i do so to honor joanne and the many others who paved the way to make all these benefits we share in possible.

kellyspoppi     

Offline GoodMatchHawaiiRetreat

  • Member
  • Posts: 51
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #57 on: May 15, 2007, 12:29:23 AM »

 Quick question?  Anybody experience male "hot flashes" and sweats?   Seriously guys,  I've become moody at times and also perspire frequently.  I need it cold at all times, and occasionally I jump into the pool to cool my body down.  I get a testos. shot every 2 wks.  Is it something that goes away as I age?  I do dislike any type of humidity, except Hawaii, of course.
Starship Cmdr Billy P ::)

Aloha Billy,  regarding the hot flashes... I began experiencing them after starting testosterone shots.  I've adjusted my shots to every 10 days and teh cycle seems to work much better with less hot flashes and emotional flares.  (I was experiencing fits of anger and depression - felt menopausal!!!)  now that I'm on the 10 day cycle and very consistent i haven't experienced the hot flashes nor fits of extreme emotion.
Be sure to have your dr monitor your testosterone levels as well.  If they get high it can also cause those side effects.
Congratulations on your awesome relationship!  Live well, live happy!!!

Offline furbear

  • Member
  • Posts: 4
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #58 on: May 15, 2007, 08:41:33 PM »
Howdy everyone...guess I'll chime in here.  My name is Mark and I found out I was HIV+ on the Ides of March 1990.  Somehow I woke up that day and just knew.  I believe I've been HIV+ since an unexplained flu-like illness in 1986.  My t-cells have been up and down and are now at 92 with a undetectable viral load.  I've been on most meds and don't have many options left.  I'm part of a small (approx. 17%) group of people termed discordant responders (VL+/CD-).  My t-cells are down and my viral load is down.  My t-cells have never really gone up as a result of being on meds.  So. in a sense the antivirals don't work for me.  My problem is immunological, not virological.  There's nothing out there approved for treating t-cell depletion.  My doctor and I are at a loss for what to do now.  I live in San Francisco and my doctor  is considered an expert at treating HIV.  I'm sensing a loss of control here.  I've been on HIV disabillity for ten years.  I don't have a lot of energy these days but then again I'm 51 (it's a good thing...).

I have great support.  Two very loving relationships, my ex-partner and my boyfriend, both HIV-.  Thank God for people willing to love us when we feel unlovable, huh?  I'm attending school part-time studying, of all things, molecular biology.  I'll probably be 70 by the time I finish but I'm determined to finish.

Hope to connect with other people dealing with the same issues.  Peace, Mark 

Offline rog_london

  • Member
  • Posts: 4
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #59 on: May 16, 2007, 03:57:30 AM »
Well, I'm new here, and having been positive since 1996 I feel like a newbie in another sense - especially when compared to you guys who have lived with this for a good many more years. I think this forum should be compulsory reading for all (usually younger) who think that HIV is a minor inconvenience, nobody dies from it any more, and modern treatments are easy and safe....

Nevertheless I recognize I'm lucky - so far.

I got hit as a result of a condom split. It wasn't even a pleasant fuck, because the guy was clumsy and I knew when the condom went I'd almost certainly got a problem. The good thing was knowing just WHEN it happened and getting tested ASAP - in my case two months later. This revealed an interesting thing in my case apart from testing positive - despite the fact that I'd only just 'got it' and my viral load was undetectable, my CD4 count was only 360. If I'd been tested some time after infection and got a reading like that I'd have thought I was in for treatment very soon, but knowing that 360 was normal for me (because the virus would have been unlikely have had an influence so quickly) saved a lot of unnecessary worry.

The rest of this is boring really, and obviously that's good. In the 11 years since, my CD4 count has ranged from 320 (about two years in) to 560 (once) but usually floats around the mid 300s to the mid 400s. My VL once hit 115,000, was around 55,000 for a couple of years, and is now at 12,000. I haven't done anything different in that time to influence things, and I haven't had any symptoms or treatment. In other words life goes on as normal.

Just before Christmas 2004 I got the flu, and badly. However, I bounced back from that with no problem other than a course of antibiotics from the doctor because the flu left bronchitis (which is common enough and not related to HIV) and I returned to work after three weeks. I had shingles in 2005. This could be HIV related but people my age (62 yesterday) get it anyway. No recurrence of that so far. And that's about it. I'm working full time, and I treat this on a 'need to know' basis - i.e. most people don't need to know.

When I tested positive the doctor told me that after ten years of reasonable stability you can call yourself a 'long term non-progressor'. They've moved the goal posts a bit since then - currently you need to get to 15 years before you get your long service medal - but I'm hopeful. As with most of us it's a day-by-day thing and you just never know what may happen or when, or even if. I'm an engineer, and I think it's what you might call a parallel to the medical profession in that many of the same thought processes are involved - and it looks in my case as though my immune system is coexisting nicely with the virus. Long may that continue. When I got diagnosed I had thought that maybe I'd be lucky to get to 60, but it now looks as though I may see the doctor at the clinic retire - and that definitely was not 'on the cards' in 1996.

Finally, I have to say that here in the UK we are very lucky, or maybe I just happen to have landed in the right GUI clinic. For the benefit of this largely US audience, here we have medical care automatically available to all in the form of the 'National Health Service', and while it may have its shortcomings, these are definitely NOT in the area of STD treatment and care. The clinic where I was diagnosed and which I visit every six months for blood tests and a chat is attached to a large hospital. The doctor who deals with me runs the clinic with a small staff of doctors and ancillary staff, all of whom are very welcoming, friendly and helpful. The doctor is a motorbike rider (like me) so when I'm there we talk more about bikes than HIV. It's very sociable, and I always enjoy the visit. I feel I get good advice and proper information and lots of encouragement.

These clinics are completely confidential. Patient records are kept locally and you can decide not to inform your own doctor or anyone else. In fact, they'll treat you with no information at all - if you're so paranoid you don't want to give your name and address, that's OK with them. You have a patient reference number, and other than that it's all on first-name terms, and that includes the staff if you're a regular like I am. It's all an impressive combination of efficiency and a pleasant ambiance - and remember no money changes hands - that's all paid for by our taxes, no matter how expensive the treatment.

I think that's about it. Sorry I can't tell you how I have 'coped' with the difficulty of life 'living with HIV'. Maybe that's in the future - maybe not. I feel like I'm cheating the system after reading some of the other stories on here, but I'd be the first to admit that so far I've been very lucky. Somebody up there seems to like me - a bit.

Rog.

Offline DanielMark

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,475
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #60 on: May 16, 2007, 02:47:06 PM »
Finally, I have to say that here in the UK we are very lucky, or maybe I just happen to have landed in the right GUI clinic.

Welcome Rog,

We in Canada are equally fortunate to have health care for all, which provides access to "universal, comprehensive coverage for medically necessary hospital and physician services.” Without it, I would no doubt be dead by now.

Daniel
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

MAY 2000 LAB RESULTS: CD4 678
VL STILL UNDETECTABLE

DIAGNOSED IN 1988

Offline rog_london

  • Member
  • Posts: 4
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #61 on: May 18, 2007, 12:55:49 PM »
Thank you for your kind wishes, Daniel. I only recently started to look through these forums, and the more I read the more I realize that so many people have really had a rough ride. Also, this is one of the few occasions when I can see that living in the 'land of the free' ain't necessarily a good thing.

Even in Europe they haven't really got things as well sorted as they have here. I have a young Romanian pal who has just qualified as a doctor in Germany (Not HIV+, of course) and he tells me that it's by no means as easy to get tested and treated as it is here. In Germany they want to know who your partner(s) were so they can call them in for treatment, which I think is a VERY BAD IDEA. Official policy in the STD clinics in the UK is that all are welcome with or without an appointment and there's no pressure to tell anyone who you slept with or anything else. They have realized that it's much more important to get people through the door so they can be treated and advised, and not sensible to frighten them off with the threat of making them reveal things they don't want to reveal.

We don't always get things right - who does? - but I think whoever worked out the system for the GUI clinics here knew exactly what he or she was doing, and I'd be first in the queue to shake them warmly by the hand. It even extends to disguising the purpose of the clinic - mine is called simply the Patrick Clements Clinic, and there is no mention anywhere in the hospital of its function.

I do notice, though, that in the years I've been attending there the numbers they're dealing with have risen dramatically. The operation has expanded quite a bit since 1996. This is rather depressing. Of course, it's not all HIV, but no doubt HIV goes hand in hand with the sort of activity which leads to other STDs.

My keyboard runneth over - and I'm in danger of entering Grumpy Old Man mode. In that vein someone in here who shall be nameless and is a few years younger than I am was bemoaning 'being elderly'. I'd just like to kick his ass (good naturedly of course) and say 'speak for yourself'!

Rog.

Offline CaptCarl

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,114
  • Located in the Palinsville subdivision, JesusLand
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #62 on: May 19, 2007, 12:02:30 AM »
   Hi everyone, my name is Carl. Sometimes known as Captain Carl, sometimes known as "that asshole with the long hair" I have been poz for 19 years this summer, I am 42. When I turn 44, I l plan on having a "Half-Life Party" as will have been poz for half of my life at that point. When I was diagnosed, the doc told me that I had 18 to 24 months to live. I was living in a small town in Connecticut at the time, and small towns don't have many secrets. Some of the local wildlife made things pretty unpleasant for awhile there. I live in New Mexico, and have for the last fifteen years. I am doing very well healthwise, and only started taking meds about a year and a half ago. I don't know what my numbers are, nor do I particularly care. What matters to me is how I actually feel, which is pretty good most of the time.
   I work full time as a landscaper, have a partner who is negative, he is very supportive and kind. We have three dogs (the "kids") Waldo, Baby Elmo who are Appenzellers, and little Rindy,a Boston Terrier (Terror?) crossbreed. I was diagnosed with Liver Cancer in November, and am receiving "treatment" for it. The treatment consists of injecting ethanol alcohol into the tumor every few weeks to keep it from growing too big, until such a time as I can have a Liver Transplant. You guys simply cannot imagine what big fun this is, I don't know how I ever got along without it!
But I refuse to be set back because of this, and in the best Damn The Torpedoes, Full Steam Ahead tradition, I began the process for getting a Mortgage to buy a house we found for sale in the mountains outside of Albuquerque, where we currently reside. I am also an artist of the painting persuasion, and a gearhead who loves working on old cars. Currently a '63 Caddy deVille, '86 AMC 4X4 wagon, and '57 DeSoto consume all my extra energy as well as extra money. I'm looking forward to participating in this forum. It's nice to be here.
   Capt.Carl....(who is enjoying the Hell out of a good thunderstorm as he writes this)
The only thing I can do straight is shoot..

Offline oaktree

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #63 on: May 23, 2007, 08:53:43 PM »
Hello from Jim in Sacramento.

I tested poz in 92. Think I got infected in 83. My Doc. never thought he should put me on any meds. My vl is <50, cd4 1087, cd8 573. Sometimes I wonder if the shoe is going to drop. Go to nih twice a year for the LTNP study. I try to live every day in the moment. Don't know what else to say. I am blessed.

Offline hudstar

  • Member
  • Posts: 130
  • 2010
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #64 on: May 24, 2007, 10:38:25 PM »
Hi - my name is Lincoln.I have been POZ since 1988.I was infected the first time I had penerative sex and in my first relationship. Recently I have come out as being POZ after a doctor convinced me things had changed. For me I ran around the world for many years trying to stay away from my country (Australia) because my memories of HIV was one of rejection and violence. Somehow things changed and I missed the boat. I also trialed many of the pills now on the market taken for granted. I remember bloating, vomiting, bleeding and fainting during some of these trials as they calculated dosages and researched side effects. For me, if it was not for travel and exposing myself to the adventures I had, I think I would have let HIV take me over. I also kept a journal during those early years to record my life to be given to my family when I died. Unknowingly I recorded an era in detail and have empoweried myself by rewriting this into what I hope is my first book. I went to my first National AIDS Day last December 2006 and mourned for the first time in 19 yrs in regards to HIV - I had not forgotten those early years where people just died around you - work mates, the guy you flirted with last month, it was relentless. I also realised during World Aids Day I had compassion rather than anger - that was a great realisation. l cannot make sense of why I am here while many are not, I do not feel guilty nor lucky.  I still carry the urgency and impotance to absorb as much of life, culture, travel and nature as I did 19 years ago. Maybe that is not such a bad thing, I seem more life loving than non HIV people sometimes :). I will say that HIV has marred my feelings of sensuality and I still approach intimacy with much caution...... I'm working on that one. I guess I have a lot of learning to do in this new HIV environment  ???
diagnosed 1988
POZ personals - hudster

Offline hudstar

  • Member
  • Posts: 130
  • 2010
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #65 on: May 24, 2007, 11:11:40 PM »
I forgot to write, Im 41, resistant to most HIV drugs, CMV clear (haven't kissed enough guys I guess ....LOL) and survived aggressive lymphoma in 1999 when they told me otherwise. While on an AIDS ward I was planning to continue my travels and gladly survived like I knew I would. I travelled Europe shortly after my radiation treatment was over then put myself through a 4.5 year University Post Graduate course.
diagnosed 1988
POZ personals - hudster

Offline breathe_sunshine

  • New Member
  • Posts: 2
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #66 on: May 25, 2007, 11:55:14 AM »
hiya , my name is Donn. Hiv+  since 1988.I'm single and looking  ;)
Been living in The Netherlands all my life, close to amsterdam.
Started with meds 6 years ago and since then my viralload went from a cuple of million to undetectable!!
and since about 2.5 years my T4count is over 700 everytime its checked!!
Was given up in 1988 (Was told i had 2 years to live at the most) but i'm still here YEY!!!!

Edit: forgot to say I'm 36 lol!!
« Last Edit: May 25, 2007, 01:54:25 PM by breathe_sunshine »

Offline tonyflorida

  • New Member
  • Posts: 1
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #67 on: May 28, 2007, 07:58:10 AM »
Hello from Baltimore, Maryland   :)
My name is Tony, age 44. I'm celebrating my 19th year this weekend, I was diagnosed this time in 1988.  I started Meds in 05 after being diagnosed with lymphoma. I went through the standard rounds of chemo where all went well.  My viral went undetectable and my T4 count hovered in the 800s.  As of recently my T4 levels have dropped to the mid 200s and my viral load is at 844 ???  I'm afraid that things are beginning to spiral down whereas I'm beginning to show signs of Lymphoma (everything except the enlarged nodes).
I'm still handling this with a smile I think attitude and good music, along with a little denial play a major role in all of this. I routinely put this issue in the back of my mind where it's it's forgotten about for the most part (until it's meds time) and even then, meds are viewed as vitamins. I find that that's the easiest way to get them down. 
So, I'll keep you all posted with the results of my labs.

I wish everyone good health,
Tony
 

Offline PeruvianStraigthGuy

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  • Posts: 2
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #68 on: May 29, 2007, 10:59:41 AM »
Nice to meet you all!!!
Before, let me show my apologies because my not-perfect English management...I'm jut writing from Lima, Peru. My Name is Walter, age 39, I was diagn. in 1996 and I was infected in 94, by my girfriend, she passed away in 2000, and she just realized have the HIV only three weeks before her dies.
I start my ARV treatment en 1999, My cd4 is in +/- 300 an my VL is <50 (Undetectable)... Let me tell you guys, Here in Peru is very hard be a person livin' with HIV/AIDS, believe me!, because the ignorance, the discriminnation an the prejudices, even I'm a straigth (Heterosexual) Guy, I show my respects to all kinds of sexuallity options, because I was living overseas for a few years, and so, I can learn looking another cultures....
Now, my great problem is the lonelyness... I broke my last relationship in 2005 (With a HIV infected girl too) and , later, I fall into a deep depression, maybe until today.
I hope I can recipe some cheers from this community!!!

God Bless You All,
Walter from Lima, Perú.

Offline CaptCarl

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,114
  • Located in the Palinsville subdivision, JesusLand
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #69 on: May 29, 2007, 09:17:18 PM »
Walter,
   Welcome to the forums! It is always nice to hear from other people in other countries. I like to get perspectives of this disease from people that live elsewhere in the world from myself. Thanks for bringing a fresh persective :)

Capt.Carl
The only thing I can do straight is shoot..

Offline DanielMark

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,475
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #70 on: May 30, 2007, 05:59:50 AM »
And hello from Canada, Walter.

Daniel
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

MAY 2000 LAB RESULTS: CD4 678
VL STILL UNDETECTABLE

DIAGNOSED IN 1988

Offline J.R.E.

  • Member
  • Posts: 7,280
  • Joined Dec-2003 Living positive, since 1985.
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #71 on: May 30, 2007, 08:10:41 AM »


Tony and Walter,.... Welcome to the site !!!


Ray
Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 25 mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
Metoprolol tartrate 25mg



http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=40802.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=45159.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=39722.msg495621;topicseen#msg495621

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=46806.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=39414.msg491701#msg491701


Diagnosed positive in 1985,.. In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started on  HAART on October 24th, 2003.

 As of 12/10/14,  t-cells are at 350,  Previous 8/25/14--- 402/ Viral load remains <40

 Current % is at 13% / Previous 8/25/14 11%

  
 63 years young.

Offline xyahka

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  • Dance together!! aha!! aha!! I like it!!
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #72 on: May 30, 2007, 08:44:21 AM »
hey hola, me llamo juan carlos y soy de Sur America.

solo queria saludarte ya que vi que eres de Peru, que bueno que hayan mas latinos en este site, por ahora habemos pocos, pero es chevere que te nos hayas unido.

Lei tu post y me alegro que estes aqui, yo tengo como un mes y un poco mas, y la gente aqui es muy buena onda, te van a caer bien.

te envio un gran saludo amigo.

Juan Carlos

/edited: I am sorry somehow i though i was writing a PM to Walter.... (i just woke up....) that's why i wrote to him in Spanish, sorry.....i think that i cant delete the post so i better explain my mistake... sorry/
« Last Edit: December 12, 2009, 05:52:10 PM by Andy Velez »
13/03/07 1er diagnóstico /Peso: 79kg
19/04/07 CD4: 494 /CViral: ?? /Peso: 80kg
19/07/07 CD4: 659 /CViral: ?? /Peso: 79.5kg
06/03/08 CD4: 573 (después de meses muy deprimido) /CViral: ?? /Peso: 79kg
17/09/08 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 84Kg
06/02/09 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 85Kg /HCV: Neg /HBV: Neg.
07/03/09 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 87Kg / Gym 3días/semana y Natación 2días/semana.
12/05/09 CD4: 470 /Cviral: ?? /Peso: 87Kg.
08/07/09 CD4: ? /CViral: ? /Peso: 77Kg.
09/12/09 CD4: 510 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg. No medicinas aún
10/01/10 CD4: ? /CViral: ? /Peso: 76Kg.
15/05/10 CD4: 320 /CViral: ? /Peso: 76Kg.
01/02/11 CD4: 291 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg.
05/05/11 CD4: 366 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg.
27/07/11 CD4: 255 /CViral: 138000 /Peso: 78kg.

Disfrutando y aceptando una nueva vida...

Offline PeruvianStraigthGuy

  • New Member
  • Posts: 2
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #73 on: May 30, 2007, 08:48:33 AM »
 :D
Thank you all, fellas!!!
I wish my permanence in this site will be grateful!!! Please ask me anything you want about Peru and people who lives with HIV/AIDS in here, We have not the development ( mean cultural and about the tratment ) than you have in your places, meanwhile, many people stills living with the virus without to know they have it!.

I will appreciate all tips about how to care myself too!
Best regards
Lo mismo para tí mi amigo Juan Carlos, Dios te bendiga y un gusto conocerte!!!

Walter

Offline Edmundas

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  • I love you all!
    • Pozityvus gyvenimas
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #74 on: May 31, 2007, 03:04:23 PM »
Hello, everybody!
My name is Edmundas (or Ed - whatever). I'm HIV+ gay guy from Lithuanian city Klaipeda. I was diagnosed at Summer '96. So - 11 years ago. Hope to have fun and loooooooooooong life together with all of you  ;)
Life is fantastic! Enjoy it!

Offline aztecan

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  • Posts: 5,429
  • 29 years positive, 57 years a pain in the butt
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #75 on: June 01, 2007, 09:48:17 AM »
Welcome Tony, Walter and Edmundas.

I am very glad you found us and look forward to getting to know each of you better.

Wow, we really have become an international community here.

HUGS,

Mark
"May your life preach more loudly than your lips."
~ William Ellery Channing (Unitarian Minister)

Offline Edmundas

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    • Pozityvus gyvenimas
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #76 on: June 01, 2007, 10:43:07 AM »
Dear Mark,
Thank you for your joy of us joining the forum.
Greetings from Lithuania!
Life is fantastic! Enjoy it!

Offline OzPaul

  • Member
  • Posts: 410
  • a very blessed 29 year ltnp
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #77 on: June 05, 2007, 04:54:07 PM »
A big welcome to Donn, Walter and Ed  ;D

As Mark said, we are indeed a global family !

I hope to hear more from you guys as you get to know us and the Forums.

BIG ((((HUGS))))

Paul

Offline geraldinapell

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  • the kitten looks just like my own cat "Zwiebertje"
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #78 on: June 15, 2007, 05:16:06 AM »
Hi,
I'm Geraldine and i live in Holland.
I got infected by my sons dad he never admitted it to his self that he had it let alone tell me ... I only found out coz his ex was playing around with his brother and he was acting strange about it and coz i was preggers at the time my hormones were raging and i was jealous so that's when he told me that she had aids!!!! so i asked him "what about you then?" he said he didn't have it, so i left it at that, I was after all 6 months pregnant and i didn't want to know i mean at that stage of pregnancy you can't have it aborted anyway!!
had the baby who by the way was a strapping lad so i thought no more about it we were still together anyway so no need.
2 years later we'd split up and he got really ill with diarrhea and so did I plus I was dating again so thought it may be a good idea to have the test and that was it I'd got it!!! :o
Anyway he died shortly after that a year later i think from pure shame coz he had known all along that he had it but wouldn't accept it stuck his head in the sand but his ex and me are still alive and kicking and our son was born HIV free, which was very lucky coz i breast fed him as well for 4 months on his fathers word that he'd not got it!!!
Anyway it's been 13 years now since i found out and I'm still going strong, started working full time beginning of this year coz i wasn't so tired all the  time anymore thanks to better meds.

Offline sharkdiver

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Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #79 on: June 15, 2007, 08:29:38 PM »
Howdy.  I really appreciate reading the topics and comments on the forum.  Thought I'd introduce myself.

I too have been a longtime survivor: tested positive in 1985 although I was probably infected around 82-83 (when I was about 15) Certainly not the best time in our country's history to not only come out, but to be poz as well.  I had a horrifying experience finding out my senior year in high school. I was called in, the nurse gave me a pamphlet about finding a doctor, a pamphlet about nutrition and what to avoid, and to top it all off she handed me a pamphlet from a funeral home with the reassuring advice that "you probably want to take care of this now."  Fortunately I listened to the voice in my head that said that this was bullshit. 22 years later, more than half of my life dealing with it, I'm still healthy and happy to be around. I guess its been an "unfortunate gift"  (although I'd like to return it) but its made me a stronger person.

take care,
diveswsharks

Offline appleboy

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  • Just me!
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #80 on: June 15, 2007, 09:02:55 PM »
I am only 2 years poz but I wanted to say thank you to each of you that have posted in this topic.  This topic has helped me gain more hope. So from the bottom of my heart thank you all!
Bill
If you are walking down the street and your pants drop to your ankles bend over pick them up and keep on walking!
My Blog

Offline TimmyT

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  • Posts: 12
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #81 on: June 25, 2007, 10:34:40 PM »
Hi Everyone, just checking in here at the LTS forum. It will be 18 years this September since seroconverting and I will be 41 in a couple of weeks.

It's been a strange trip, but definitely, it's been an interesting trip so far. Hopefully, this little journey of mine will continue for many many more years to come. Is it strange that I want to live to be 100? I don't know if I will ever get there, and odds may be against it. But it is one of those wild little goals that I keep in the recesses of my mind, and tucked away deep within my heart.

Anyway, I raise my glass to all of you who have come a long way with your virus, and I drink to your continued longevity and good health. Cheers!  ;D

Offline atxpozguy

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  • POZ+ 30 year milestone reached for Austin man
    • It's Your Vehicle & Money
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #82 on: June 26, 2007, 05:10:38 AM »
Hello everyone, my name is Pat, my best guess when I became poz was before we had testing or even knew about HIV/AIDS because I tested poz in '82 if I remember correctly with all most of my friends when I was 25 years old, come August 29th, I will be 51 years old. I have lived in Austin, Texas for the past 8 years, before that, 7 years in San Antonio. I grew up in Nederland, Texas which is 90 miles east of Houston, Texas.

I have younger partner that was our houseboy when my late partner of 15 years that died after a long fought battle with numerous infections and a 0 CD4 count for his last 6 months. I was with my loving partner the day he passed away peacefully, Now, that houseboy is no longer a boy but a educated young man of 26 years old who has been a tremendous help to me during several episodes of near death illnesses since 2001 when I was diagnosed with AIDS.

I am currently taking Lexiva and Truvada, the only meds up until recently, the 4 different virus mutations I have that are not resistant to. Of course, I have had some terrible experiences with the various other meds and horrible drug trials which they couldn't pay enough the participate in again.

Other than the nagging never know when it strikes neuropathy that creeps up my legs to my knees, I find myself doing much better these days. Of course when I become ill with anything, I make an appointment to see my doctor before it has a chance to get worse.

I have several hobbies, none my partner like to do, but the two young guys that I am mentoring love to go fishing, hiking, camping and just laying around the house watching movies while one of us is online.

I quit working fulltime back in 2002, mainly because my health at the time would not permit me driving a commercial truck, plus I just didn't have the energy I once had before being diagnosed with AIDS. Going from making $8000 a month to $1072 a month SSDI takes time to adjust, but I did and enjoy the quality of life I have today surrounded by very loving friends and partner.  8)

Here in Austin, I am involved in my community, do alot of speaking before our city council about issues that the low income and less fortunate get royally screwed because of special interest votes. I have a website that I founded, www.texastowingcompliance.com, to which I am known as the leading consumer advocate for consumers ripped off my towing companies. I speak at local high schools about HIV/AIDS and what they can expect if they become infected and the importance of safe sex.

I have dog, his name his Nicky....

I chose Austin,Texas to live my remaining years because of the excellent healthcare for persons with HIV/AIDS, the unrelenting community support, a very open gay community and the excellent year around weather.  ;D
30 years poz with no expiration date

atxlovingqueer@gay.com
atxniceguy@gmail.com

Diagnosed HIV 1983
Diagnosed AIDS 2001

As of Jan 17, 2012: VL <20k CD4 183  28.5%

Offline dbmathews

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
  • HIV/AIDS booth at a church summer blockparty.
    • welcome to my world
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #83 on: June 26, 2007, 11:15:41 PM »
Hi folks.  I tested poz February 1993.  Seroconverted around Christmas time 1992...  was sicker than a dog that Christmas with what my doctor called influenza.  The guy I had been dating had known he was poz but didn't tell me.  I heard later on from friends.  I find it curious that on his current personal ad at POZ.com he states he only plays bareback.  What a load of crap, and a lack of responsibility on his part.

Yes, it takes two to tango and I've have taken on the responsibility of being infected.  I already knew better, having lost too many friends in the 80s in Jacksonville, Florida.  I used to feel like I let my friends down, knowing what they went through.

Still a Red Cross certified HIV/AIDS instructor, although the Red Cross dropped the program 3 years ago.  Trying to make my corner of the world a safer, happier, and hopefully more educated place.  LOL  Wish me luck.

I work for state government and thankfully have decent health and disability insurance, plus a decent retirement plan.  I'm here for the duration, or until a cure is found.  When a cure is found, then all bets are off...  I may be looking for a warmer, drier place to call home.

Take care you all, and keep the faith!

Don
« Last Edit: June 26, 2007, 11:21:17 PM by dbmathews »
Tested Poz February 19, 1993.
Started Combo Meds March 1996.  CD4s @ 166.
First Combo of Ritonavir, AZT, & Epivir.  (remember the ritonavir runs?)
Current Combo of Reyataz, Epzicom, & Viread.
Undetectable and CD4s @ 980 January 2008.
Thankfully now saving for retirement!

Offline poobear

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  • Posts: 112
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #84 on: June 27, 2007, 01:46:42 AM »
Wanted to chirp in.  My name is Rachel.  I was diagnosed July 1994.  I was 18 yrs old.  Now I am 33.  Living with HIV for 15 years in July.  It has been a bumpy road.  I was put on meds about 1 year after diagnosis,  and have been on different cocktails ever since.  My numbers are great.  I have never had an OI.  I was infected while in drug rehab,  while I was there I couldn't have my drug of choice so I had sex, and of coarse no condom ,so unprotected sex,  I remember getting out of rehab and having the flu really bad,  I did not know at that time that this was the HIV in my system.  Anyway I am doing great and am going for disability for headaches not my HIV status.  I wish everyone the best of health and I am truly grateful that I am still here and able to say that I am doing well.   I have been with my partner for 12 years and she has been a great support.  Much Love to all Rachel
« Last Edit: June 27, 2007, 01:49:42 AM by poobear »

Offline newone

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  • Posts: 57
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #85 on: June 27, 2007, 09:22:15 PM »
I have no idea when I was infected but as I lost so many ex partners and friends to Aids in the late 80s I can only assume that I was infected at that time (who knows??).
After a routine eye test check up (two years ago) I was diagnosed with a mild eye infection and at the same time I was persuaded to have an HIV test (never been tested before) ...the test come back positive with a cd count of 202 and subsequently I have been on sustiva/truvada since.
The new millennium has not been kind to me after a wild, happy (in moderation) and heath-problem free existence I split up from a 12 years relationship to find myself older, alone and hiv. (still gorgeous!!)
I am still alone, hiv and getting older but in general I keep busy with my work and "not" much has changed to my attitude to life.
I experienced a very happy chapter of my life and nowI am left with fantastic memories and I am trying to cope as well as I can with this new and different chapter of my life.
I am not sure why I find myself completely isolated and without real friends, sometimes I blame HIV (and sustiva) and often  temporarely realise that perhaps I was destined to live my life as I am living it and the combination of being gay, my job, being older and all the circumstances that surround my present existence have resulted in my present status quo.
Sustiva, Truvada
cd 212 Mar 04
cd 265 May 04 (started meds)
cd 389 Jun  04
cd 504 Oct  04
cd 449 Dec 04
cd 518 Apr 05
cd 449 Nov 05
cd 514 Jan 06
cd 618 Apr 06
cd 665 Jul 06
cd 617 Nov 06
cd 604 Apr 07
cd 956 Aug 07
cd 690 Nov 07 (26%)
cd 771 Apr 08 24%
cd 737 Sep 08 27% Atripla
cd 648 Jan  09 27%
cd 627 Apr 09 25%
cd 607 Oct 09 25%
cd 676 Jan 10 25%
cd 811 Jun 10 25%
cd 922 Nov 10 27%
cd 860 Apr 11 28%
cd 767 Jul 11 24%
cd 843 Oct 11 27%
cd 1350 Jan 12 27%
cd 756   Jun 12 27%
cd 1151 Oct 12 35%
cd 965  Jan 13 36%
cd 875 May 13 32% Eviplera
cd 845 Jul 13  30% und.

Offline Nancy

  • Member
  • Posts: 59
  • No one belongs in jail for a Plant!!!
    • The Human Solution International
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #86 on: June 28, 2007, 12:42:31 AM »
Hi all,

A few of you know me.  Most of you don't.  Been a long time since I check-in.  Been too busy trying to forget I've been so ill.

I'm 53 and was diagnosed in 1993.  But for all practical purposes, i've been living with this disease since 1985 when my younger brother was diagnosed and died 5 years later.  So me sitting here all these years later is the ultimate of stupidity!!

I was abandonded by the man who infected me and met my husband (who was then, and still is HIV-) a year later.  He just gave me a ration for actually forgetting our 12th wedding anniversary a couple weeks ago. 

We've gone thru a few hard years with me in and out of the hospital with cancer surgery's, radiation therapy,  2 intestinal blockages (caused by the radiation), then had to have 2 feet of intestines removed because they fried them too much.  Then another cancer surgery.  Oh well, I'm still kicking.  Along with dietary changes because of meds, I had to make the ultimate sacrifice..... DAIRY!!!  I didn't realize how much I loved my Lactose!!  Gave up drinking, then a few years later gave up smoking (after 30 years), then to have to give up Ice Cream and Chocolate!! 

Ok Moffie, I checked in ;).....  Where are my roses!!!!????  Love you
Deborah Cadigan-Little
Diagnosed Oct 1993
Member since Sept 2002
Meds Dec 2003

Offline ubotts

  • Member
  • Posts: 347
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #87 on: June 28, 2007, 01:19:50 AM »
Hi..
I learned in 1987 i had hiv..at that time my t cells were 675 and i was told not
to worry. Ha easy for her to say..I was 33 yrs old then..I didnt want to take
meds because i seen what it did to my lover, who died of aids in 2001. I waited
till 2004 to take meds....I put it off as long as i could..Didnt want to deal with
the side effect..But one day i was xmas shopping (which used to be fun) and
i was dragged around by my friends in the stores..I felt like crap..3 weeks later
i knew something was very wrong. So i went to an infectious diease center in NYC.........My tcell were down to 27 and my VL was sky high..So they put
me on sustiva viread and videx..Sustiva get me nightmares and eventually it
didnt work for me anymore..so then they put me on that one a day pill Tresavar/
(not sure of the correct spelling of that med..Well i was on it for 3 weeks and
had the squirts so bad, i demaned a change..So now iam on Combiviar and Kaltrea
which is working well..Been on this combo for 3 yrs now..My tcells went from
27 to 241 and viral load is undectable..But i cant seem to get passed 300 tcells.
I have been looking at all your numbers and all of you got past 300 tcell and better..I was told since i waited so long to go on meds, that i would never pass
300 tcells..Has anyone here had a very low tcell count and is now passed 300
tcells.....Ive had aids, which means my tcells were below 250, but then i was
back to having 302 tcells and then they say, oh..your hiv..This is bull to me..
That was before i even took any meds..My number were flucuating like crazy
without meds........Now that iam on meds for 5 yrs now, i can seem to get
passed 300...Does anyone have a clue...because i dont..HElLPME ON THIS ONE>
Thank for your time and patience..
Live Love Laugh and dance like no ones watching.
Laughter is the best medicine, so try to have a laugh everyday..Even if your not feeling your best, think about something that was funny at one time in your life and work with it..   :o)

Offline CallingAllAngels

  • Member
  • Posts: 14
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #88 on: July 17, 2007, 01:24:31 PM »
I'm not a long-termer yet. I got HIV about 3 and a half years ago, and I've found out recently that I've got it. I'm ready to jump into the fight, both feet first. I just want to say that I admire all of you folks!

Offline ubotts

  • Member
  • Posts: 347
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #89 on: July 18, 2007, 07:07:35 PM »
 ;) Hi there,
Just jump right in and ask any questions you may have.. Iam sure will be able
to help you..
Live Love Laugh and dance like no ones watching.
Laughter is the best medicine, so try to have a laugh everyday..Even if your not feeling your best, think about something that was funny at one time in your life and work with it..   :o)

Offline hoyle63

  • New Member
  • Posts: 2
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #90 on: July 23, 2007, 08:42:51 AM »
Hey Folks!

I'm Hoyle and 44. I tested poz in 1986. Didn't get sick until ~03 when I dropped over 40 lbs and had trouble breathing. Later found out it was KS in my lung (oh the joy of an open lung biopsy!) Chemo fixed that and a couple of skin lesions that I had.

Currently retired RN and living in north Mississippi with my partner who is also poz.

Pretty nice having the time now to do what I always wanted to do 'if I didn't have to work all the time'. Would be even nicer if I felt like I did when I was younger so I could enjoy it more! Got those frequent flyer milies stacking up.

On Sustiva/Combivir since Aug03. The hallucinations and dreams from the Sus ave subsided somewhat , but every now and then I get a flashback <grin>.

Glad there is a forum out here for PLU. Wish I had found you guys sooner!
surviving since 1981!

Hoyle

Offline Dachshund

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,999
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #91 on: July 24, 2007, 08:00:22 AM »
Welcome Hoyle,

Glad you found us...we can always use another southern boy.

Hal
(who is just up the road a piece in Memphis)


Offline just_joe

  • Member
  • Posts: 42
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #92 on: July 30, 2007, 04:05:46 PM »
Hey guys. I'm Joe. I'm a 48 year old man living in California. I was diagnosed in 1994 but based on where my numbers were at the time the doctor guesstimated that I'd been positive for probably 12 years prior. You name the drug, I've practically been on them all. Seems like medicine keeps pulling a rabbit out of the hat just when I think all is lost. I'm currently on Prezista and TMC-125 and for the first time in a long time I've been undetectable nine months in a row and my t-cells went from 6 to 60. I think I'm gonna still stick around for a while.  :)

Offline MOONLIGHT1114

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  • Posts: 1,918
  • Cheech 2.2.94 - 4.23.10 We miss you so much!
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #93 on: July 30, 2007, 05:27:46 PM »
Hi Everyone,

My name is Cindy, I am 37 years old and live in the suburbs of Washington, DC.  I was diagnosed on 12/22/93 and seroconverted sometime in 1992.  My BF and I had dated in high school, had gone our separate ways for about five years, and then started dating again in Jan. '92.  We bought our home together in Feb. '93 and were starting our lives together!  I went for my women's exam in Dec. '93.  I hadn't tested since '91 in college, and knew I would continue to be in this monogamous relationship with my BF, so I got tested again.  I thought it would be a good idea to get a "baseline" just in case.  I was so surprised that I tested pos.  I could count on one hand (with fingers left over), the number of times we didn't use protection!  I drove home that evening thinking that I would be able to tackle this, as I had been diabetic since age 11, and was used to being on a schedule for meds, etc.  I just wasn't sure how long I would live.  My biggest worry was getting home and telling my BF that HE must have infected me because I had tested negative in college on more than one occassion.  We got engaged a week later on Dec. 30th '93, and he said he would go get tested soon.  In Feb. '94 my fiance went to get "tested" and said he was pos.  I found out from him later that he had tested pos in May '88 and had known he was pos all along!  He knew it and didn't tell me.  This was all very difficult for him to deal with, being a long-haired rock 'n' roll rebel in the late 80s and early 90s.  We married in Oct. '94 and just shy of our first anniversary, he got sick with non-Hodgkins lymphoma, hadn't been taking his AZT or anything.  I had just started on AZT around that time, in the Fall of '95.  My husband died in Aug. '96 at age 28.  I was widowed at age 26, no children.  I maintained my independence, fought to keep this home that I still live in, and kept up with my docs appts.  A month later in Sept. '96 the PIs came out and I was on them from '96 - '02.  I had started dating, and had a 2yr LTR during that time from '97 - '99.  A lot of disclosing and a lot of rejection also, but my counts were pretty good, VL good, so I considered myself lucky.  No OIs or hospitalization (even to this day).  In '02 I had a genotype done and the PIs weren't working, so I switched to Sustiva/Zerit/Videx EC.  Another LTR in 2003.  First signs of lipo in 2004.  Another LTR from June '04 until Dec '06 (I was with neg guys, never pos, still can't figure out where they are hiding.....).  Back in Fall 2005 my doc stopped the Videx and Zerit, and instead tried Truvada with the Sustiva.  In 2006 I started to get my face back some.  I have been single since last Dec., because my BF didn't want to face life with a pos partner.  I wish he would have told me sooner!  This was after we had almost completed building our new home in another state, after I had switched jobs, after I had made major lifestyle changes to get ready for my exciting new future, which I thought was a "sure thing!"  All for nothing, but I dodged a bullet by being dumped, THAT I do believe, lol.  Labs are good now (see below), I have been on insulin since age 11 (on a pump now), I have an injured neck and back with disk degeneration and fibromyalgia, and I go to see my chiropractor regularly.  I am unemployed (over 2 mos now) but holding out for a good job that is right for me, with good benefits.  This is a lot to deal with, being single and alone, but its manageable.  Somedays, barely manageable, but I am hanging in there.

I still have my mind, and now I have all of you, too.  What a gift this site has been for me over the past few weeks! 

Thanks for listening,

Cindy in Maryland
HIV+ since '93, 1/12 - CD4 785 and undet.   WOO-HOO!!

Offline smalltown66

  • Member
  • Posts: 73
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #94 on: August 01, 2007, 06:56:53 PM »
Hi to all

I am a 41 year old gwm from Ohio. I was first tested for HIV in 1995 and received a HIV positive result. 1 month later had my first CD4 with a result of 8. I was immediately diagnosed as AIDS. I was immediately placed on AZT, the only approved drug at the time. My only complications during this time was Kaposis Sarcoma of the lung and lymph nodes. I was told that six months to two years was the accepted prognosis. In early 1996 the "drug cocktail" was introduced and I began immediately on therapy.

Now after 12 years I still am fighting with this disease. My numbers are fair now (CD4 400) (VL undetectable). Over the last 2-3 years, the fight with side effects has begun. First was kidney stones, then 2 heart stints. Next diabetes and low testosterone. Now Osteoporosis and kidney disease. Not complaining but very thankful to be alive.

Glad to have recently found this forum. Hope to get to know more of you.


Mr. Smalltown66 :)
Lifting the weight of the world sure is easier with others with the same goal.

Offline J.R.E.

  • Member
  • Posts: 7,280
  • Joined Dec-2003 Living positive, since 1985.
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #95 on: August 01, 2007, 07:30:31 PM »

 Not complaining but very thankful to be alive.



Mr. Smalltown66 :)


I hear you loud and clear there !! Welcome to the forums, and thanks for sharing !!


All the best-----Ray
Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 25 mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
Metoprolol tartrate 25mg



http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=40802.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=45159.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=39722.msg495621;topicseen#msg495621

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=46806.0

http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=39414.msg491701#msg491701


Diagnosed positive in 1985,.. In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started on  HAART on October 24th, 2003.

 As of 12/10/14,  t-cells are at 350,  Previous 8/25/14--- 402/ Viral load remains <40

 Current % is at 13% / Previous 8/25/14 11%

  
 63 years young.

Offline JeffreyM

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  • Posts: 96
  • 11:11
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #96 on: August 08, 2007, 03:52:08 AM »
Sorry to re post, I'm new and did not notice this introduction thread, Thanks


Hello Everybody!  I'm Jeffrey from Glendale Ca, I have been living with the virus for 16 1/2 years.

While I was a child I was raped from the age of 11-15.  I lost interest in school, having a severe speech impediment did not help, I always knew the answers in class but did not raise my hand because I could not even get my words out, when I did,  I would be laughed at, called fagot, queer, blah yada  blah.  As a result of the abuse I became promiscuous at a young age. I was in the gay bars in Phoenix at age 18.

I had an original diagnosis of AIDS in 1991 with cryptosporidiosis.  I had 6 t cells and the Doctors told me to get my affairs in order.  I remember taking AZT, that's  all there was.  Somehow I managed to stay alive while many of my friends died. 
The early 90's were very hard. I was sick all the time, my friend crypto returned in 1993 and almost killed me.
I took every new drug that came out and managed to get through.  I felt horrible all the time, vomiting from the medications. I was exhausted and had a very low t cell count, I could not stay awake for longer than 4 hours, then would sleep for 10- 11 hours.  I was losing weight and kept getting fevers, night sweats, diarreah like volcanic lava erupted from me all the time. I had to go into the hospital a lot.  Getting IV's of fluid, from dehydrating and needing potasium, I kept passing out.

In 1996 My Mom was diagnosed with cancer.  I was taking Epsom and Videx, the old wafer things!  Chewing them was like  this horrible chalky taste. I also took another blue pill it was rectangular and did not go down easily. I think my t cells were around 90 or so while I was helping to care of my Mom. She had colon cancer, then it returned to her lung. In 1997 the protease inhibitor crixivan was released and the combination saved my life. It was very bittersweet because I lost my Mom Betty in August 1997.

I had severe bouts of depression and anxiety for the rest of the 90's it was very bad, zerit was added  and I experienced the pain of needles  and broken glass going into the bottoms of my feet and the palms of my hands.  I think my t cells were almost 200.   My mental  health was shattered, but I was starting to get a little better, not sleeping as much, eating more.  A year after my Mom died I met a man with HIV.  He was very kind hearted and we started to date. I was up and around and things were going good.  I met my future partners parents, and he met my Dad. I felt secure and happy, although in retrospect I think I settled because I didn't think anybody else would have me. A year after we were seeing each other, my partners Mom went to the airport and jumped off the 6Th level of the parking structure. She did not survive, so now we were  having to deal with suicide. 


This is the most gut wrenching thing I have ever been through.  I felt rage, anger, sorrow, guilt, a roller coaster of emotions.  My partner was devastated, speechless, and I could even attend the memorial, I was disgusted that a person would just give up after my Mom fought so hard to live.  I still have a question mark over my head over the catastrophe.

In 2000, To escape Phoenix, my partner and I moved to Glendale CA.  Right next door to his snottier than hell, ex boyfriend who was doing his best to be the gay Martha Stewart!  I started to feel like I should break up, but holy crap his MOM KILLED HERSELF!  So I stayed with him.  in 2001 I became sick with I can't remember what, colitis or something.  I was depressed doing these obligatory events with people I did not really like.  I made nice thought and was a good Hubby.

 We had planned to go to Six Flags on 9/11, my partner rushed in and woke me up, he said a plane just crashed into the World Trade Center. Like every other American, we sat, crying, shaking for what seemed like a week glued to the TV.  After this, I think built a brick wall around myself.  I stopped talking to people, except a very select few.

In 2003 I developed immune idiopathic thrombocenic purpura.  I was turning black and blue everywhere.  I knew I had a low platelet count, but did not know about ITP, http://www.pdsa.org/index.htm  The Hematologists/Oncologist and other Doctors were confused at first to why I had this while it is a very rare blood disorder with about 200,000 Americans living with it. Steroids were prescribed for the first part of the protocol and I ballooned from 170# to 240#.  The steroids failed, so a splenectomy was performed.  Thanks goodness it was done laproscopicly, only 4 tiny cuts on my tummy, instead of being cut from side to side. The surgery was a success.  I was told there is no guarantee on how long it would
work.

In early 2005 I stated taking down photos in our home.  I stripped the walls, took down the spice rack, the one that sat there looking the same, everything looked the same. The limbo type life I  was living.  I was surviving, but just a shell the person I used to be. I knew I had to get out of a bad relationship.  the only thing holding us together was pain.  I moved into my own place in February.  With a lot of work my previous significant other and I have remained friends.  We share joint custody of our little dog, oh thank the gods for that one without her I do not think I would have made it.
 
 I sat alone for most of 2005- 2006.  Depression, a break up of an 8 year LTR, left me just wallowing.  I went very very deep inside myself to pull out of it.  With the help of anti depressants and therapy I have walked through the pain,the guilt of my mind set of thinking why am I still here and so many talented loving people did not live.  I came out the other side just at the beginning of this year.  I'm out of my cocoon and have started living life. 
At 43 I feel so very comfortable in my skin and know that I am truly blessed. I am grateful to my doctors, friends,& POZ magazine.

I have just started to date this Spring. I have started drawing. Now I say what I feel when I'm feeling it. My entire life I felt like an outsider.  Looking in at people living life. Now I'm living life, every day every minute. If anybody would have told me in 1991, that in 2007 I would be alive, mostly healthy (fatigue and PN get me sometimes), with a 500 CD4 count and an UN detectable viral load (wait we didn't have Geno's and phenos then) I would have thought they were crazy.

 I look forward to getting to know others on this board.  Thanks for reading this and if your having a bad day, just hang in there and remember that it will get better. One book changed my life, The Power Of Intention by Wayne Dyer.  This book saved my life and the little miracles that happen all around me are proof that "When you change the way you look at things, the things you look at change". WD
 
My best to everybody here and I hope to be a great fellow forum member. A special thanks to MOONLIGHT1114, I am so grateful to have met you on the other site. Thank you making me laugh!
JeffreyM
« Last Edit: August 08, 2007, 06:17:13 AM by JeffreyM »

Offline MOONLIGHT1114

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,918
  • Cheech 2.2.94 - 4.23.10 We miss you so much!
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #97 on: August 08, 2007, 08:55:46 AM »
Hi Jeffrey~

Welcome to the threads!  I'm glad you finally stopped by and shared your story here.  YOU are here for a reason, sweetie.  I just know you'll be a great influence to others in these threads, and we're here to pick you up, too, whenever you need us to!

Much Love~

Cindy, your "G-L-A-M-O-R-O-U-S- straight girl!"    :-*    :-*    :-*
HIV+ since '93, 1/12 - CD4 785 and undet.   WOO-HOO!!

Offline kellyspoppi

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  • Posts: 153
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #98 on: August 08, 2007, 09:05:34 AM »
courageous story jeffrey. thank you for sharing it and we look forward to hearing more from you in these forums.

kellyspoppi

Offline DanielMark

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,475
Re: Introduce yourself
« Reply #99 on: August 10, 2007, 05:00:04 PM »
Welcome Jeffrey,

Your struggles have been many, but clearly you have learned from them and not let them beat you down.

I admire that!



Daniel
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

MAY 2000 LAB RESULTS: CD4 678
VL STILL UNDETECTABLE

DIAGNOSED IN 1988

 


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