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Author Topic: How do you stay optimistic  (Read 7390 times)

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Offline cityboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 144
How do you stay optimistic
« on: September 30, 2007, 10:55:21 PM »
I was diagnosed 2 months ago and cd4 count was low-300 and I had to go on meds.  I have always been safe with sex, and don't even know how I became positive.  I thought I would not have to take meds for a while.  I feel so cheated that other people have not had to take them for so long.  Take the meds every day acknowledges my health status.  Most days I am OK with it, today I just feel so defeated and depressed

Offline milker

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,034
  • Protected phone sex
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #1 on: September 30, 2007, 11:01:18 PM »
Hi Cityboy,

you should be optimistic already because with the meds you should see your VL going to undetectable, and hopefully this will happen sooner than later. I saw your posts you said you were infected in october 2006 and had a cd4 count of 258, are you sure about the date of infection? Where you testing regularly ?

Milker.
mid-dec: stupid ass
mid-jan: seroconversion
mid-feb: poz
mar 07: cd4 432 (35%) vl 54000
may 07: cd4 399 (28%) vl 27760
jul 07: cd4 403 (26%) vl 99241
oct 07: cd4 353 (24%) vl 29993
jan 08: cd4 332 (26%) vl 33308
mar 08: cd4 392 (23%) vl 75548
jun 08: cd4 325 (27%) vl 45880
oct 08: cd4 197 (20%) vl 154000 <== aids diagnosis
nov 2 08 start Atripla
nov 30 08: cd4 478 (23%) vl 1880 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
feb 19 09: cd4 398 (24%) vl 430 getting there!
apr 23 09: cd4 604 (29%) vl 50 woohoo :D :D
jul 30 09: cd4 512 (29%) vl undetectable :D :D
may 27 10: cd4 655 (32%) vl undetectable :D :D

Now accepting applications from blowjob ninjas™

Offline IzPoz

  • Member
  • Posts: 332
  • God, grant me the serenity...
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #2 on: September 30, 2007, 11:14:56 PM »
Regardless of when, or how low the counts were, staying optimistic is a way of life, with or without HIV. Be thankful every day that you were diagnosed in a time where there are successful treatments out there to help get your bloodwork the way it should be.

Just try to keep the faith and be thankful to see the sun rise and set on another day.

Don't dwell on the negatives... focus on the positives in your life.

It may be cloudy outside, but the sun is still shining and will eventually burn a hole right through the clouds to shine down on you.

Be well.
The reason angels can fly is that they take themselves so lightly. ~ Chesterton G. K.

Offline cityboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 144
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #3 on: September 30, 2007, 11:20:45 PM »
Hi,
First doc said I was 258, the second one said 300, not sure of infection date...I just posted in newly infected, I just mentioned the information you are asking about.  Yes I was getting tested regularly every 6 months.  VL just went from around 34,000 to 154.  Thinking too much about life before being positive, I never thought this would happen to me, having a really bad time with this today.



Hi Cityboy,

you should be optimistic already because with the meds you should see your VL going to undetectable, and hopefully this will happen sooner than later. I saw your posts you said you were infected in october 2006 and had a cd4 count of 258, are you sure about the date of infection? Where you testing regularly ?

Milker.

Offline milker

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #4 on: September 30, 2007, 11:23:08 PM »
VL just went from around 34,000 to 154.  Thinking too much about life before being positive, I never thought this would happen to me, having a really bad time with this today.
Well this is fucking great news!!!!! The meds are working well for you!!

Now that your the problem is taking care of physically you can concentrate on the mind. That takes time, but there is help out there. I'm happy that your virus has been knocked off so fast :)

Milker.
mid-dec: stupid ass
mid-jan: seroconversion
mid-feb: poz
mar 07: cd4 432 (35%) vl 54000
may 07: cd4 399 (28%) vl 27760
jul 07: cd4 403 (26%) vl 99241
oct 07: cd4 353 (24%) vl 29993
jan 08: cd4 332 (26%) vl 33308
mar 08: cd4 392 (23%) vl 75548
jun 08: cd4 325 (27%) vl 45880
oct 08: cd4 197 (20%) vl 154000 <== aids diagnosis
nov 2 08 start Atripla
nov 30 08: cd4 478 (23%) vl 1880 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
feb 19 09: cd4 398 (24%) vl 430 getting there!
apr 23 09: cd4 604 (29%) vl 50 woohoo :D :D
jul 30 09: cd4 512 (29%) vl undetectable :D :D
may 27 10: cd4 655 (32%) vl undetectable :D :D

Now accepting applications from blowjob ninjas™

Offline Life

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,388
  • Member 2005
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #5 on: September 30, 2007, 11:24:00 PM »
Doesnt mean tomorrow has to be the same as today...

Eric

Offline cityboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 144
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #6 on: September 30, 2007, 11:30:09 PM »
My doc wouldn't tell me CD4 until next time I do blood work in December, he says it takes long for CD4 to go up.  Mentally I have a lot of stuff going on to deal wtih this-I think I am just in denial most of the time and just live my life, its the only way I can handle it how did u get thru it?

Well this is fucking great news!!!!! The meds are working well for you!!

Now that your the problem is taking care of physically you can concentrate on the mind. That takes time, but there is help out there. I'm happy that your virus has been knocked off so fast :)

Milker.

Offline milker

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  • Protected phone sex
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #7 on: September 30, 2007, 11:41:15 PM »
Cityboy, the meds are there to prevent the virus from multiplying, not to increase the CD4s. The CD4s increase very very slowly, so what you should dance about is that the meds are working for you because the VL has gone down that fast. Then your immune system will slowly recover, but this takes some time. Your doctor is right, it takes time. The first step was to kill the virus and you achieved it very fast, this is very good news!

Milker.
mid-dec: stupid ass
mid-jan: seroconversion
mid-feb: poz
mar 07: cd4 432 (35%) vl 54000
may 07: cd4 399 (28%) vl 27760
jul 07: cd4 403 (26%) vl 99241
oct 07: cd4 353 (24%) vl 29993
jan 08: cd4 332 (26%) vl 33308
mar 08: cd4 392 (23%) vl 75548
jun 08: cd4 325 (27%) vl 45880
oct 08: cd4 197 (20%) vl 154000 <== aids diagnosis
nov 2 08 start Atripla
nov 30 08: cd4 478 (23%) vl 1880 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
feb 19 09: cd4 398 (24%) vl 430 getting there!
apr 23 09: cd4 604 (29%) vl 50 woohoo :D :D
jul 30 09: cd4 512 (29%) vl undetectable :D :D
may 27 10: cd4 655 (32%) vl undetectable :D :D

Now accepting applications from blowjob ninjas™

Offline emeraldize

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,353
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #8 on: September 30, 2007, 11:42:14 PM »
Hi Cityboy,

You noted you think you're in denial most of the time. May I suggest something that worked for me? And, still does.

Go the opposite of denial. Plunge straight into the truth like it's a welcoming pool. Research everything that is of interest to you. Ask all the questions you like.

Letting the truth be what it is, combined with knowing my optimism directly affects my immune system, enables me to follow this course of action over and over again.

Em
« Last Edit: October 01, 2007, 10:31:25 PM by emeraldize »

Offline northernguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,347
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #9 on: October 01, 2007, 01:32:15 AM »
... I feel so cheated that other people have not had to take them for so long.  Take the meds every day acknowledges my health status...

You know, as a poz guy playing the waiting game with meds, I have to say its a bit overrated.  I know its tough getting the dx and having to go on meds right away, but imagine what its like to wait, and wait...

My vl and percentages aren't so great that I can fool myself into believing I'm a long term non-progressor, so each set of labs becomes a guessing game.  Is this the time? There's also the knowledge that HIV is wreaking havoc on my body, but not being able to treat it yet.  So don't feel "cheated".
Apr 28/06 cd4 600 vl 10,600 cd% 25
Nov 8/09 cd4 510 vl 49,5000 cd% 16
Jan 16/10 cd4 660 vl 54,309 cd% 16
Feb 17/10 Started Atripla
Mar 7/10 cd4 710 vl 1,076 cd% 21
Apr 18/10 cd4 920 vl 268 cd% 28
Jun 19/10 cd4 450 vl 60 cd% 25
Aug 15/10 cd4 680 vl 205 cd% 27
Apr 3/11 cd4 780 vl <40 cd% 30
Jul 17/11 cd4 960 vl <40 cd%33
April 15/12 cd4 1,010 vl <40 cd% 39
April 20/12 Switched to Viramune + Truvada
Aug 2/12 cd4 1040, vl <40, cd% 38
Oct 19 cd4 1,110 vl <40 cd% 41

Offline DanielMark

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,475
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #10 on: October 01, 2007, 07:11:36 AM »
Cityboy,

This is all new to you. Anything new in life takes time to adjust to.

With time, your thoughts will be less focussed on what your life used to be like, and you'll learn to live in the present. You may even learn to appreciate it. Meds are not your enemy. Be gentle with yourself.

Daniel
MEDS: REYATAZ & KIVEXA (SINCE AUG 2008)

MAY 2000 LAB RESULTS: CD4 678
VL STILL UNDETECTABLE

DIAGNOSED IN 1988

Offline Moffie65

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,755
  • Living POZ since 1983
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #11 on: October 01, 2007, 09:37:36 AM »
In answer to the question posed in your title:

Learn to exclude "EXOPECTATION" from your life!

At 24 years and counting, I still struggle with this one, but when I can work through, it does make it easier for optimism to be the order of the day.

Love,
Tim.
The Bible contains 6 admonishments to homosexuals,
and 362 to heterosexuals.
This doesn't mean that God doesn't love heterosexuals,
It's just that they need more supervision.
Lynn Lavne

Offline aztecan

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,399
  • 29 years positive, 57 years a pain in the butt
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #12 on: October 01, 2007, 10:23:17 AM »
Hey Cityboy,

As Tim (Moffie) said, try not to set up expectations in life because they get in the way of reality.

This is very new to you. It is normal to feel as you do. I know I did.

Remember that none of us has any guarantees. We only have today. So, my only advice is to take each day as it comes and make the most of it.

HUGS,

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

Offline woodshere

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,477
  • ain't no shame in my game
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #13 on: October 01, 2007, 10:46:11 AM »
One thing I learned early on is that HIV affects each person differently and each person handles their HIV in a different way. What works for some doesn't for others.  I deal with HIV like I deal with all problems I have had in my life.  I had bad days before I was poz and I have bad days now.  I have a very easy time accepting my reality and going from there.  Other may have a real struggle to deal with being poz.  The important thing is that we are dealing and that is what you must do, find the best way for you to deal with this new part of your life.

As far as your CD4 count, it took me over 18 months to reach 357, but it finally happened. But you know what,  I didn't feel any different that I did when it hovered around the 250 mark for months and months.  I would read about others who had huge jumps or high CD4 counts and get so jealous.  I guess I was suffering from a form of penis envy except it was CD4 envy.  The important thing is that your VL load stay undetectable.

I wish you the best,
Woods
"Let us give pubicity to HV/AIDS and not hide it..." "One of the things destroying people with AIDS is the stigma we attach to it."   Nelson Mandela

Offline StrongGuy

  • Member
  • Posts: 492
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #14 on: October 01, 2007, 12:51:56 PM »
I don't dwell on my despair, but the possibilities. I also find keeping up-to-date on current advancements, future outlooks, ongoing research, listening and learning from my doctors and/or people who know what they are talking about (not those who think they do for everyone).

Also, being surrounded by friends who are living lives with HIV and, no matter what they are going through,
seek to bring you up and let you live your life. Seeing their possibilities also fuels my hope and optimism.

I've had so-called "healthy people" close to me drop dead in a lick (No warnings. No tidy predictions.) and cheated of a lot of living, and after dealing with that I don't fear death at all or waste my days dwelling on it. If I die or something goes array tomorrow, so be it. I lived today.

I've had some rough bumps in the road mentally and physically, but It's all made me stronger. I glance back at my past (never forgetting, but not dwelling), and I live for today, and whatever the future holds it will be what it will be. We all have rough days, but living day after day consumed by worry or fear-- devoid of optimism, well, for ME, would be a waste.

I take my meds and I look at it as fighting the toxic HIV beast, not as a defeat. If anything it has made me feel more in control.

Just my outlook on how I stay optimistic...

Everyone has their own way!

Be well,
MIKE :)

"Get your medical advice from Doctors or medical professionals who you trust and know your history."

"Beware of the fortune teller doom and gloomers who seek to bring you down and are only looking for company, purpose and validation - not your best physical/mental interests."

"You know you all are saying that this is incurable. When the real thing you should be saying is it's not curable at the present time' because as we know, the great strides we've made in medicine." - Elizabeth Edwards

Offline cityboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 144
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #15 on: October 01, 2007, 10:18:39 PM »
What causes someone to be a fast or slow progressor?   Why could u not take the meds earlier?  I am learning so if these questions seem dumb, I am just a beginner. :)


You know, as a poz guy playing the waiting game with meds, I have to say its a bit overrated.  I know its tough getting the dx and having to go on meds right away, but imagine what its like to wait, and wait...

My vl and percentages aren't so great that I can fool myself into believing I'm a long term non-progressor, so each set of labs becomes a guessing game.  Is this the time? There's also the knowledge that HIV is wreaking havoc on my body, but not being able to treat it yet.  So don't feel "cheated".

Offline mrtallguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 199
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #16 on: October 01, 2007, 10:31:23 PM »
Hey Cityboy,
I used to have a phrase on my refrigerator...it is no longer there but scribed forever in my mind:

I HAVE NO EXPECTATIONS, JUST DESIRES.

I desire to feel great today.....I desire to have an undetectable viral load....I desire for you to be at peace, etc.

DESIRES push us in uplifting and positive directions....EXPECTATIONS set us up for failure when we don't meet or fulfill those expectations.

So I DESIRE for you to be optimistic and to interact with this forum...this is an amazing collection of people unlike any that I have met anywhere!

Be Well....

Craig
I AM DETERMINED TO SEE THINGS DIFFERENTLY!
--ACIM

Offline cityboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 144
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #17 on: October 01, 2007, 10:32:17 PM »
Milker,
So once my meds kill this beast, then my immune system is not being tampered with so it can heal and increase CD4-is correct? Medicine takes longer than this to work for others?  So VL should go to under 50 later, is supposed to be that or lower I read?  
Thank you
Cityboy

Cityboy, the meds are there to prevent the virus from multiplying, not to increase the CD4s. The CD4s increase very very slowly, so what you should dance about is that the meds are working for you because the VL has gone down that fast. Then your immune system will slowly recover, but this takes some time. Your doctor is right, it takes time. The first step was to kill the virus and you achieved it very fast, this is very good news!

Milker.

Offline milker

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #18 on: October 01, 2007, 10:38:41 PM »
Milker,
So once my meds kill this beast, then my immune system is not being tampered with so it can heal and increase CD4-is correct? Medicine takes longer than this to work for others?  So VL should go to under 50 later, is supposed to be that or lower I read? 
Thank you
Cityboy

It is not that simple. CD4 recovery is still being studied, and we see people that get a CD4 count back in the 800s or even the 1000s in a year, where most people only have a dozen more CD4s a year.

What is important is that your meds are working, and I would celebrate. Your immune system may take a while to go back full speed but you have given it the opportunity to recover, well done.

Milker.
mid-dec: stupid ass
mid-jan: seroconversion
mid-feb: poz
mar 07: cd4 432 (35%) vl 54000
may 07: cd4 399 (28%) vl 27760
jul 07: cd4 403 (26%) vl 99241
oct 07: cd4 353 (24%) vl 29993
jan 08: cd4 332 (26%) vl 33308
mar 08: cd4 392 (23%) vl 75548
jun 08: cd4 325 (27%) vl 45880
oct 08: cd4 197 (20%) vl 154000 <== aids diagnosis
nov 2 08 start Atripla
nov 30 08: cd4 478 (23%) vl 1880 !!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
feb 19 09: cd4 398 (24%) vl 430 getting there!
apr 23 09: cd4 604 (29%) vl 50 woohoo :D :D
jul 30 09: cd4 512 (29%) vl undetectable :D :D
may 27 10: cd4 655 (32%) vl undetectable :D :D

Now accepting applications from blowjob ninjas™

Offline aztecan

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,399
  • 29 years positive, 57 years a pain in the butt
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #19 on: October 01, 2007, 10:44:43 PM »
The meds fight the virus and, it is hoped, drop the amount of virus in the blood stream to less than 50, which is undetectable using current technology.

This allows your body to recover and your CD4s to rise. (I use the term recover rather than heal simply because heal intimates destruction of the virus completely, which isn't possible at this time - and may never be.)

Anyway, how fast you recover and how rapidly your CD4 count climbs if very individual and is affected by genetics, nutrition, and myriad other things.

Hang in there Cityboy. Oh, and don't apologize for asking questions. We all have and, I for one, continue to do so.

HUGS,

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

Offline Falkore

  • Member
  • Posts: 70
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #20 on: October 02, 2007, 03:06:23 AM »
Each person reacts differently to the news of their HIV.  I admit that I was very scared when I first tested positive, not because of my own health, but because my partner at the time and I had NOT been using protections and I was the top 99% of the time.  I actually found an old journal from when I was 19-22 and how I didn't think I could live with HIV.  I was so scared of HIV at the time that I swore I would kill myself if I tested positive.  About that time I broke up with someone and then a few months later he told me he was HIV +.  Just before he told me I started dating a guy who volunteered for an HIV/AIDS hospice, so he got to see the worst that HIV can do to the human body.  He was there for the end of it all for some people.  I was scared that he came to my life just so I could have someone to support me when I came back HIV positive.  Thankfully at that time my test came back negative, as did the next several tests.

Then came June 30, 2005.  I tested positive myself.  I had a choice to make, and a very short time to make it.  Was I going to let 3 little letters destroy everything I had spend a lifetime building?  Was I going to give up just because I had a virus?  I decided that I was going to fight.  It took a little time and a little coaxing by both my boyfriend and the same good friend who worked for the hospice, but I decided that I would fight this virus.  I was not going to give up, I was not going to let this virus destroy me, and I was not going to "Go quietly into that good night."

How do I stay optimistic?  It's easy for me.  I accept that there are some things I can not control, so I do not spend any time fretting about them.  Instead of freaking out about things beyond my control, I focus my thoughts and energies into fixing things I CAN control.  While it's not fool proof, it does help.  I am positive... that will not change, so don't worry about it.  I can not control what will happen in 3 days, so I don't worry about it.  All I focus on is what I CAN change.  My health, my counts (to some extent), my food intake, my smoking, my exercise... etc.  What I can control is where I focus my energies, what I can't control, I don't worry about. 

This is what works for me, but not everyone can work like this.  I hope this helps.
"Ain't no shame in my flame"
Date:          CD4:     VL:
10/02/05     568       2,070
11/18/05     541       2,970
02/17/06     442       4,720
04/17/06     510       1,100
07/12/06     391       3,050
Start Atripla
09/22/06     595       Undet.
01/18/07     562       Undet.
05/25/07     540       Undet.
09/26/07     531       Undet.

tendai

  • Guest
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #21 on: October 02, 2007, 05:00:46 AM »
some days are good some days are bad some are worse but i try to find a reason to go on.  i think of my family, my friends, i dream and i tell myself is worth it and i have to fight for it.  i'm dreading taking meds but i will when i have to so i can go on living as long as possible. ;)

Offline Iggy

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,435
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #22 on: October 02, 2007, 12:15:25 PM »
I don't see any reason to have to be optimistic all the time - frankly I don't trust people who need to always be optimistic as I think they are in denial more than having a healthy outlook.

That said, it is important to be measured and realistic in your view of the future.  There are treatments and the possibility of future treatments that are significant advantages to people who are currently infected, and with an even better options likely for those recently infected and without any long term effects of the virus on their system.

So I say, don't even try to be stay optimistic.  Be down right pessimistic if you want at the moment or any moment if it helps you voice and understand your fears and frustrations.  Just always remember that at the end of the day there are many things for you to be hopeful about and that you have a lot that you can control about your own future.


Offline mrtallguy

  • Member
  • Posts: 199
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #23 on: October 02, 2007, 09:04:15 PM »
FALKORE....well said! Optimism is not about denial, rather about focusing on what we can change.  Being positive about being poz!

IGGY...the opposite of optimism is pessimism....I have never met a useful or desirable pessimist in my life! So if you had to choose to be an optimist or a pessimist.....which would it be?

For me optimism has nothing to do with denial which is problem all by itself.  There is always a bright side to every dark side....one side does not make the other side less in its intensity....they are both there...we, thank god, have the choice to focus on one or the other....the Optimist will focus on the good...Amen to that!

Be well...
Craig
I AM DETERMINED TO SEE THINGS DIFFERENTLY!
--ACIM

Offline NycJoe

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  • Posts: 244
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #24 on: October 02, 2007, 09:19:11 PM »
I don't think I really have a choice.  I have to remain optimistic..not to be naive..but to hope and work for the best.  As Craig said, the opposite is pessimism.  Of course I have up and down days but I always try my best to remain optimistic.  I refuse to give in to anything else for my own well being...Joe

Offline Life

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  • Posts: 2,388
  • Member 2005
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #25 on: October 02, 2007, 09:31:22 PM »
Sometimes I wonder if we short change ourselves in over thinking that we can't handle what life throws at us?   How could I overcome and deal with hiv??  Well, we are all here, right now doing it to the best of our ability given the stage of our hiv/aids diagnosis.   Staying optimistic and having some faith that better things are on the horizon gives me the chance to set hiv aside and return to a near normal routine..   I suppose when and if I have my first OI, I will deal with it as best I can.   But I certainly do not want to throw in the towel because of one of life's problems.

Optimism is ever so much a part of this site..  That is what aidsmeds is all about... Giving us the courage to face what lies ahead..

Eric
« Last Edit: October 02, 2007, 09:48:00 PM by Life »

Offline Oceanbeach

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #26 on: October 03, 2007, 12:41:21 AM »
I feel so cheated that other people have not had to take them for so long.  Take the meds every day acknowledges my health status.  Most days I am OK with it, today I just feel so defeated and depressed

Hi Cityboy,

Don't feel cheated... Sure that is easy for me to say (I know). mind if I tell you , of course not.  I was taking 30 pills each day when diagnosed w/AIDS in 1996.  I was taking my mid-day dose (which included 6 Norvir) at my friend's house.  He is HIV+ and was currently on meds at the time.  He noticed I appeared depressed over taking the meds and I confirmed, yes I was.

I had made the decision to not go on meds with my HIV+ diagnosis, a year prior, kept on working, did not see a doctor.  I was on my way to one of the Mexican border towns to get a big bottle of Antibiotics, go home and nurse the flu.  Stopped at a neighborhood bar on the way and got a taxi ride to the ER and PCP.

It has taken 10 years and some great doctors to put me back together again and I am almost there.  Now, I take 3 pills a day and rarely think about them except...... Did I take that last dose?  If you don't mind a pastry metaphor, a piece of cake.

Optimism, now that is a good question... How do I?  I have found that volunteering has been a help for me as it keeps me active, thinking and supporting something I believe in and the past 5 years, I have been involved in HIV/AIDS treatment and funding issues, so I hope my volunteer work has benefitted outher people living with HIV.  Now, for the moment we have all been waiting for... drum roll please.....the moral of the story is... it never hurts to get a good laugh.  Have the best day
Michael

Offline Jeffreyj

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #27 on: October 03, 2007, 06:14:43 AM »
We are all "Day to day" So, I tend to take each day as it comes. [Simple}
Positive since 1985

Offline Life

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #28 on: October 03, 2007, 11:10:50 AM »
For those out there that have helped keep us Optimistic...

Listen...
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=t0TvoCZJAJI

There are things in life you learn and
In time you'll see
Cause out there somewhere
It's all waiting
If you keep believing
So don't run, don't hide
It will be alright
You'll see, trust me
I'll be there watching over you

Just take a look through my eyes
There's a better place
somewhere out there
Just take a look through my eyes
Everything changes
You'll be amazed what you'll find
If you look through my eyes

There will be times on this journey
All you'll see is darkness
Out there somewhere daylight find you
If you keep believing

So don't run, don't hide
It will be alright
You see, trust me
I'll be there watching over you

All the things that you can change
There's a meaning in everything
And you will find all you need
There's so much to understand

Just take a look through my eyes
There's a better place
somewhere out there
Just take a look through my eyes
Everything changes
You'll be amazed what you'll find
If you look through my eyes

Take a look through my eyes
« Last Edit: October 03, 2007, 11:12:34 AM by Life »

Offline Iggy

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #29 on: October 03, 2007, 11:20:44 AM »

IGGY...the opposite of optimism is pessimism....I have never met a useful or desirable pessimist in my life! So if you had to choose to be an optimist or a pessimist.....which would it be?

Craig -

When life becomes so simplistic, so will my view point.  That you need to see things as a one-or-the-other is the point of my original post on the subject.

How about one needs be a little more complex than just seeing life as something that is broken down into camps of either an optimistic or pessimistic viewpoint?

I would rather just take life as it comes and allow myself to feel what I do without self moralizing about what is the correct way to react.

Modified:
For me optimism has nothing to do with denial which is problem all by itself.  There is always a bright side to every dark side....

May I ask what was the bright side of my mom developing lung cancer and withering away in pain?     

Please do tell me how I was to be optimistic during that time and the time since her passing in relation to that situation?   

Or just perhaps  you can understand through that example that it is not a matter of simply being optimistic or pessimistic in life so much as dealing with the practical reality that sometimes shit just fucking sucks and the best way to deal with it is to deal with it on its terms and not ones that are either dressed up or dressed down to fit some fortune cookie sentiment or viewpoint?
« Last Edit: October 03, 2007, 11:39:49 AM by Iggy »

Offline beefbud

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #30 on: October 03, 2007, 11:59:13 AM »
honestly, I don't stay optimistic all the time.  Some days its a fuckin bitch.  I feel its spin the wheel of emotion and lets see what we get today, will it be anger, despair, hopelessness or the ever popular I DON'T give a fuck anymore...but you know what its been almost 6 months for me and the good far outweigh the bad days. 
I think ultimately its a lot to try and grasp all at once...give yourself the time to feel what you need to feel.
"first impressions are cheap auditions"

Offline NycJoe

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #31 on: October 03, 2007, 01:00:56 PM »
I think I understand what Craig meant about a bright side to every dark side.  As I have watched my almost 99yo grandmother slowly wither away which is extremely difficult, we have grown much closer than we have in years.  It gave us the opportunity to really appreciate each other and share things we might not have had she suddenly just passed away.  I have spent much more time with her and through her past experiences have learned why she became the person she is/was.  It almost feels selfish to be devestated that she will pass away soon enough being that she will be 99 in a few weeks, but as my Dr said it dosent matter if the person is 39 or 99 the pain is the same. 

I dont think what anyone is saying is to be optimistic 24/7.  Their are good days and bad days.   I think what people, well, I am trying to say that overall I try to keep an optimistic view of life.  It's a choice I have made.  It's not naive.  I can become upset, depressed, slightly jaded on occasion.  But overall I try to remain upbeat and positive because I don't like the alternative.  Not to mention I believe your mental attitude such as depression and negativity can affect your health in bad ways.  That being said..yes..some days are a bitch...Joe

Offline David_CA

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #32 on: October 03, 2007, 01:31:44 PM »
Iggy,

I don't believe there's any way you could find a bright side about your mom's cancer.  I think we need to find a bright side to our own problems.  Perhaps your mom found something in her cancer; perhaps not.  I obviously can't say.  So many here have found benefits in their life attributable to an HIV diagnosis, not necessarily due to the HIV itself. 

I always said (when I was a lot younger) that I didn't think I could deal with being gay.  Being attracted to guys was ok, but to be gay, with a partner, boyfriend, husband, whatever wasn't something I thought I could deal with.  I always said that I didn't think I could handle having an HIV+ partner or husband.  I also told myself that being diagnosed with HIV would be something I just couldn't live with.  Guess what... I'm a big old queer, with an HIV+ husband, and I'm HIV+ and have AIDS.  Believe me, I quit finding things that I 'didn't think I could deal with'!   ;)  I know that I can handle the crap that comes up in my life; I don't really have any option but to deal with it.  I know it can be a bitch, but telling myself this (being optimistic) is the only way that I can handle it.  If I look at it from afar, it can be overwhelming, so I don't.  I try to deal with each issue as an obstacle, not as an interruption to happiness.

The being reported to the Dept. of Health as a syphilis contact (that I mentioned in another post) and ending up in the hospital with PCP are other good examples.  Without the syphilis ordeal, I wouldn't have gotten tested for HIV.  Who know when I would have disclosed my HIV status to my family if I hadn't gotten sick last winter.  It's not good that these things happened, but there  was some good to come from them.  It's a whole lot easier and more beneficial to see 'em that way than to be miserable, negative, and a 'victim' of them. 

I think that's possibly what Craig (and others) mean.  If not, it's my perspective on how, and just as importantly, why I stay optimistic.  I'm not so out of touch that I never have negative, pessimistic moments.  But, overall, I am optimistic.  Without optimism and the desire for 'good times', why even deal with it all (i.e. life in general)?

David
Black Friday 03-03-2006
03-23-06 CD4 359 @27.4% VL 75,938
06-01-06 CD4 462 @24.3% VL > 100,000
08-15-06 CD4 388 @22.8% VL >  "
10-21-06 CD4 285 @21.9% VL >  "
  Atripla started 12-01-2006
01-08-07 CD4 429 @26.8% VL 1872!
05-08-07 CD4 478 @28.1% VL 740
08-03-07 CD4 509 @31.8% VL 370
11-06-07 CD4 570 @30.0% VL 140
02-21-08 CD4 648 @32.4% VL 600
05-19-08 CD4 695 @33.1% VL < 48 undetectable!
08-21-08 CD4 725 @34.5%
11-11-08 CD4 672 @39.5%
02-11-09 CD4 773 @36.8%
05-11-09 CD4 615 @36.2%
08-19-09 CD4 770 @38.5%
11-19-09 CD4 944 @33.7%
02-17-10 CD4 678 @39.9%  
06-03-10 CD4 768 @34.9%
09-21-10 CD4 685 @40.3%
01-10-11 CD4 908 @36.3%
05-23-11 CD4 846 @36.8% VL 80
02-13-12 CD4 911 @41.4% VL<20
You must be the change you want to see in the world.  Mahatma Gandhi

Offline Iggy

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #33 on: October 03, 2007, 01:48:27 PM »
Joe and David -

I get what you are saying, and if you actually read my initial post as well as closely look at my follow-up you will note pretty much stated a similar idea.  My point is that there is no reason to always be optimistic nor pessimistic , nor to feel confined but such labels - only to feel what you do without censor.

What I question is people or viewpoints that try to configure people or situations into a Camp A or Camp B. That is being simplistic and that is denying reality.

As far as there always being a bright side - I think that's a load of crap.

In my case I was already close with my mom and I can assure you that she did not get anything out of the cancer outside of a painful and long dying process. 

There were no heart to hearts that we hadn't already had before cancer, and there was no Lifetime movie moment of connecting or learning something we hadn't already had or known.   

So I can say with surety that there was absolutely NO Bright side whatsoever to the scenario.  To try and make that heartbreaking and absolutely painful experience somehow fit into a viewpoint of a bright side or needing to be optimistic is a slap in the face to the actual experience that she and my family went through.

To be clear (since I think my point is misunderstood)- this is not an argument to be pessimistic, which many erroneously assumes someone is automatically if they are not optimistic, but a reminder that we are all much more capable of dealing with life and its experiences without it coming down to how you view a glass at 50% capacity.


Offline jkinatl2

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #34 on: October 03, 2007, 01:53:32 PM »
What he said.


Joe and David -

I get what you are saying, and if you actually read my initial post as well as closely look at my follow-up you will note pretty much stated a similar idea.  My point is that there is no reason to always be optimistic nor pessimistic , nor to feel confined but such labels - only to feel what you do without censor.

What I question is people or viewpoints that try to configure people or situations into a Camp A or Camp B. That is being simplistic and that is denying reality.

As far as there always being a bright side - I think that's a load of crap.

In my case I was already close with my mom and I can assure you that she did not get anything out of the cancer outside of a painful and long dying process. 

There were no heart to hearts that we hadn't already had before cancer, and there was no Lifetime movie moment of connecting or learning something we hadn't already had or known.  

So I can say with surety that there was absolutely NO Bright side whatsoever to the scenario.  To try and make that heartbreaking and absolutely painful experience somehow fit into a viewpoint of a bright side or needing to be optimistic is a slap in the face to the actual experience that she and my family went through.

To be clear (since I think my point is misunderstood)- this is not an argument to be pessimistic, which many erroneously assumes someone is automatically if they are not optimistic, but a reminder that we are all much more capable of dealing with life and its experiences without it coming down to how you view a glass at 50% capacity.


"Many people, especially in the gay community, turn to oral sex as a safer alternative in the age of AIDS. And with HIV rates rising, people need to remember that oral sex is safer sex. It's a reasonable alternative."

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline Cliff

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #35 on: October 03, 2007, 02:08:55 PM »
I was diagnosed 2 months ago and cd4 count was low-300 and I had to go on meds.  I have always been safe with sex, and don't even know how I became positive.  I thought I would not have to take meds for a while.  I feel so cheated that other people have not had to take them for so long.  Take the meds every day acknowledges my health status.  Most days I am OK with it, today I just feel so defeated and depressed
How do you stay optimistic?  By choosing to focus on the things that you can control and the good in your life.  The fact that you have access to meds, now know your status and have a good tcell count (300 isn't low), are all things that are good in your life, because honestly most people around the world with HIV don't have that. 

You weren't cheated because you have to go on meds so quickly, you were probably positive for a while before finding out (or your new infection, in which case I would question why your doctor isn't taking a wait-and-see approach to starting meds).

I choose to remain positive and an optimist.  For me, it's the only option.  Otherwise I'll end up wallowing in self-pity, depression and fear.  I take control over what I can and let go of those things that I can no longer control.  But it does take time.  When I was first diagnosed, that was the biggest fear for me, no longer having control over my life (the virus/meds do).  But I now realise that I do have control over my life.  It is a choice. How you deal with this disease, that is.  Be flexible in how you deal with life/hiv and you'll find it to be more manageable than you previously thought. 

Good luck to you.

Cliff

Offline David_CA

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #36 on: October 03, 2007, 02:33:10 PM »
Iggy,

I think why some of us may have misinterpreted what you said is there are people that are almost completely pessimistic.  Of course we all have bad days, but some people that I know have 'bad lives'.  There is not one thing that happens to them that is their fault, could have been avoided, will be avoided in the future, serves as a learning experience, has a positive outcome, whatever.  In their minds they are innocent victims to every bad or unfortunate incident in their lives.  If these people are pessimists, then the opposite behavior, would lead others to be considered optimists. 

Instead of looking at that glass at 50% capacity as half full or half empty, I just try to find the benefit of there being something in the glass (if the goal is to have a glass at 100% capacity).  Look at it this way: I have had some positives in my life since being diagnosed HIV+.  I try to keep things in my life in perspective a bit better.  I've gone to two AMG's and met some incredible people and got to visit two fun cities I'd not been to before.  I've met some wonderful people online on this forum.  I've learned how rich my life really is.  I've seen the support that my family and friends are capable of.  Of course, if I could give back all those good things to go back to the point where I was HIV-, I would.  Since I can't, what are the options?  I'm not so clueless as to not acknowledge the damage that this virus is doing to me and to what an OI can do.  I'm reminded of it every time I walk to my car from work and am out of breath.  I realize that others don't have work, can't walk, and don't have a car.  I'm reminded of it every time I take my meds... even though I can tolerate the Sustiva in Atripla, that doesn't mean that it doesn't bother me.  There are people that don't have access to meds.  By keeping it in perspective and seeing some good in it, instead of trying to see it (HIV) as positive itself is how I stay optimistic (how I interpret the title and intent of the original post, in fact).

(Iggy... as an aside, only the first paragraph of my previous reply was directed towards you.  The rest was a response to the original post)

David
 
« Last Edit: October 03, 2007, 02:35:12 PM by David_NC »
Black Friday 03-03-2006
03-23-06 CD4 359 @27.4% VL 75,938
06-01-06 CD4 462 @24.3% VL > 100,000
08-15-06 CD4 388 @22.8% VL >  "
10-21-06 CD4 285 @21.9% VL >  "
  Atripla started 12-01-2006
01-08-07 CD4 429 @26.8% VL 1872!
05-08-07 CD4 478 @28.1% VL 740
08-03-07 CD4 509 @31.8% VL 370
11-06-07 CD4 570 @30.0% VL 140
02-21-08 CD4 648 @32.4% VL 600
05-19-08 CD4 695 @33.1% VL < 48 undetectable!
08-21-08 CD4 725 @34.5%
11-11-08 CD4 672 @39.5%
02-11-09 CD4 773 @36.8%
05-11-09 CD4 615 @36.2%
08-19-09 CD4 770 @38.5%
11-19-09 CD4 944 @33.7%
02-17-10 CD4 678 @39.9%  
06-03-10 CD4 768 @34.9%
09-21-10 CD4 685 @40.3%
01-10-11 CD4 908 @36.3%
05-23-11 CD4 846 @36.8% VL 80
02-13-12 CD4 911 @41.4% VL<20
You must be the change you want to see in the world.  Mahatma Gandhi

Offline Iggy

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #37 on: October 03, 2007, 03:00:31 PM »
Iggy,

I think why some of us may have misinterpreted what you said is there are people that are almost completely pessimistic.  Of course we all have bad days, but some people that I know have 'bad lives'.  There is not one thing that happens to them that is their fault, could have been avoided, will be avoided in the future, serves as a learning experience, has a positive outcome, whatever.  In their minds they are innocent victims to every bad or unfortunate incident in their lives.

Agreed.  100%.

What I think is ironic though is that those same people who are worried about the exclusively pessimistic can't understand the equal danger in believing that everything requires an exclusive optimistic point of view...or that there is always a bright side or something good to come out of everything. 

Both sides (to be only pessimistic and to be only optimistic) are unrealistic blinder views that are not healthy. Just as there are the pessimists who you note play the victim, there are the optimists who deny reality.

I just don't think anyone needs to define themselves or their viewpoints in such limiting and superficial ways - we are all more advanced and complex than that.  Modified: Frankly, I'm surprised that anyone would actually need to debate that idea.
« Last Edit: October 03, 2007, 03:25:15 PM by Iggy »

Offline leatherman

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #38 on: October 03, 2007, 03:49:29 PM »
this debate happens throughout a bunch of threads here (many times between the views of those newly poz and LTS). I tend to not wade in as I think the debate is biased. I think that there are three ways to view life/future: optimistically, pessimistically, AND realistically. Too often my realisitc view is misinterperted as pessimistic by the optimistics with their closed minds/ears.

My glass is neither half full NOR half empty.
I'm just glad to have a glass.  ;D
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


chart from 1992-2013; updated 2/09/13  Reyataz/Norvir/Truvada

Offline pozattitude

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #39 on: October 03, 2007, 04:18:13 PM »
Cityboy,

HIV is a bitch...it never affects two people the same way.
I know the exact time period when I became infected and my CD4 was in the very low 200's and the VL in the 100 millions in less than a 2 year period; however, I don't remember ever being sick during that time.
I started meds pretty much right away and I am lucky and happy to say that , given the many possibilities, I have maintained a good CD4 count and undetectable VL the entire time I've been on meds.
I wouldn't use the word optimistic to describe how I deal with HIV.  Realist would be more like it.  I know I have a disease that has no cure, I know what it can do, but I do keep a positive attitude towards life...I will never let HIV keep me down (mentally) and I do have hope.  But the truth is that I take one day at the time...most of the time it is good, somedays are not so good and it is during those days that I have to remind myself that I am alive and healthy and lucky to have access to the treatment I need.  I also have to remind myself of the good days and tell myself they will be back when I don't feel so good.
Overall it is life...regardless of HIV or not, we all have good days and bad ones...it is a cycle.
I have also found that for myself, not feeling like a victim of HIV is very important to stay healthy.  For me to let myself feel like a victim would be like giving up and saying "I give my life to HIV, I'm dead."  I chose to fight this bitch and in a way it keeps me going.
The bottom line is  I AM ALIVE and as long as I am alive I'll keep living...HIV or not.

Rich
POSITIVE PEDALERS... We are a group of people living with HIV/AIDS, eliminating stigma through our positive public example.

Offline mrtallguy

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #40 on: October 03, 2007, 07:24:25 PM »
The ability to debate viewpoints and discuss these types of "HOT" issues is fantastic.  Of course this process will bring up circumstances and issues (such as Iggy and his mother who went through a horrible experience with cancer) that help mold our views and thinking about the tough moments in life.  We are all here because we live through some tough moments every day!  This process reminds me of the rock tumbler I had as a kid.  The rock I would put in the tumbler would look nice but after a couple weeks of being banged around with other rocks and some gritty stuff....it would come out looking really great!  Hopefully that happens to us here in the forums as well.

What I share is not absolutely "right", but of course it is not "wrong" either! However, reading about everyone's viewpoints and experiences hopefully will refine my thinking and make me a bright "rock" on the beach of life.

When someone experiences a horrible situation there are times where the "good" exists outside the circumstances.  Iggy, in your situation you (and Mom) went through hell at the end of her life. That is true.  Hopefully you will look at the pre-cancer experiences you had with her and focus on that good.  In that case the bad times created a point of relfection whereby you can be thankful for the good, healthy, moments. 

To the best of my ablity I will look for the good in every situation...and speaking of good...this forum is full of amazing people!  Thank You!

Be Well...

Craig
I AM DETERMINED TO SEE THINGS DIFFERENTLY!
--ACIM

Offline Iggy

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #41 on: October 03, 2007, 07:40:07 PM »
I think that there are three ways to view life/future: optimistically, pessimistically, AND realistically. Too often my realisitc view is misinterperted as pessimistic by the optimistics with their closed minds/ears.


I think this is the best succinct take on the issue.
Iggy, in your situation you (and Mom) went through hell at the end of her life. That is true.  Hopefully you will look at the pre-cancer experiences you had with her and focus on that good.  In that case the bad times created a point of relfection whereby you can be thankful for the good, healthy, moments. 

Craig,

That was quite unbelievable of you...quite.  I've written three different responses and deleted them due to my anger at your audacity.  Let's just say you just proved in my mind the point I made earlier.

Offline David_CA

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #42 on: October 03, 2007, 08:32:44 PM »
Iggy,

I met Craig at the AMG.  He's a nice guy, and I can assure you he didn't mean any harm, disrespect, or anything malicious towards you.  Neither have I.  What he said is the point I was trying to make.  It takes time to reach a point where the grief doesn't overshadow all else... if one ever gets to that point  I also mean nothing negative towards you with this:  you brought up a subject that is very sensitive for you, and it got discussed.  Perhaps we should focus on how to stay optimistic, as this is what the original poster intended. 

David
Black Friday 03-03-2006
03-23-06 CD4 359 @27.4% VL 75,938
06-01-06 CD4 462 @24.3% VL > 100,000
08-15-06 CD4 388 @22.8% VL >  "
10-21-06 CD4 285 @21.9% VL >  "
  Atripla started 12-01-2006
01-08-07 CD4 429 @26.8% VL 1872!
05-08-07 CD4 478 @28.1% VL 740
08-03-07 CD4 509 @31.8% VL 370
11-06-07 CD4 570 @30.0% VL 140
02-21-08 CD4 648 @32.4% VL 600
05-19-08 CD4 695 @33.1% VL < 48 undetectable!
08-21-08 CD4 725 @34.5%
11-11-08 CD4 672 @39.5%
02-11-09 CD4 773 @36.8%
05-11-09 CD4 615 @36.2%
08-19-09 CD4 770 @38.5%
11-19-09 CD4 944 @33.7%
02-17-10 CD4 678 @39.9%  
06-03-10 CD4 768 @34.9%
09-21-10 CD4 685 @40.3%
01-10-11 CD4 908 @36.3%
05-23-11 CD4 846 @36.8% VL 80
02-13-12 CD4 911 @41.4% VL<20
You must be the change you want to see in the world.  Mahatma Gandhi

Offline AustinWesley

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Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #43 on: October 03, 2007, 11:55:07 PM »
Hey Cityboy,

I stay optimistic because I have to.   Sure, there are times when I don't want to put out the energy and feel like wallowing in self pity.  I'd be lying if I said otherwise.   This may sound corny, but I just tell myself don't even let yourself go there.   I've also made it a point to seek out knowledgeable people who are thriving and living life while avoiding the self destructive people who choose to live in misery and despair.

However, I think it's important to gain perspective.  HIV is not the worst illness or disease in the world.   As of now, there's no cure, but at least there's research going on and the meds are vastly improved compared to years ago.   The good news is they work.   Your CD4's will start rebounding once the viral load is knocked down and in check.   Like others said, everyone reacts differently and at a different pace.

I would also agree with the individual who brought up the point about anxiety.   Since I've been on meds I don't have that constant stress wondering when will I have to start meds?   More recent studies seem to suggest starting sooner than later.  Logically, I think this has merit.   Rather than waiting till your immune system is completely shot it may be better to start while you are still healthy.   

Honestly, I am now looking forward to future labs instead of dreading them and worrying constantly.   

I feel like I've reached a point where it's just a fact of life and I'm not preoccupied with HIV 24/7 anymore.   I've got some great HIV+ friends and I've pretty much dealt with everything I needed to and moved on with my life.   I tend to agree with the other individual who mentioned throwing yourself head first into it.  I'm paraphrasing, but I think there's something to be said for that.   It sort of helps you get it out of your system, at least it did for me.   I don't feel like I have anything to hide and my friends and family are now all at peace with it and life has moved on.   

Well, as is my style I've rambled on.   Hang in there, things will improve!

Wesley
Diag. 3/06  Infected aprx. 2 mo. Prior
Date        CD4   %      VL
4/6/06     627    32    36,500     NO MEDS YET!
6/7/06     409    27    36,100
8/23/06   408    25     22,300
1/2/07     354    23     28,700
2/9/07     139    30     23,000  Hep A Vaccine same day???
2/21/07   274    26     18,500 
3/3/07    RX of Truvada/Sustiva Started.
4/5/07    321     27      Undectable 1st mo.  
5/16/07  383     28    Undectable 2nd mo.
8/10/07  422     32   UD <48 on new scale!

Offline Cliff

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,645
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #44 on: October 04, 2007, 06:28:30 AM »
Iggy,

I concur with David.  Craig is a extremely nice and pragmatic guy.  I don't think he was being disrespectful to you.  I think this highlights an issue with using personal stories/situations to make a point.  Things become a minefield as it's more personal.

Cliff

Offline sdcabincrew74

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    • My Manhunt account
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #45 on: October 04, 2007, 02:03:18 PM »
Zoloft baby!  Mix in some alcohol, a good sex life and a job you love and amazingly it is pretty easy to stay optomistic.
The difference between an overnight and a layover is luck!

Offline David_CA

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  • Posts: 3,246
  • Joined: March 2006
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #46 on: October 04, 2007, 06:19:13 PM »
Zoloft baby!  Mix in some alcohol, a good sex life and a job you love and amazingly it is pretty easy to stay optomistic.

I'll go for that, except I'll substitute some Adderall for the Zoloft...
Black Friday 03-03-2006
03-23-06 CD4 359 @27.4% VL 75,938
06-01-06 CD4 462 @24.3% VL > 100,000
08-15-06 CD4 388 @22.8% VL >  "
10-21-06 CD4 285 @21.9% VL >  "
  Atripla started 12-01-2006
01-08-07 CD4 429 @26.8% VL 1872!
05-08-07 CD4 478 @28.1% VL 740
08-03-07 CD4 509 @31.8% VL 370
11-06-07 CD4 570 @30.0% VL 140
02-21-08 CD4 648 @32.4% VL 600
05-19-08 CD4 695 @33.1% VL < 48 undetectable!
08-21-08 CD4 725 @34.5%
11-11-08 CD4 672 @39.5%
02-11-09 CD4 773 @36.8%
05-11-09 CD4 615 @36.2%
08-19-09 CD4 770 @38.5%
11-19-09 CD4 944 @33.7%
02-17-10 CD4 678 @39.9%  
06-03-10 CD4 768 @34.9%
09-21-10 CD4 685 @40.3%
01-10-11 CD4 908 @36.3%
05-23-11 CD4 846 @36.8% VL 80
02-13-12 CD4 911 @41.4% VL<20
You must be the change you want to see in the world.  Mahatma Gandhi

Offline mrtallguy

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  • Posts: 199
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #47 on: October 04, 2007, 07:11:04 PM »
Hey Iggy,
Please accept my apologies...it was not my intent to offend you or your situation.  I wish for you peaceful moments, now and always.

David and Cliff,
Thank you for your support!

Wesley,
Thank you for bringing this thread back on track...your contribution was a great summary of many thoughts shared here.

Be Well....

Craig
I AM DETERMINED TO SEE THINGS DIFFERENTLY!
--ACIM

Offline StrongGuy

  • Member
  • Posts: 492
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #48 on: October 04, 2007, 08:04:04 PM »
If someone wants to be a pessimist makes no difference to me - as long as they are not prosteletyzing pessimism towards me or my friends as if we should share their viewpoint because they are the realistic ones. As if they walked a day in my shoes.  Cold day in hell before that happens :).

I say just let everyone be and live YOUR life.

Mike
(who enjoyed many of the insightful responses in this thread)
"Get your medical advice from Doctors or medical professionals who you trust and know your history."

"Beware of the fortune teller doom and gloomers who seek to bring you down and are only looking for company, purpose and validation - not your best physical/mental interests."

"You know you all are saying that this is incurable. When the real thing you should be saying is it's not curable at the present time' because as we know, the great strides we've made in medicine." - Elizabeth Edwards

Offline Iggy

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  • Posts: 2,435
Re: How do you stay optimistic
« Reply #49 on: October 04, 2007, 08:45:07 PM »
Craig (and in fact, Cityboy)

Though I took some offense at your insistence in trying to offer me a bright side to what happened with my mother - I carry no anger beyond my initial reaction.  I actually think it is funny (in hindsight) that you misunderstand so greatly what I have been saying.

To quote myself in a pm that I wrote to another:

Of course there is good with my mom's life and my memories of her.  That is never denied and not in debate...in fact I stated that myself.  But, what I need you to appreciate is that such things is not related to her death. Her death is a horrific painful thing - period.  Any sense of trying to correlate the good to that experience is ignoring what that experience was....and in my opinion minimizing the good that existed independent of her death.

At issue is that I think you may not be able to see that I can see the bad and good in life for what they are without needing a connection between the two in order to deal with them.  Sometimes life is beyond great and I am thankful. Sometimes life is full of misery and I am sad, But I don't require one in order to understand the other.

To better explain, think of this all in reverse for one second to see my point:

Instead of looking at it as for every dark cloud there is a silver lining, what would you think if I tried to make an argument that for every happiness or good thing that happens in your life there is a related punishment or misery?

You would probably think I was being unrealistically pessimistic, wouldn't you?  Perhaps not grounded in reality? Now ask yourself why is OK to have an issue with thinking that every happiness must be punished and not that every bad thing has a bright side?

I don't and never have denied the power of optimism nor do I have any issues with seeking a positive outcome for any situation, but it defies logic and it is offensive to me personally for someone to try to correct me on my personal experience as not being what they are which in the case of my mother's death being solely negative.

Do you all somehow think that because I view her death as solely a negative thing that I had a lesser experience with her than if I saw a bright side?  Do you think that because I don't see her death in any good terms that my memories of her are dark as well?

If you think yes to any of those - you are wrong.

The point isn't about your personal beliefs or mine, it is respecting the diversity and individualistic nature of each of us and what we each experience.  This is the point that I think is honestly lost by a few of you.

To bring this all back to Cityboy:
  First I think this discussion is very much about him  and anyone dealing with HIV in their future - particularly the newbies as who are we to tell him that he must have a positive outlook if his Psyche is needing him to be scared and dark at the moment in order to deal with all this?

I don't see that as helping him come to terms at all with the reality and in fact I see it as detrimental to his health.

Read my original post and you will see that I tell him that there is a lot to be positive about, but I also give him the freedom to feel like shit if that is what he needs at the moment....if that is what helps him own his virus and overcome it (at least mentally.) then so be it.

Someone stated that the goal in life is to be happy, and I respectfully disagree.    I think that the goal in this life is to live it fully...and that includes the full breadth of the experiences in it - whether they are happy or sad. Intrinsic in that is to respect the moments and live them as they are without searching for them to be something else.

This is what gives us the strength to face darkness  and our questions about the future - acknowledging it for what it is and facing it head on.  It is also what makes the good that much stronger - as it is free to stand on its own as well.

We are creatures made up of our very experiences and to try to dictate how we view them vs. allowing us to actually feel them naturally is the issue.  What good is always looking for a bright side if your very being needs to feel the darkness of the situation?

I think the key is not to look for anything in an experience but to experience it - the outcome and direction will come much quicker and clearer when it is allowed to flow without artificial guidance.

Somehow so many people have lost the ability to feel what they do without guilt.  We fret that if we feel dark we are bad or not being positive or being pessimistic, when in truth sometimes optimism is solely an escape for people who can't deal with the reality of their feelings.  Feelings I might add that only fester if not dealt with on the basis of what they are without trying to assign them a better or worse outcome.

So I repeat myself from my original post - I don't trust those who need to always be optimistic vs. just allowing themselves to feel what they want to feel about their future be it scary or hopeful.

 


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