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Author Topic: Not happy but very relieved  (Read 3571 times)

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Offline a2z

  • Member
  • Posts: 186
Not happy but very relieved
« on: October 24, 2007, 05:14:31 AM »
I can finally post my story, because I finally have something to tell.

Some time ago I took a 20-minute test for HIV and was quite surprised when it came back reactive.  I figured it was a good time to take the test because I had several months of celibacy.  I went to take the confirmation test with the counselor who gave me the 20 minute test and he could not draw blood from my vein.  I decided we should try it another day but a big bruise formed where he tried to draw blood and I freaked.

From there I found every excuse to not have the confirmation test.  Im guessing I do not have to explain the reasoning.  There is just something about putting it on record that is scary.  Your life as you know it is now different.  You are often judged.

I've been reading the board over the summer and after seeing all the hope and long term survivors here and the research, I decided I had to work up the courage to tell my doctor to test me.  It took another month after that realization and last week I just blurted it out.  The test came back today and its now official.

Today is the first full day of accepting this reality.  And its okay.  I was lucky, the ID doctor has an opening for about two weeks from now. 

I may be lucky in several ways.  Right now I have good health insurance lets hope I keep that and my job, while I may or may not end up on Atripla at least it is out there as I am a lousy pill taker.  Yes I have been practicing with the jellybeans and overall have been doing much better with it than I thought.  I have only a few minor symptoms but I think the skin is the one major item.  Im lucky I have a board like this to read and refer to.

I was wondering if my new primary care doctor was either homophobic and/or not up to the task.  I had no reason other than paranoia and my previous doctor to worry about either issue.  It turns out my doctor had a brother who died of AIDS, and me being gay posed no problem for him or his nurse.  He said I wasnt also the first HIV+ patient he's dealt with and he offered nothing but hope while acknowledging its a tough road.

Its sorta odd: when I went in for the test today I had been worried about the nurse as she is a pretty sensitive soul and when she called me last week to come in I could tell she had been crying.  Today she and I talked before the doctor and she admitted she was surprised but she told me she was okay with it.  I have no idea why I was worried about her.  It was misfocused energy.

So I have an adventure before me.  I haven't cried yet, and I don't quite know why or if there is anything to make of that.  I realize this is no picnic, and I am sure there will be plenty of days where I will have a cranky attitude, but for now I plan to just look at it this way.  It is what it is.

And I am going to live to be a crabby old man.  Or I wont and it will hopefully end quickly.  But not until I get outside the US for a vacation.

I realize there is more everyone may want to know but give me time.  Im not very trusting at first but I do get there.
Dates are blood draw dates:
09/21/09: CD 898 27.0% VL 120 - back on track, same meds.High level enzymes, but less so
06/15/09: CD4 478 21.8% VL 1150 - high liver enzymes... looks like I may not be resistant
05/22/09: Fixed insurance, resumed medicine
04/17/09: Ran out of medicine, could not resolve insurance problems
04/01/09: CD4 773 28% VL 120 - high liver enzymes
12/01/08: CD4 514 23% VL 630
10/17/08 started Reyataz, Norvir and Truvada. -- possibly minor neuropathy, but otherwise okay.
9/10/08: CD4 345 17%, VL > 78K
8/18/08: CD4 312 18%, VL > 60K (considering meds)
12/19/07: CD4 550 28% VL > 100K (no meds yet)
Diagnosed 10/23/07

Offline komnaes

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,893
Re: Not happy but very relieved
« Reply #1 on: October 24, 2007, 09:31:15 AM »
Guess I will take up the task this time to be the first to welcome you. I am a noobie two, less than 2 months. I can now at least share with you that you'd probably go through a lot of emotions for the next whatever number of weeks of even months to find a "groove".

We're in it for the long haul, and even if not so long, let's make it at least as best a quality one as you can. Looking forward to hearing more from you. And good luck with your first appointment with your ID doctor.

Shaun
Aug 07 Diagnosed
Oct 07 CD4=446(19%) Feb 08 CD4=421(19%)
Jun 08 CD4=325(22%) Jul 08 CD4=301(18%)
Sep 08 CD4=257/VL=75,000 Oct 08 CD4=347(16%)
Dec 08 CD4=270(16%)
Jan 09 CD4=246(13%)/VL=10,000
Feb 09 CD4=233(15%)/VL=13,000
Started meds Sustiva/Epzicom
May 09 CD4=333(24%)/VL=650
Aug 09 CD4=346(24%)/VL=UD
Nov 09 CD4=437(26%)/VL=UD
Feb 10 CD4=471(31%)/VL=UD
June 10 CD4=517 (28%)/VL=UD
Sept 10 CD4=687 (31%)/VL=UD
Jan 11 CD4=557 (30%)/VL=UD
April 11 CD4=569 (32%)/VL=UD
Switched to Epizcom, Reyataz and Norvir
(Interrupted for 2 months with only Epizcom & Reyataz)
July 11 CD=520 (28%)/VL=UD
Oct 11 CD=771 (31%)/VL=UD(<30)
April 12 CD=609 (28%)/VL=UD(<20)
Aug 12 CD=657 (29%)/VL=UD(<20)
Dec 12 CD=532 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
May 13 CD=567 (31%)/VL=UD(<20)
Jan 14 CD=521 (21%)/VL=UD(<50)

Offline megasept

  • Member
  • Posts: 478
  • Steven here...
Re: Not happy but very relieved
« Reply #2 on: October 24, 2007, 04:56:40 PM »
And I am going to live to be a crabby old man.  Or I wont and it will hopefully end quickly.  But not until I get outside the US for a vacation.

I realize there is more everyone may want to know but give me time.  Im not very trusting at first but I do get there.


WELCOME from a relatively crabby-somewhat-older man (50)!

I didn't cry for weeks over my diagnosis, and even then more like spurts, not some kind of catharsis. I am also a skeptical sort (slow to trust). You like to know the truth ("not happy, but relieved"). Save for retirement! Protect yourself from heart disease! 

Though it's great to love your Primary Care Physician and his RN, I get all my medical care through or from my HIV specialist. It works out just fine. Vision and dental are their own worlds. I have been treated exactly 5 years of my last 16+ with HIV. This is intentional and in concert with my specialist's recommendations. When I reach CD4 < 350 AND/OR VL > 100k, I will resume ARV treatment. I pay my own insurance premiums.

Learn about COBRA and how you may stay insured forever (at great cost I am afraid) after you leave this job for the next (or none). It's good to continue with the things you have always wanted to do before your diagnosis. Being a slave to your employer is not necessary. I have embarked on new careers, personal relationships, and other life-altering choices since seroconversion. I am damn lucky to have been blessed with relatively good health (to date); immense gratitude is part of my experience. I think you'll do fine.

 8)  -megasept  PS Shaun's advice is exactly right!

« Last Edit: October 24, 2007, 05:01:01 PM by megasept »

Offline megasept

  • Member
  • Posts: 478
  • Steven here...
repost in error (Luddite c'est moi)
« Reply #3 on: October 24, 2007, 04:57:46 PM »
repost in error...don't read this!

Offline sacinsc

  • Member
  • Posts: 353
Re: Not happy but very relieved
« Reply #4 on: October 24, 2007, 06:00:11 PM »
Welcome from me as well. I got the great news in September and was caught totally off guard as well. Everyone on here has helped me get through the intial phase of depression, anger, depression, fatigue, depression, revenge, and yeah more depression. Now almost 2 months later I still stare into space some, but for the most part my friends tell me I look better now than ever. Odd....

Anyway, I got help here on supplements (I went overboard....but they work "in my head") and right now it looks like i may go on meds, and i am getting into on that now too.

I am not going to be the one that says hey nothing changes your still the same person, cause really your not. I had to make lots of adjustments right away (i felt i did anyway). I had to make decisions about ever having sex again...happily i can said i decided i can...but only through serosorting.

Someone on here told me to write down all the questions I had for my ID doc, because for me my mind reals when i am in there and I forget a lot, ok everything I wanted to ask, and then i call him later.

You will be OK though, I know that :) I made the decision that I am not afraid of death now, but im not going looking for it either :) He seems to have found me and my attitude of not caring about him made him lose interest.... :D

Let us know your blood work when you get :) People on here can advise you better then.

Matt
March 07 - Negative
May 07 - Exposed
June 07 - Seroconversion
September 07 - CD4 402 VL 118000 25%
October 07 -     CD4 294 VL 124000 22%
November 07 - Norvir, Triuvada and Reyataz
December 07 -  CD4 355 VL  550 .... guess the meds are working.
January 08 - CD4 446 VL <48 undetectable!
April 08 - CD4 554 VL <48 undetectable!
July 08 - CD4 666 VL <48 undetectable! Hporay...I have devil CD4's

Offline megasept

  • Member
  • Posts: 478
  • Steven here...
Re: Not happy but very relieved
« Reply #5 on: October 24, 2007, 07:56:26 PM »
I made the decision that I am not afraid of death now, but im not going looking for it either :) He seems to have found me and my attitude of not caring about him made him lose interest.... :D

Matt

Let's bore the Grim Reaper  :o so he leaves us alone!  ;)

 8)  -megasept

Offline sacinsc

  • Member
  • Posts: 353
Re: Not happy but very relieved
« Reply #6 on: October 24, 2007, 10:13:54 PM »
As long as he leaves me alone, you can do whatever you want with him :)
March 07 - Negative
May 07 - Exposed
June 07 - Seroconversion
September 07 - CD4 402 VL 118000 25%
October 07 -     CD4 294 VL 124000 22%
November 07 - Norvir, Triuvada and Reyataz
December 07 -  CD4 355 VL  550 .... guess the meds are working.
January 08 - CD4 446 VL <48 undetectable!
April 08 - CD4 554 VL <48 undetectable!
July 08 - CD4 666 VL <48 undetectable! Hporay...I have devil CD4's

Offline a2z

  • Member
  • Posts: 186
Re: Not happy but very relieved
« Reply #7 on: October 28, 2007, 11:35:31 PM »
Thank you all for your replies.
Dates are blood draw dates:
09/21/09: CD 898 27.0% VL 120 - back on track, same meds.High level enzymes, but less so
06/15/09: CD4 478 21.8% VL 1150 - high liver enzymes... looks like I may not be resistant
05/22/09: Fixed insurance, resumed medicine
04/17/09: Ran out of medicine, could not resolve insurance problems
04/01/09: CD4 773 28% VL 120 - high liver enzymes
12/01/08: CD4 514 23% VL 630
10/17/08 started Reyataz, Norvir and Truvada. -- possibly minor neuropathy, but otherwise okay.
9/10/08: CD4 345 17%, VL > 78K
8/18/08: CD4 312 18%, VL > 60K (considering meds)
12/19/07: CD4 550 28% VL > 100K (no meds yet)
Diagnosed 10/23/07

 


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