Quantcast

Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
Newsletters
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr Instagram
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join
Username:
Password:
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
October 22, 2014, 08:43:51 AM

Login with username, password and session length


Members
Stats
  • Total Posts: 643031
  • Total Topics: 48926
  • Online Today: 196
  • Online Ever: 585
  • (January 07, 2014, 02:31:47 PM)
Users Online

Welcome


Welcome to the POZ/AIDSmeds Community Forums, a round-the-clock discussion area for people with HIV/AIDS, their friends/family/caregivers, and others concerned about HIV/AIDS.  Click on the links below to browse our various forums; scroll down for a glance at the most recent posts; or join in the conversation yourself by registering on the left side of this page.

Privacy Warning:  Please realize that these forums are open to all, and are fully searchable via Google and other search engines. If you are HIV positive and disclose this in our forums, then it is almost the same thing as telling the whole world (or at least the World Wide Web). If this concerns you, then do not use a username or avatar that are self-identifying in any way. We do not allow the deletion of anything you post in these forums, so think before you post.

  • The information shared in these forums, by moderators and members, is designed to complement, not replace, the relationship between an individual and his/her own physician.

  • All members of these forums are, by default, not considered to be licensed medical providers. If otherwise, users must clearly define themselves as such.

  • Forums members must behave at all times with respect and honesty. Posting guidelines, including time-out and banning policies, have been established by the moderators of these forums. Click here for “Am I Infected?” posting guidelines. Click here for posting guidelines pertaining to all other POZ/AIDSmeds community forums.

  • We ask all forums members to provide references for health/medical/scientific information they provide, when it is not a personal experience being discussed. Please provide hyperlinks with full URLs or full citations of published works not available via the Internet. Additionally, all forums members must post information which are true and correct to their knowledge.

  • Product advertisement—including links; banners; editorial content; and clinical trial, study or survey participation—is strictly prohibited by forums members unless permission has been secured from POZ.

To change forums navigation language settings, click here (members only), Register now

Para cambiar sus preferencias de los foros en español, haz clic aquí (sólo miembros), Regístrate ahora

Finished Reading This? You can collapse this or any other box on this page by clicking the symbol in each box.

Author Topic: Mental Attitude Adjustment  (Read 4060 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Mental Attitude Adjustment
« on: January 01, 2009, 06:53:17 PM »
“You need an attitude adjustment. If you don’t, you will be dead within two years which is much sooner than necessary, because depression is a killer of the immune system," my HIV/AIDS doctor told me after being diagnosed only six months in 1989!  Well, that got my attention and I took his advice, started seeing “another” therapist and started on Paxil.  It wasn’t long that I realized that I really did need the help especially since I was in denial about my depression and that I didn't want to die but live instead.

I learned how to be a pretender/actress most of my life.  I wore a fake smile most of my life.  I was taught at an early age (due to my religious upbringing) to not express my feelings and to hold them which of course only got me in trouble many times because bottled up feelings just waiting to come out is NOT good at all.  In looking back over my life, I do not know how I am still here today other than by the Grace of God but I am so grateful that my Higher Power had other plans for me in spite of me writing Him an angry five page letter in 1980 telling Him that I thought I could run my life a lot better than He was. 

I am the oldest of seven kids.  I was raised by my parents, grandparents and aunt since my dad was a Pentecostal evangelist and my mom and dad were gone a lot when I was young.  My life was pretty good as far as I can remember until I turned 15. 

Since that age, all kinds of tragedies, losses and traumas have happened in my life.  Here is a brief listing:

~In 1964, at the age of 15, my great aunt committed suicide by drowning.  Two weeks later,  my two oldest brothers drowned in a freak accident.
~In 1965, my grandfather (my dad’s dad) died on the way home from visiting us.
~In 1966, my dear aunt (like a mother to me) passed away.
~In 1967, my grandmother (mom’s mother) passed away due to cancer.
~The next ten years were uneventful as far as losses were concerned.
~In 1977, we were involved in a terrible car accident after being struck by a drunk driver. My 9-yr-old son was killed, my 8-yr-old was in a coma for 10 days with no hope to ever walk again or have a right mind when he awoke, my 7-yr-old son almost died but made it after having part of his liver removed, punctured lungs, and many internal injuries, my husband had many broken bones and I had a head injury and was in ICU and didn’t get to attend my son’s funeral. For the next three years, my two sons and I were in and out of the hospital from our injuries.  I went into deep denial and became a zombie most of the time on anti-depressants.
~In 1979, my dad passed away.
~In 1982, a third brother drowned in another freak accident and my grandmother (dad’s mom) passed away the same night (thus another double funeral).
~In 1987, our carpet business went bankrupt, my 21 yrs of marriage ended in divorce and I was date raped shortly after the divorce was final.
~In 1988, my oldest son was picked up for possession of cocaine and was sent to the state pen and my youngest son got a girl pregnant and they got married.  Due to all of the trauma going on in my life at the time I was fired from my job because of all of the errors I was making on the job.
~Later in 1988, the stress of everything started to be just too much and I asked for help from the employee assistance department at my new job (thank God – they got me the help I needed) and I spent my first 30 days in a mental institution which turned out to be the beginning of my life really turning around for the better.  I honestly believe all of the soul-searching and self work I did prepared me for what was to happen next.
~December 1989, I got tested for HIV and discovered that I was infected.
~In 1992, I got married to someone that was HIV negative only to have him leave me out of fear once he was able to admit that he thought he could handle me being HIV+ but realized he couldn’t. We tried couple counseling twice to no avail.
~In 1994, we divorced.
~In 1995, I was once again making too many mistakes and I lost my job due to being so depressed.  It was at this point in my life that I became suicidal again and reached out for help.  This second time in treatment helped me to truly deal with being HIV+, all the losses in my life and finally forgiving the drunk driver that killed my son in 1977.  I didn’t realize I was holding in so much anger against God, the driver, and even my church until that hospitalization.
~In 1995, I started an AIDS Drop-in-Center for PWAs which didn’t make it due to proper funding.  I moved home to Louisiana to die since my labs started dropping very quickly.

It was at this time that I started on the new protease inhibitors and soon discovered that I needed to get another mental attitude adjustment – I had to learn how to live all over again.  Now that was 13 years ago and since then I have been living life with a passion. 

Since I am a chronic depressant, I know I must take my antidepressant as prescribed just like my HIV meds or I could very easily wind up back in a mental institution. I am still on my Paxil – take that back, just got changed to Cymbalta to help with my fibromyalgia – and doing ok mentally and physically.  I have gone back to college, graduated with a BS in Healthcare Administration, working part-time and even have a new love in my life. 

I said all this to say that I am so grateful that my God had other plans for me and that I did NOT take my life because life really is worth living in spite of not believing so at times.  It has taken a lot of work, conferences, workshops, and soul searching but I want you all to know that this disease may some day take my body but I will NOT ever let it take my spirit again!
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,776
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #1 on: January 01, 2009, 08:00:31 PM »
It has taken a lot of work, conferences, workshops, and soul searching but I want you all to know that this disease may some day take my body but I will NOT ever let it take my spirit again!

Beautifully said and it applies to your HIV as well.

Offline kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #2 on: January 01, 2009, 08:25:57 PM »
Thanks so much Killfoile.  That it does for sure.  Thanks again.
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

Offline OneTampa

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,273
  • "Butterflies are free."
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #3 on: January 01, 2009, 08:27:45 PM »
So inspiring.  Congrats to you as you continue on your life journey.

Thank you so much for posting.

Take care.
"He is my oldest child. The shy and retiring one over there with the Haitian headdress serving pescaíto frito."

Offline kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #4 on: January 01, 2009, 11:31:10 PM »
Thanks so much OneTampa for the good wishes for my journey.  It has been a long rough one but through it all I am counting my blessings.  Thanks again.
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

Offline Moffie65

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,755
  • Living POZ since 1983
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #5 on: January 02, 2009, 09:25:10 AM »
Wow, Jewel!

Talk about parallel universes.  My daddy was also a preacher and a missionary, and so many things in my life reflect yours, except the details.  Emotionally we have pretty much faced similar challenges, and yet both of us are still here, still having a wonderful life, and pretty much not phased by all the crap we have been dealt throughout life. 

I say good for you, for sticking it out and finally making it to a place of peace and tranquility in life.  I guess the 60's aren't too awful, simply because the alternative is pretty much bleak.  I always say, live each day as if it is your last, and when we witness so much death in our lives, it certainly isn't difficult to make that goal a reality.

I love your signature block and pretty much live that way now. 

Thanks for taking the time to place your life experiences here, they are always a guide for someone, so never think that it is wasted space.
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 kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #6 on: January 02, 2009, 10:59:51 AM »
Thanks so much Moffie for replying.  Wow - it is great to meat another PK in this forum.  Just being a PK in itself presents a lot of issues that I didn't really share.  But glad to know you truly understand and in spite of similar challenges that We both have survived.  I have read some of your postings and have been inspired by them as well.  So Thank You for being YOU.

I am on disability for my mental problems and not for HIV/AIDS even though I have been infected since 1989.  At times I am more embarrassed for having those mental problems than I am for being HIV+.  For me it is much easier to say I am HIV+ than I say I have mental problems.  But as long as I take my meds (on both) accounts, all is well with the world.

Thanks for the words of encouragement.  My signature block is my personal mission statement.  Heard that phrase at a conference I went to in 94 and it has become very special.  Thanks for acknowledging it.

God Bless you Moffie and everyone else that reads these boards that suffers from mental and HIV/AIDS issues.
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

Offline BT65

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 9,974
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #7 on: January 03, 2009, 09:49:18 AM »
Jewel, thanks for sharing your story; it was inspiring. 

I've survived a ton also, and can relate to the mental issues you've faced.  You're a strong woman, and I wish you continued success.
  Luv,
Betty
I've never killed anyone, but I frequently get satisfaction reading the obituary notices.-Clarence Darrow

Offline kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #8 on: January 03, 2009, 10:44:38 AM »
Thanks so much for your kind words BT - means a lot.
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

Offline joemutt

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,042
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #9 on: January 08, 2009, 11:42:23 PM »
Jewel, I love your spirit! I have also hiv and depression and what you said abour being more embarassed about depression than about hiv rings quite true with me. Thank you for putting that into words, it comforted me.

Offline kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #10 on: January 09, 2009, 10:38:09 AM »
Depression isn't fun for sure.  You are so welcome Joe.

What helps is I take my medicine as prescribed and do my best to keep a positive attitude in spite of the negative.
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

Offline Peter6836

  • Member
  • Posts: 391
  • Me and my Granddaughter Noa
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #11 on: January 13, 2009, 06:44:34 PM »
Jewel,
Thank you for sharing your story. You are an inspiration, when I read all you have gone through, it gives me courage and lets me know that I can make it too. It is amazing what the human spirit can overcome. We can all make it by helping each other. Even if it is just letting each other know that we all have mountains to climb.
Peter

Offline kajnjewel

  • Member
  • Posts: 71
  • Living Life with a Passion!
Re: Mental Attitude Adjustment
« Reply #12 on: January 13, 2009, 07:33:00 PM »
You are so welcome Peter.  Thanks for your kind words.

It is amazing how much a person can go through for sure.  I know I would have never made it if I didn't believe in God even though at times I often questioned his love for me.

I am grateful that some of my experiences have encouraged you to know that you, too, can endure.

Thanks again.
When you were born, you cried and the world rejoiced; live your life in such a manner that when you die, the world will cry and you will rejoice!

 


Terms of Membership for these forums
 

© 2014 Smart + Strong. All Rights Reserved.   terms of use and your privacy
Smart + Strong® is a registered trademark of CDM Publishing, LLC.