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How long did it take you to adjust?

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doyourowndamndishes:
Hey,

With me, it took about a year after hearing the initial confirmation (I just knew I was poz so went to a new doctor to get it confirmed) before I was ready to deal with it.  My previous doctor I never felt confiding in him about hiv when I thought I was infected so he's not a good doctor for me.  How honest of an opinion could I get if I did not feel comfie confiding in him and being 100% honest with him?!?  A friend at the time told me about his family doctor who also specializes in hiv care and he was able to get me in to see this doctor.  It took me a year, not that I had a problem with being poz.  Even my doctor had asked how I would deal with it if I was infected (Pre lab results) and asked the same question post lab results) and if I had a strong enough support system if I needed help.  Being poz was not an issue, how I got it, yes, but I was not in a head space at that time where it was important to me.  The lab results initially were vl 150,000+ cd4s 260s and since at that point in time meds were not really necessary I took the time I needed to come into the head space required to manage the disease.  The second lab tests, again a year later, showed a drop in cd4s (low 180s) and it was recommended that I start meds and go on bactrim to prevent PCP.  The rest is history.

Cheers,

Alan

Eldon:
The adjustment starts when you accept your situation. There will be good and bad days though. But mainly good days.

otherplaces:

Thanks for all the replies,

I guess at some point it's just time to buckle down and start chipping away at the mountain. I feel I have accepted my diagnosis, it's just that I don't know where to begin. I often wondered if maybe one of my friends would say to me, 'brian I love you and I want you to quit smoking and I'm ready to help you through this no matter what.' :P That was my fantasy friend. I guess the answer is I start here, stand up and start chipping away at the mountain.

The other thing that screws with my life that I forgot to mention is SLEEP! How could I forget? I have a horrible time getting to sleep. Sometimes I really feel like quite a mess.

thanks,
brian

aztecan:
Hey Brian,

In an earlier thread, someone asked when I adjusted. My reply was that I adjust every day.

I wasn't being flippant. I was serious. There isn't a day that goes by that I don't make some sort of adjustment in my life - sometimes because of HIV, but more often these days because I'm simply no longer a 20-something, or a 30-something. Come to think of it, I am barely a 40-something. EEP!

If I might make a suggestion - don't try to change everything at once. Life is changeable enough as it is, let alone trying to change the habits of a lifetime - or a long time - in the span of a few short months.

As Eldon said, the first step is acceptance of your situation. This doesn't mean giving in to the virus, but accepting the fact that it is now a part of your life and will be from this day forward.

That is enough of a task to start with. For me, it is a balancing act. It means balancing the knowledge that I must do certain things, such as taking my meds, with an overwhelming desire to live my life to the fullest degree possible. I think I pretty much have that down now, so I can look at other things in my life that I might like to change and start working on them.

I used to drink plenty. No, change that to "lots." I loved beer. I still love beer. I also love scotch whiskey, wine, etc. Then, another change came along. I found I was gluten intolerant. I no longer can eat or drink anything containing gluten, i.e. made with wheat, barley, rye or oats.

That pretty much ended my beer drinking. I did cheat once, about two years ago. I just had to have a beer. I did, and paid for it for weeks.

Now, I still would like a beer, but instead I have a glass of wine. It's not as satisfying for me, but it is OK.

These are just examples of how my life's path has led me to change ways in which I live. Just taking one thing at a time.

So, don't beat yourself up because you didn't quit smoking, drinking, eating poorly, sleeping badly, etc., all in one instant. You didn't fall into these habits overnight, don't try to change them that way.

Above all, enjoy your life. Grab each day and make the most of it, even those days that aren't so good.

HUGS,

Mark

michaelman333:
Thanx for this post ... i seriously am dealing with this issue big time... i lately have fallen into a depression and seem very upset a lot ... i am still adjusting and wondered how long it took as well...

I was diagnosed Nov. 30 2005
i seemed to jump right in and just attack being poz and all that it entails... starting meds, research studies, dr.visits, support gfroups and now it is all slowing down and i am now feeling like i am  dropping and losing myself and my energy ...

I am angry/sad/ and the sleep factor .. lets forget about that ...

anyway i just wantedyou to know you arent alone ...

hugs
M

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