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Author Topic: Introduce yourself and meet others!  (Read 61296 times)

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Offline Cliff

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,645
Introduce yourself and meet others!
« on: June 02, 2006, 08:56:19 AM »
They say the first rule of conversation is to know who you are talking to.  So hopefully this thread will serve as a place where we all can introduce (or reintroduce) ourselves to the forum.  Possible information could include where you live, where you are from, your background, interests, likes/dislikes or whatever you want others to know about YOU!  Since this forum has been jazzed up, if you're so inclined, you can also include pictures, links to video, etc..

Offline David_CA

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,246
  • Joined: March 2006
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #1 on: June 02, 2006, 09:02:17 AM »
So Cliff, are you going to reintroduce yourself?  Just kidding; I think it's a great idea.  I notice a lot of users have no info in their profiles, which is certainly their option.  It is nice to know a bit about the people we're talking to, though.  I'll post a reintroduction a bit later.  I'm at work and need to get something productive done! 

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 Cliff

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,645
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #2 on: June 02, 2006, 09:53:38 AM »
My name is Cliff and I live in London.  I'm a 30 year-old American, born and raised on the Texas Gulf-coast, (previously was known as Texman in the forums).  My day job is helping European companies go public in the US or London as well as helping American companies buy up European companies (which probably explains why I tend to be pro-business and a free market person), that is when I'm not surfing on Aidsmeds.com, (which oddly enough seems to be one of the only few places I go to on the internet anymore).  Prior to London, I lived in New York, (for a little over a year), and Houston.  I also lived and worked in South Africa (Joburg, well really Sandton/Sunninghill) for almost 2 years.  I hope to return to New York (or Johannesburg) after London.

I love traveling for both work and pleasure (as of last count I have visited Argentina, Aruba, Austria, Bermuda, Botswana, Canada, Costa Rica, Czech Republic, Denmark, France, Finland, Germany, Gabon, Greece, Ghana, Japan, Jamaica, Lesotho, Mexico, Morocco, Mozambique, the Netherlands, Nigeria, Poland, Portugal, Puerto Rico, Russia, South Africa, Swaziland, Spain, Switzerland, Trinidad & Tobago, United Kingdom, Vatican City, Italy, Zimbabwe and Venezuela).

This year I will probably add Kazakhstan, Ireland and Iceland to the list.  And next year I hope to start adding more Asian and Middle Eastern countries, which are lacking on my list.  I should also take a trip to the former Yugoslavia republics (there must be like 15 of 'em), that will be an easy way to bump my mom from the top spot.   ;D

I've been to just about all 50 states (except for Idaho, New Hampshire and North Dakota....and I can't think of any reason to ever go there, unless it's for work or maybe to get married in NH.)

I also love Rocky Road and Pistachio almond ice cream, Sushi/Sashimi and steaks (medium rare please).

I've been positive since July 2003 and am treated at the very fine Mortimer Market (Bloomsbury) HIV clinic in London (thank you Matt).  My GP is in Soho.  I live in WC2 (which the London folks should understand).

I love the US and thinks the country (and its people, who are generally lovely and down-to-earth folks), get a bum rap.  Oh and I love Oil companies (the bigger the better), so I hate it when folks pick on them in the forums.   ;D  Both my parents, (as does like 70% of the people in Houston), work for oil companies.  I'm more like my mom (also a CPA), than my dad (a Geophysicist- which is just a fancy way of calling someone who studies, errrr licks and sniffs, rocks for mineral deposits, errr Texas Tea).  Both my parents (but especially my mom) love to travel and have been to more countries than I (well my mom has, but I'm catching up woman!!!).  My parents were very hard on me growing up, but it's only now that I can appreciate why.  Both grew up poor in small Texas towns (quite near each other....too close for my grandmother's liking), and I actually have pictures of them picking cotton, (probably in the same fields that our ancestors did as slaves), during the summer months to help pay for college and graduate school.  So yeah, I got the "we walked uphill to school both ways" a lot.

My funniest family moment, is when I was looking at a photo of my parent's wedding sitting on my grandmother's piano.  I was just asking typical questions kids ask, when something dawned on me but I couldn't quite figure it out.  My mom asked what was the matter and I started counting the months backwards, starting from when I was born (ultimately passing up the marriage month), to finally get to the month I must have been conceived, which was clearly before the wedding month.  My parents just looked at each other and laughed and my grandmother told me that was what they call a shot-gun wedding.

I have one younger sister (who is in the midst of a very painful divorce, but at least didn't have a shot-gun wedding) and a very adorable (and a know it all, like her uncle) niece and a very handsome (who loves to smile then tackle you) nephew.

I have a boyfriend, soon to be immigrating to the UK, who is actually coming to visit me in a few hours.

And I hate all things soy, except for soy sauce.

That's me.

P.S.- I guess I should have done it all in one note, but I hadn't thought about my own introduction when I posted it...LOL.

P.P.S- I love gadgets and electronics (addicted even).  And I'm taking motorcycle lessons so that I can get one of these bad boys!!!!

[attachment deleted by admin]
« Last Edit: June 03, 2006, 08:52:14 AM by Cliff »

Offline david25luvit

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,409
  • Member since March 2005
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #3 on: June 02, 2006, 09:54:34 AM »
Hey Cliff...Good idea buddy!  Especially since we seem to have so many new people.
As you know my name is David and I just moved to Theodore Alabama...  As most of
you know the last year and a half has been very challenging for me...  but thanks in
large part to this forum body, I have managed to pick up the pieces and began again.
I enjoy surfing the net, photography, potting flowers, watching movies and reading a
good book.  Just recently I began to date again and although I haven't met anyone
particularly special I am convinced that if I get back out in the world again perhaps someone
special may come along...

It is my hope that with the beginning of this new forum that we might put the past behind us
and support one another despite our differences.  There have been a lot of changes since I came
on board in March 2005 but I believe we can make this new forum a very special place for all of us.
Cliff...I commend you on starting this thread and hope others will jump on board


Modified /Update.....Now living in Mobile Alabama with a boyfriend who spends most of his time
at my new house.  ...and thanks to a certain pharmaceutical company life is pretty good again
« Last Edit: November 08, 2006, 10:30:14 AM by david25luvit »
In Memory of
Raymond David McRae III
Nov. 25, 1972- Oct. 15, 2004
I miss him terribly..........

Offline Teresa

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,753
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #4 on: June 02, 2006, 09:56:21 AM »
Hi all im Teresa. Im 48 have 2 great kids Daughter 23 and son 21. Hubby and i will be married 4 years July 1. We live in Kansas . Three years ago we moved in with my brother. He has a big house on 2.5 acres out in the country. He was diagonised with lung cancer and had his left lung removed. That happened the first year we were here. Then last year about this time they found a brain tumor and a tumor behind his left sinus. He went through radiation and it worked. Killed both tumors. SO far he has had 3 sets of scans, MRIs, pet scans, the works and no cancer has showed up. He isnt married so I went to every dr appointment, every treatment with him. Made sure he ate, fussed at him, he fussed back, but we all made it thru.

So this summer i was looking forward to having a stress free summer. Then hubby got sick. My whole life was turned upside down for awhile, but with the help from all of you i think im getting a handle on it. Hubby wanted my brother to know about his HIV since we are living with him. My brother asked me questions and when i answered them best i could he gave me a hug..told me he was glad that i had tested negtive. Said as far as he was concerned it was life as usual around here. Hubby had a home here. This was our home too. Always would be.

So most of my days are filled with taking care of the house and the yard. I love mowing...get to ride on a little john deere tractor. Kinda like riding a go cart...LOL BUt damn i had to learn the hard way to duck going under those trees. Tree limbs dont give much when u run into them.

This has been my life for the past 3 years. Im just so thankful that my brother is still here,  hubby is getting better and stronger everyday(NO MORE FEVERS!!!) and that i found this place.

Love
Teresa
aka kansanwife on old forums
« Last Edit: June 04, 2006, 07:06:06 PM by Teresa »
Hubby HIV+ 5/5/06
CD4:320
  %: 26.7
 VL: <20
Atripla (started it 8/24/06)
 

Offline allopathicholistic

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,258
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #5 on: June 02, 2006, 10:10:31 AM »
I'm Alex, also known as Monsieur Numbskull. I'm into nutrition, aromatherapy and all that jazz  8)
« Last Edit: November 26, 2006, 08:52:28 PM by allopathicholistic »

Offline Moffie65

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,755
  • Living POZ since 1983
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #6 on: June 02, 2006, 10:19:04 AM »
Well Folks, and Cliff,

I am going to do this the easy way, due to the fact that my history lives right here on this site, and I am way to foggy these days to re-type the whole thing.  So, here is the link to the specific Blog here on AIDSmeds.com where you can read away.  If you go to subsequent Blogs, you will read even more about my childhood in Arkansas, Oklahoma, California, Tanzania, and Kenya.

http://www.aidsmeds.com/blogs/tim/archives/2005/08/

Enjoy, and In Love.
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 EBmemphis

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #7 on: June 02, 2006, 10:53:44 AM »
Cliff,

What a great idea.  I feel like I know so many here, but I usually keep to myself.  I live in memphis if you couldn't tell.  ;)  I have known I am positive for two years.   Its been quite a road, when I found out I had a t-cell count of 19, but what a difference a couple years and meds make.  I am up to 230 now and feeling great.  I have a great husband that takes pretty good care of me.  I haven't worked since I found out,  but keep my self pretty busy with yard and such. I have to thank so many of you here, since I found this site I realize how many of us that are dealing with this, and realized life does go on.   :)  Take care all and have a great weekend.

Love,

Eric

Offline manchesteruk

  • Member
  • Posts: 630
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #8 on: June 02, 2006, 11:00:39 AM »
I'll have a bash at this i'll probably change it again later though!

My names Chris i'm 23 and I was born in Manchester.  I've since moved around several different parts of the UK with my family before settling back into Manchester to start university 4 years ago.  I've just finsihed university recently so my days currently consist of trying to find a job.  As a side note i've had more jobs than would probably be considered normal.  The amount of countries i've visited is absolutely shamefull it's something I plan to change when I get more money, if I ever get to half the places Cliff has been i'll be doing well!

I have a list as long as my arm of the things i'd like to experience yet I have no idea or ever have had any idea what I want to achieve with my life if that makes any sense.  I am working on that though.  I live with two friends being a recent ex-student my interests tend to involve drinking but I also have a huge passion for music but I won't get started on that or i'd be here all day!

I was diagnosed HIV+ in Nov, 05 and infected in July of the same year.  I'm lucky that i've got a great family and a really supportive group of friends none of which have given me any grief when i've told them.

I'll come back to this and add some more when i've had a think!

Chris
Diagnosed 11/05

"Life is too important to be taken seriously" Oscar Wilde

Offline Oscar

  • Member
  • Posts: 244
  • 20 Years POZ
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #9 on: June 02, 2006, 11:39:23 AM »
Thank you Cliff!

My name is Dan I was born in a small town in North West Tn called Union City. We moved to Jackson, TN after I graduated high school in 1982. In the fall of that year I went to school in Oxford, Mississippi and met my first gay love Terrell. That is also where I met my dear friend Terry who passed away on April 10Th of this year.  My friends and I stood out like you wouldn't believe in that close minded southern town so we high tailed it to Memphis every chance we could.(which was often) I left Oxford at the end of the school year and moved to Memphis to attend Memphis State University in June 1983.

 I lived in Memphis from 1983-1992 when I moved back to Jackson. I was a very sick puppy at that time because I didn't take care of myself then & did a lot of things to my body that I shouldn't have. I have had 3 long -term  relationships in my adult life. Terrell, Jeff & Chuck. Jeff infected me with HIV.  We were together from 1984-1986. We both found out about our status at the same time in 1986. I was 23 years old at the time. I felt like my life was over then and that I would have been dead before I was 30 yrs old.

Chuck and I were together from 1988-1992. This was my last serious long term relationship. I infected him. That was a very self destructive time in my life doing drugs and drinking. It is a period I would rather forget.

1992 I moved back to Jackson because I had lost my drivers license for 4 years due to multiple DWI's in a 12 month period. also my father's heath was failing he had a major heart attack. & my own health was in a serious state at the time.

I've been through some serious health issues through most of the '90s PCP, intestinal parasites. For a long time I refused to take my meds because of deep depression, low self esteem. I had a hard time accepting the fact that I had to take complicated drug regimens. I had a real love-hate relationship with the meds . Everytime I put a pill in my mouth it reminded me that I was different from everyone else. I felt alone & isolated.

I stopped working in Dec 2002 two days before my 40th birthday. I couldn't handle managing 200+ employees anymore and the long 60+ hours a week were killing me. I couldn't stay on my med schedule was still fighting serious depression my health was in a serious state when I left.

Then Oscar came into my life on June 9, 2001. This little tenacious Miniature Schnauzer gave me something to hold on to. He gave me a purpose for my life to get up everyday and get moving.

On March 8, 2003 PCP almost killed me. I spent over a month in the hospital fighting for my life. Another month going to the infusion clinic for IV antibiotics. Then in summer of 2003 I had one of the worst cases of shingles the infectious disease doctor's had ever seen @ Jackson-Madison County General Hospital. The entire left side of my head, face, & neck were covered. It was even  inside my left ear & had almost made it to my left eye. I spent another 3 weeks in the hospital.  & Another month in the infusion clinic.  &  the scars STILL tingle and itch to this day. I have been on disability since July of 2003.

In the summer of 2003 I discovered this  forum. I lurked for a while & posted from time to time. I didn't really join the discussions until May of 2005.

As many of you know I last Oscar earlier this year. I still haven't gotten over the loss of my little dog. He saved my life. I really believe that. Anyway I've rambled on too long.

A few more "stats" about me.

I have two older sisters.
I Love  80's new wave music, alternative, & indie British Rock.
I love POP art, mid century modern antiques.
My favorite books are In the Garden Of Good & Evil, Confederacy of Dunces, On The Road, Geek Love, Truck, & Practical Demonkeeping.
I love Japanese, Italian, & Thai food.
I don't watch much TV. Would rather be doing something else. I do have certain shows I watch. Grey's Anatomy, Boston Legal, CSI.

I was an Executive Team Leader for a major discount department store from 1995-2002. A bill collector for 3 years for a large Nashville based law firm. & now I am a part time bank teller for a large regional bank. My career was derailed by HIV. I wish I could go back to work full time and get off disability. But I am affraid to make that step. Affraid I will get sick or won't be able to get insurance to cover my meds. I like having the free time to do the things I like to do and enjoy my life doing the things that make me happy.

I mountain bike, enjoy hiking. garden in the yard & spend a lot of time working on cataloging my vast CD collection.

That is all I can think of. Thank you all for your support, & concern since I have been here at the forums. You all have touched my life in a way I never expected. I cherish each and every one of you. Now lets get to Montreal and have the time of our lives!  & Make new precious memories that I know I will cherish forever.

In much appreciation and love,

Dan J.



[attachment deleted by admin]
« Last Edit: June 02, 2006, 12:53:09 PM by Oscar »

Offline Robert

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,644
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #10 on: June 02, 2006, 11:55:49 AM »
Let's try this again.  My first entry went POOF!

Cliff, this is a great idea but with 374 members and still counting, this could be an incredibly long thread.  Maybe we need a new forum just for this particular reason.

Anyway, my name is Robert (formerly known as RedBluff),  My partner MIchael and I have been together for 25+ years.  We met in San Francisco and lived there together until we moved up here full time 1 year ago.  I was a travel agent in my previous life and I'm not even close to the number of countries Cliff has visited and I did it for a living.  Let's just say I've been on all the continents save 2: Antartica and Australia.
  
I was born in Denver, CO and moved to Sacramento, CA. in 1974 after I had graduated from college.  In 1980 I met Michael in San Francisco at one of the local bars.  We've been together ever since.  These days you meet people through the internet.  BAck then it was at the bars.

Michael and I love SF very much and have many good memories there but after I came down with PCP we decided a rural life was more to our liking.  In 2000 we started looking for property in N. California and stumbled upon our little place here in Red Bluff, about 4 hours N. of SF,  We have 33 acres with a pond, a barn, rolling hills and lots of Live Oak.  2 dogs. (We've buried 2 dogs down by the pond)  I'm thinking of getting some sheep or llamas for grazing like Jan but right now I have enough to keep me busy.

My twin brother lives about 2 hours north of us, on the California/ Oregon border.  Another brother lives not much futher away in Oregon so we're able to visit fairly often.  I've got 3 other brothers scattered across the country.

I love gardening but what really keeps me busy and satisfied is chopping down trees and bucking them for fire wood.  There is nothing prettier than a cord of wood.

robert

..........

Offline sdcabincrew74

  • Member
  • Posts: 540
    • My Manhunt account
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #11 on: June 02, 2006, 12:06:56 PM »
Oy Vey...

I live in San Diego, CA.  Born and raised in Pittsburgh, PA.  I am currently a flight attendant.  I am based in Phoenix, AZ and usually only get to spend 3 days a week in CA with my partner cat and dog.  My partner and I have been together for 8 plus years.  He is neg and I was diagnosed POZ in March of 05 and had PCP and MAC.  I am currently healthy (VL <50, CD4 = 650ish).

I have a supportive group of friends and a great family.  My partner and I travel a lot since we fly for free.  There are too many places to list but the oddest is probably Kuwait City (which is actually very nice).  I have a BS in Computer Science from the University of Pittsburgh and have also gotten my MBA from San Diego State University.

I guess that is it, I will be 32 this year and that does not seem as old as I once thought it was.  I live my life day-by-day because who knows what tomorrow will bring.  I have an online journal, which is actually kind of boring ... the address is http://jmm8111jr.journalspace.com/

I guess that is it for now.
The difference between an overnight and a layover is luck!

Offline The Canuck

  • Member
  • Posts: 628
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #12 on: June 02, 2006, 12:10:28 PM »
Hi ya'll !

My name is Claude and live in the French part of Canada nearby Quebec City ( 2 1/4 hrs East of Montreal for those who don't know where it is located. I was raised in French but manage in English although this is far from being perfect. I'm a 49 years old gay male ( single ) and will turn 50 soon ( ouch!!!). I consider myself as a 25 years old guy with the maturity of a 40 years old, still young at heart and intend to remain as such. I'm basically shy but not so much since I reached about 35, and could be totally nuts sometimes.  :o

I have a Master degree in chemistry ( told ya' I was totally nuts !!! ) and work at home as a freelance / consultant for about 15 years now. I wouldn't want to go back and work for someone else. I prefer to be my own boss and do as I please, and besides make more money as a consultant than when I was working for the government and private companies.

Unfortunately I was diagnosed HIV+ in early September 2001 with a VL = 183,000 and CD4 = 167. I was referred to a great clinic over here and just love everyone working there. I was put on meds right away and after 8 months I became undetectable and remained as such ever since. My CD4 kept increasing as well and now at 958 ( 38%). This is a bit lower than my previous results but CD4 of 1020 or 958 is about the same so I consider myself extremely lucky of not having to worried about this.

I enjoy to see my friends, good music, food and wine. I also enjoy visiting other countries and excepted for several places in the USA & Canada I went to several European countries ( The Netherlands, Belgium ( Brussels ), UK ( London ), Germany, Denmark, Romania, Czech Republic, Hungary and Austria. My next trip will be to France. I'm looking forward to meet several persons from this forum during the AMG06 in Montreal.

Regards,

The Canuck
(Who isn't very good for talking about himself...but nevertheless gave it a shot)

Edited : I forgot to mention a few things and just added it.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2006, 12:20:00 PM by The Canuck »

Offline heartforyou

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,105
  • I must be a survivor in many ways...
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #13 on: June 02, 2006, 12:31:59 PM »
Hi everyone, all newbies now,

My name is Herman and I am 50 years old. I am officially married to Patrick (who remained negative since we met) and we have a Wellness Center in the coastal town of Knokke, Belgium. My dog is called Lola and she is a darling Jack Russell of 5 years old.
Being a sportsman I spent most of my free time in life on my surfboard and snowboard, two sports I trained other people in.
I attended medical school at the age of 17, pretty young and inexperienced. After that I became an airline steward with Lufthansa.
That job  brought me around the world including the US, where I got infected in the early eighties when nobody knew about AIDS.
For almost 13 years I went on flying and refused to take any meds, beside homeopathic drugs. After 18 years of working for the airline I suddenly got PCP and that was the beginning of the end.
I had to stop flying, my t-count dropped to 17 and I was told I had a couple of months left. Well, I started meds, changed combos 10 times and veered back to 950 t-cells. I am undetectable since 9 years now, have a lot of energy and am still working.
I came back from a severe depression this year, thank to my AM family.

My hobby is languages: I speak seven of them and speak some Arabic, Greek and mandarin Chinese.
I love oriental food, nature and people. I play the piano and love Bach.
I have one sister and both my parents still are alive , both 82. Dad was a lawyer and banker and still is  active. Mom is french and a darling mother.
I am a fighter, with a good heart and known to be very patient. But I can't stand injustice.

Belgium's capital Brussels,  is known as the heart of Europe. 60% of the population speaks Flemish, 35 % french and 5% German. Good food and chocolates is what we are known for.

I hope you got to know me  a little better now.

But let me finish by telling you : it really doesn't matter where  we come from or what we are. We can only walk this HIV path together and that is why I am here to stay.

Herman :)
Diagnosed in 1987 and still kicking
Viread, Kivexa (Epzicom),Viramune once daily

Happiness is the freedom of breathing fresh air every day.

jerry

  • Guest
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #14 on: June 02, 2006, 12:47:47 PM »
Hi I'm Jerry aka: jccj34 from the old forums.

I became Hiv positive in December 2004. My first counts were CD4=1. My CD4=112 as of Feb 06. I'm 34 and soon will be 35 and living a healthily life at the moment. Not sick anymore and take my meds everyday which at time's are very hard. I have to get my blood work done next week hopefully my numbers will be up.

Not much to know about me on here I try too keep to myself and visit this site regularly. This is my home away from home the people on here are my true family and only friends that I can relate too.

To read more about me go and visit my page.



Offline MoltenStorm

  • Member
  • Posts: 477
  • Poz & Fabulous
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #15 on: June 02, 2006, 12:49:58 PM »
Howdy All,

I am a white, gay male who was born in Savannah, GA, in the lovely year of 1984 (22), so I'm a certified southern belle. My name is John. My dad was in the U.S. Army, so I was able to explore Belguim, Germany, France, Austria, Switzerland, England, Georgia (state), and finally, Texas. He retired in 2001, so I have since been to Washington, California, and New York. The list isn’t as impressive as Cliff’s, but I’m working on it!

I love gardening, but I hate Texas summers, so I haven’t gardened in quite some time. I moved to Texas in August of 1997 (San Antonio, specifically). I plan to someday leave Texas for a cooler climate, but I tolerate it for now. No offense to native Texans, but I can’t deal with the heat. I’m a red head, and we do NOT do heat.

I was diagnosed as HIV+ in April of this year, so I’m really new to this. I was infected in late July or early August of 2005 since my acute infection symptoms kicked in late August.

I’m a bit of a devil’s advocate, and I have to fight off the tendency to ruffle feathers. I find it quite humorous and enjoyable. However, I read the forum rules, and that’ll get me banned, so I’m being good! I want a gold star and a chocolate chip cookie. I enjoy asking questions, and there are times where I will go where no one wants to go. (i.e. Asking a drag queen if she’s pre-op or post at dinner, asking my parents if they’ve ever 69ed at the dinner table, and asking a bunch of straight men why they wouldn’t let their girlfriends/wives play with their prostate.)

I am single as of early May. The person I was seeing didn’t want to deal with his fears of HIV, so he opted for finding someone else. I can’t blame him as that’s his choice, but I had hoped he was bigger than that. I’m not really interested in jumping back into the dating scene just yet. I have more important things on my mind right now. However, if I met a nice person when I wasn’t expecting it, who knows…

That’s me in a nutshell except for the part of where I love reading philosophy.


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"Love is always patient and kind. It is never jealous. Love is never boastful nor conceited. It is never rude or selfish. It does not take offense and is not resentful. Love takes no pleasure in other people's sins, but delights in the truth. It is always ready to excuse, to trust, to hope, and to endure whatever comes." - 1 Corinthians 13:4-7, adaptation in A Walk To Remember

CD4: 555 / 29% / Undetectable - 7 Nov 2006
CD4: 555 / 29% / Undetectable - 5 Feb 2007

Offline Ronald1958

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #16 on: June 02, 2006, 01:16:01 PM »
Re intoduction to Ronald1958 ;D

 

I was diagnosed with the PML (Progressive Multifocal Leucoencepholapathy - a mouth full  :o - look it up on the Internet)  in Nov 99.  I probably was positive since 1992 – the best I could figure.  I didn’t want to know so never got tested until everything started falling apart and by then – too late.  In the end of October 99, I was beginning to lose my handwriting and my speech slurred and my balance seemed off.  So, in I went to the hospital Nov 1 and by Nov 5, walking was shaky and I needed a walker. The PML was confirmed by a spinal tap.   A brain biopsy was considered redundant and an unnecessary risk.  I was living in NYC then with a lover and just got progressively worse until Feb 2000 when my sister came and took me back to Pennsylvania – I was sure I’d die soon.  My balance was gone, my coordination – no fine motor skills, my voice was a croak – I was bed-ridden by then.  I even told my sisters, I wanted to stop taking the meds.  But, Arlene made me swear to keep taking them until the next results of my blood work – my t-cells climbed maybe to 50 and VL dropped tremendously to like 50,000.  Before that, my lover left – ahhhhhhhh.  Oh, well!  At the diagnosis, my t-cells were 10 and VL 500,000!  Well, Arlene won so now my t-cells are 563 and VL undetectable (has been since July 2001)

 

My therapies and exercises take up a lot of time Monday through Friday.  80% of my therapy I have created on my own.  I have limited therapy sessions on my insurance too – 30 hours a year.  I basically go to make sure what I do is the right way.  The therapists are amazed at the things I do!  So, I learn some things from the therapists but most have been on my own and Arlene’s help.  I have a schedule I follow for things like the stationary bike, parallel bars, free weight dumb bells, mat or bed calisthenics, etc.  I break them up during the day between household chores and my hobbies, so I am not a fanatic about them (not a gym bunny, but fit).  I stick to my routines during the week and on weekends, I only do the bike, reading aloud and my handwriting practice, so my weekends are free time.  I am proud of my muscles from all them – I think I am in better shape than 20 yrs ago!  As of June 1, I am adding "Windsor Pilates" and my Nordic Flex weight system into my routine.  I have been doing regular Pilates, but the new version has a lot more exercises.  I am going to go back to the Nordic Flex - a weight system with pulleys.  I haven't done it since before getting sick at the end of 1999 and even then - not very focused then.  Now, I can easily do chest and shoulder presses and look forward to it.  I'll have to send my routine soon! 

 

I read aloud every day to help my diction and it gives me a reason to read a lot of books and novels (probably over 75 books now)  A few pages every day and everything from romantic comedies, horror, thrillers, Sci-fi, gay, religious, HIV related….  Maybe, 5 years ago, a speech therapist said I’d never improve – Arlene and I canned him immediately and Arlene went over lists and phrases with me and then I started reading books – 4 to 6 pages aloud for diction and volume.  Now, I am on the phone with family, friends and for personal business.  I am a writer, so I tend to like my LONG e-mails!  HA HA

 

I practice my handwriting every day too.  I write very well now, but I keep it up and so I don’t get bored, I write out my language lessons.  I have been teaching myself Spanish and French and stagger them each day.  I am on Spanish III and French I.  I started with just Spanish, but decided to branch out.  Entiendo que tu sabes!

 

I like writing or in this case typing – I wrote a book and it is at a literary agent now since 10/1/05 in hopes of finding a publisher soon.  7 have it and 2 have turned me down – 5 more for now.  I have always wanted to write and since having the PML from the HIV, I figured, “Why not?”  The first book is autobiographical from High School until recently – covering 30 years maybe.  Another agent suggested some changes which I am doing now in hopes that will help to when I re-submit it to her!  I did start book #2, but have shelved it for now with the re-write of #1.  ...busy, busy, busy….

 

My big love is my hobby of painting.  I like sketching too.  I haven’t really done anything recently, but am painting a wood sculpture for my sister and her husband.  I have started another painting, but haven’t worked on it lately. 


I live with my sister, Arlene and her husband.  They have their own freight expediting company with their own truck, so I am their house sitter 4 weeks at a time, then they come home for 3 days and then they are off again.  I like the alone time.  I also baby sit their 2 white shepherds – Shadow, the 5 yr old male and Shiloh, the 3 yr old female.  I love them dearly.  They are sweet, playful and goofy.  Shadow is 90 lbs and Shiloh, 100 lbs.

 

I am nutty about cowboys – so, I have a collection of 8 cowboy hats – all different styles and colors.

 

I also collect crosses/ crucifixes – 7, so far.

 

I love E-mailing and writing letters.  If friends have no computer (Egads!), I write.  I go nuts on sending Christmas cards.  I try to send birthday cards as much as possible.

 

Christmas – I go overboard with decorations and I enjoy most all Holidays!

 

I like being active doing day to day things like raking leaves, shoveling the walk, gardening (veggie).  I love being outdoors.  In the summer, I love sunbathing.  September is my favorite month.

 

Music is all kinds – Country, Pop, Rock, Oldies, 80s, dance, disco, salsa and even polkas!  Country is my favorite now. I do like the new Madonna and Shakira though!

 

Movies – romantic comedies, comedies, Sci-fi, thrillers, horror (not gory).

 

TV – LOVE Desperate Housewives, Lost, Grey’s Anatomy, Surface, Invasion, Ghost Whisperer, Will & Grace, Joey, George Lopez, Freddie.  Some HBO series!

 

I like cooking and baking.  I like baking pumpkin pies, pumpkin bread, Christmas cookies, carrot cakes, chocolate cake!  I can cook anything like roasts, soups, spaghetti, etc., etc.

 

I am spiritual, not religious.  I do not believe in organized religion, but use my Catholicism as my guide to spirituality.  I read everything I can like Gnosticism, Kabbalah, Judaism, etc. 

 

I used to work in the garment industry in NYC too!!  I lived and worked in NYC for 12 years until 6 years ago.  I worked in the Children’s accessory market – backpacks, handbags, totes, etc.  The first 5 years with Mischief Makers (a division of Holiday Fair), then Dover Kidz for a year (part of a huge int’l corp), a year at Pacific Connections (started a Children’s division from nada) and then finally I finished again with Mischief Makers for the last 5 years.  MM was a good company and over the last 5 years with MM, I had worked my way up to president even.  I enjoyed working with Holiday Fair.  I had my pick of house accounts and took Walmart, Target, Mervyn’s, Sears, Kohl’s, JC Penney, Macy’s, Toys R Us and Dillard’s.  I traveled to them all the time and accompanied other salespeople to theirs too, if I felt the need to go.  I always seemed to be traveling all over the US at least every 2 weeks, but concentrated of course on my accounts first.  Dallas, Chicago, Arkansas, Minneapolis, San Francisco, Milwaukee.  I did go to Los Angeles a lot too, because during the last 3 years I was at MM, Holiday Fair got very heavily into licensing and Warner Brothers was the largest.  The others were in NYC.  Also, I went to Las Vegas twice a year for the last 3 years for M.A.G.I.C. – the big fashion convention (which I enjoyed).

I miss NYC and my friends there - <sigh>

 

Before I moved to NYC in May 1987, I lived north of Philadelphia (New Hope – LOVED it!) for 5 years as a retail manager for a department store, then a buyer for them.

 

Prior to Philly, I lived at home until 1982 and worked my way up in a department store until they moved me to Philly.

 

I am sure I gave you a lot to mull over.  I have to save some things for later!

 

Hope you are amused!

P.S.  All of this is now done from a wheelchair!  I like being active and enjoy being fit!
« Last Edit: June 02, 2006, 01:47:52 PM by Ronald1958 »
diagnosed PML Nov 1999

was t-cells 10 and VL 500,000+

as of 11/15/06  - t-cells 789; VL undetectable again and has been since July '01

Offline doyourowndamndishes

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #17 on: June 02, 2006, 02:41:21 PM »
CRAP!!

I was half way through my entry when I was called away from the computer and then I timed out and so have to do this all over again!!
CRAP CRAP CRAP CRAP CRAP CRAP CRAP!
OK, here I go AGAIN!

Hi all, my name is Alan Grozelle.  I was born downtown Toronto, Ontario.  Approximately 10 months later me adoptive family kidnapped me to Scarborough <YICK!!> where I was unfortunately raised for far too many years!  I was able to briefly escape for a short stint while I pursued my undergrad at the University of Western Ontario.  Upon graduating with Honours History I returned home for about a year and a half till I had enough money to get me the hell outta there and move back down to the city proper where I've lived ever since.  About three years after finally moving out I was accepted at OISE/UT (Ontario Institute for Studies in Education/University of Toronto) where I received me Bachelor of Education.  Yes, presently I am an elementary school teacher, specialized in teaching children predominately with learning disabilities.  This year I've been assigned to grades 6-8.


I am single and live alone except for the company of me Grandma's bequeathed cat Blackie.  At this point in me life I don't think I could ever go back to the room mate thing.  I love me privacy far too much. What do I like?  Well, I have very eclectic tastes and dear friends have always called me an enigma.  Whether I should be flattered by that or not I still don't know!  I'm a total gamer: strategy board games, video games (can't live without me XBOX360 and PS2 soon to be replaced with the PS3! WOO HOO!!), card games, board games (I still LOVE Mouse Trap!).  I love many genres of music; I've been told that I'm a fantastic chef, my specialties are Asian cuisine, mainly Chinese but I do a mean Thai and Japanese as well (okanomi! MMMMMMMMMMMMM).  I love working with energy and am presently working towards me Reiki Level 1.  I'm not sure if this is where I'll end up with regards to energy work but I do want to pursue energy healing and I figure Reiki is a great place to start. 

I've been hiv+ for about 8 years now, and other than having a blip in me numbers not too long ago, I am  still healthy (vl: <50; cd4s: 600s).  Next lab results come in this Tuesday.  My present combo is Kivexa (Epizcom) and Atazanavir.  Since switching Atazanavir from Kaletra (which REALLY buggered up me cholesterol and triglycerides) 6 months ago, the decrease in the lipid profile has been astonishing.

Well, I know I wrote more the first time but I'm now brain dead so I'm stopping here.  So here be some parts that make up me!

Cheers!
"All that we are is theresult of what we have thought." -Buddha

Offline cubbybear

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  • Joined August 2005.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #18 on: June 02, 2006, 07:20:25 PM »
Hey guys.

I'll reintroduce myself to those who don't know me (or very well).  I'm 35 years young, born on April 22nd and I'm a typical Taurean (Stubborn, Possessive, Jealous, Creative, Passionate, Earthy, Security/Comfort Whore).  As much as I hate stereotypes, in the gay culture I identify as a Cub, which is generally an outdoorsy, masculine type generally with facial hair and more than his fair share of body fur and like the same.  I was born in Croydon, Surrey in the UK, but have lived in Australia since I was 3 years old.  One of my two brothers remained in the UK with relatives and I have not seen, nor spoken to him since I was 3 so I have a missing brother somewhere.

I lost my remaining brother when I was 14 to a motorcycle accident, one that was a short distance from my home and my school bus drove past.  Not a very good experience to say the least for a 14 year old on his way home from school.  I recognised his mangled bike & helmet when we drove past.  I had worked as a Vet Nurse since leaving high school, but quit when I was 25 to look after my parents as both had terminal cancer.  Life sucks right.  Anyway, we move on, and I started in the Heathcare field looking after people who were terminally ill and those who had aquired brain injuries as an Assistant Nurse, I've since been to university to study nursing and now I am a Registered Nurse in Melbourne, Australia.

I have been in 2 serious relationships.  One with my first partner of 13 years I met when I was about 18 (he was/is negative), and my current partner (of 4 years, also negative) which has been more of a rollercoaster ride than dealing with HIV.  Still not sure what is happening with that relationship, only time will tell.  I picked up HIV somewhere after my first partner and my current one.  I was pretty reckless and had a lot of unprotected sex with people of whom I didn't even know their names, and at the time, I really didn't care.  My bad, I was just enjoying some self destructive behaviour because my 13 year relationship ended and I thought my life was over.  I was wrong.

I found out I was HIV positive in September 2005, with a cd4 count of 35, and a viral load of 293,000.  I also had PCP, and pancytopenia (very low counts of all types of blood cells) as well as oesophageal thrush.  Several weeks in hospital and meds soon saw me return to the land of the living.  I was initially put on Combivir & Sustiva but had a bad reaction to the AZT and needed a blood transfusion.  Today I am healthy again and sitting at cd4 of 197 (and steadily getting higher) and viral load is undetectable on Turvada and Sustiva (Efavirenz).  Dealing with HIV hasn't been easy, but I m still here.  I no longer think about it all day every day, and most days I forget I even have it until it's med time, and then it's usually out of my head again.

I love computers and the internet and I am a total role playing game nut, both online (Guildwars, D&DO, WOW, Diablo2, NWN) and offline (Dungeons & Dragons).  I love dungeons & dragons (been playing it since I was 14) and similar games, and find they have always been great "escapism" from real life when I need to unwind.

I also love listening to music, and aspire to have my ipod surgically attached.  I love all types of trance music, especially floaty female vocals, chillout, industrial, tribal and progressive.  I don't mind some club/dance remixes also and some ballads/alternative tunes especially james blunt and evanescence.

I also love animals of all types, and this is the first time in my life where I have not really had many pets.  I am hoping to get another boxer puppy soon.

Thanks for reading and getting to know me a little bit better.  I love you all, but you knew that already.

("")("") <--- my symbol for cub paws (cubbyhugs).
Matt
There's a bear in there!
Positive since 2000
Diagnosed 17/9/2005 CD4 35 VL 293,000
Meds 23/9/2005 Sustiva/Truvada
Currently CD4 232 VL Undetectable

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #19 on: June 02, 2006, 07:43:19 PM »
Hey, I started it, see my thread

-matt

The NEWT
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline Life

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  • Member 2005
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #20 on: June 02, 2006, 07:49:34 PM »
You know how you get use to something in your home and your husband moves everything around while your at work.  That's what I feel with this new system.  Crap!!!  I gota start over and learn shit again.....  Oh well....

Hi Gang..  I got my hiv card 10 months ago along with my husband William.  We both live in Aspen Colorado and have a little home on the Roaring fork river.  I am the accountant the EMT guy and my husband is in higher Education and makes people smarter than me.  It has been a exciting ride of discovery these past 10 months and you guys got me through so much crap, I am forever grateful.  This is a long term relationship with all of you..

Where do I mail my 10 bucks to get the owners manual for this site?  lol  

Offline parquenord

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #21 on: June 02, 2006, 08:07:14 PM »
I am new to the forum and new to HIV.  My status was confirmed May 24th (Last week).
I was born and raised in Long Beach, California.  Good kid, honors student, Eagle Scout, President of Junior Republicans, and a sissy. I hated sports! I was so glad to graduate high school and leave behind the humiliation of being athletically challenged.  I went to college at Cal Poly University in Pomona and graduated 4 years later with a degree in Landscape Architecture.  Spent the summer between junior and senior years driving a Renault station wagon throughout Europe with my buddy Claude. Lived in Long Beach after graduation and worked in Orange County (couldn’t live there…too red-state).  Obviously my politics changed dramatically and by 1980, I was campaigning for John Anderson (anyone remember him?).  I went to my first gay bar, The Silver Fox in Belmont Heights, in May of 1982.  I remember them handing out pamphlets at the door warning of the “Gay Cancer”.  I threw mine away thinking that’s someone else’s problem.  I was more interested in getting all the sex I could.  I had a lot of time to make up for. I was 28 years old and still a virgin!  I was going to the bars almost every night, coming home at 3 or so in the morning, and going to work the next day.  I don’t know how I did it and don’t know how I avoided catching the “gay cancer”. On Halloween of that year I met Mike, another Long Beach native who was a grad student at the University of Oregon. I brought him home with me that night and we have been together ever since.  In 1984 we moved to Seattle.  Lived in a loft in Pioneer Square and loved it.  We would walk to the Pike Market every Saturday morning, have breakfast at the 3 Sister’s and then buy ingredients for dinner.  I loved it there!  A fellow landscape architect and I opened our own landscape architecture firm with a fledgling company named Microsoft as our primary client. But I didn’t like being my own boss, so I sold out to my business partner and found a new position in Columbia, Maryland.  We moved to Baltimore in December of 1988.  I hated it!  Hated the weather, the job, the east coast snobbery, and the gay community. Mike worked in Bethesda and commuted by train every day.  I lost my job two years later and we hightailed it back to the west coast and ended up in San Diego.  We bought an 80 year-old tudor bungalow ten years ago and just finished a major remodel this month.  We have two Jack Russell Terriers, Zoe and Zachary (Mother and son). I work as a landscape arichitect for the state (Governor Arnold is my boss) and have excellent benefits and health care…I thank god for that.  We are both very close to my family. They’ve always been very supportive of Mike and me.  I have four siblings all within a 2 hour drive. I've told my younger sister, who is also my best friend. My mother passed away from COPD last year and my father lives an hour away.  I enjoy following politics, design, travel, reading, cooking and gardening.  I still hate sports!  My life was going along pretty well until last Wednesday.  I got my first lab results this week. My  CD-4 is 1280 (50%), but my Vl is 498,000!  Have the first appointment with my HIV specialist on Tuesday. Mike will go with me. He has been very supportive and I thank God that I have him to help me get through this.  Right now I’m scared as hell to what lies ahead and so g’damned angry with myself for getting into this mess. What have I done? That’s me, Neil, in a nutshell.
« Last Edit: June 02, 2006, 08:09:54 PM by parquenord »
"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt"

Bertrand Russell (1872-1970)

Offline Christine

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #22 on: June 02, 2006, 08:11:45 PM »
Hi Everyone!
I am Christine from Pennsylvania, USA. I am 39, turning 40 in September. I have been married for 12 years, and have 4 dogs. My husband is negative, and has been very wonderful through all of this, as has been my family and friends. I am pretty sure I was infected in '92( i had a really bad flu-like event for about three weeks, and I am pretty sure that was when I converted) from my then boyfriend, although he never admitted he was +, or that he was not being monogamous. I received a phone call from another woman who he was with, and she told me to ask him about their life together. I asked her directly if she was +, and she just said I had to ask him. Which I did, and he did not say a word-just sat there in his chair. Would not say yes I am, no I am not, didn't even apologize for cheating. I was done. I called it quits, and moved on with my life.

I was in denial for about a year, and during that time I met my future husband. I told him all about what had happened, and we went and both got tested, and received our results together. I was +, and he was -. He said he still wanted to be together (this was before we were married), and that there were no guarantees on how long any of us have together, and he would take what time he was given. He is a really good guy.

I am very fortunate to have a fantastic doctor and nurse coordinator at Penn State University Hospital. I have not been as lucky with my meds or my response to the meds. Right now my t-cells are at 17, and vl around 20,000. My vl has never been undetectable. In 2001, I was in the hospital for a month with a bacterial infection. And this October, until presently, I have had a series of problems. I had Serotonin Syndrome from a reaction of Norvir and Effexor, then while in the hospital they found food poisoning. Then I had horrible nausea, and vomiting from Lexiva and Invirase, then PCP, and finally C-Diff from the antibiotic for the PCP.

But, I am still hanging in there. Some days can be pretty rough, and I feel so blessed that I have found these forums. Everyone is very kind, and it helps to know that I am not alone.

I like to read, watch movies, do rubber stamping. I used to work out pretty regularly before October with weights, and yoga. I do clicker training with my dogs. I like to cook, bake mostly. I used to work in the hotel industry as a convention coordinator until the hours and stress started to effect my health. I went to Penn State, and have a degree in Sociology, although I never used it because I could not find a job where I could pay my bills, and student loans. Give your case workers or social workers a big, they just don't get paid enough for what they do.

Well, that's my story. Thanks for reading it. I hope it was not to long, I tend to ramble sometimes...
Christine

Also- thanks so much for the list owners for adding spell check. I think I am the worst speller in the world, and it really helps!
Poz since '93. Currently on Procrit, Azithromax, Pentamidine, Valcyte, Levothyroxine, Zoloft, Epzicom, Prezista, Viread, Norvir, and GS-9137 study drug. As needed: Trazodone, Atavan, Diflucan, Zofran, Hydrocodone, Octreotide

5/30/07 t-cells 9; vl 275,000

Online J.R.E.

  • Member
  • Posts: 7,114
  • Joined Dec-2003 Living positive, since 1985.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #23 on: June 02, 2006, 08:16:49 PM »
Hello Cliff,

 Thanks for starting this thread. After reading Matt's reintroduction, I also thought it would be a great idea for people that may not have introduced themselves, to go ahead and do so, if they felt comfortable enough.

 So, I will also reintroduce myself here to everyone. My name is Ray, I am 54 years of age. I will be 55 in December, and can't wait to be officially declared a "senior citizen". Maaannn, that sounds old. Everytime I see that number written down, I cringe a little. I don't consider myself as being 54 years of age, I still very much feel like I am in my 30's.(although at other times, I can feel like I am in my 80's)-- Depends on the day/ week / month...
I was born in Western New York State, About 7 miles or so, south of Niagara Falls. It was a great area to be area to be raised in. Decent schools, always something to do. We never got bored when we kids growing up.

 I quit school in my senior year. Things were tough at home, and I needed to help out. After completing, the necessary courses, I received my diploma, while in the Army. I was drafted into the Army, in 1971. And completed  my two years of service,honorably, of which I have no regrets.

I moved to Florida in 1980.(western New York's economy was suffering). Met my current partner (Ed) in July of 1980. We have been together ever since.It will be 26 years this coming July. It was not an easy road, after my diagnosis.

In 1985, we were having some problems, and I decided, around the fourth of July weekend in 1985, to party, and get wild for a few days.That weekend, changed my life. It was during this period of time, That I managed to get gonorrhea, along with HIV, by a person who was already infected, but refused to disclose to me.I can only blame myself... I was the one who chose, not to wear the condom. I really thought, I was smart enough to know better, but obviously ,that was not the case. I was diagnosed positive in October of 1985, a couple weeks after the death of Rock Hudson.

I was fortunate enough, to remain healthy, and free of meds, until 2003.( I should have started sooner though) I went into a state of denial, around 2001. By the time 2003, rolled around, I was pretty sick. I had gone through a year of a 30 pound weight drop. By the time I started meds in October of 2003 I had 16 t-cells, and a viral load over 500,000. with a recorded percentage at 3 %.

I was very lucky, I pulled through. I don't like using the word" lucky". I did many things throughout the years, after diagnosis, that I felt were necessary to keep myself healthy. I gave up up, a lot of bad habits, and started taking care of myself.

I found Aidsmeds.com, around November of 2003, and joined Aidsmeds.com in December of 03. I could not get enough information, which is why I am here today. I still continue to learn 20 years later. I am not a new-one to the virus, but I only have about 32 months of therapy experience.

So, here I am 20 plus years after I was diagnosed, still kicking, still smiling (sometimes it can be difficult though). But one thing I know for certain... I am not about to give up. Not yet !! I am still managing to work every day. It gets a little more difficult as time goes on, but I continue to push myself daily. I also know my limits. I don't expect miracles, I try to live realistically, and I remain very hopeful, and I try to keep a sense of humor.   

Well, there's a little info about me.   I wish everyone good health !



Ray


Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 12.5mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
Metoprolol tartrate 25mg



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

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

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

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

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


 In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started my first  HAART regimen  on October 24th,03.

 As of 6/4/14,  t-cells are at 423, Viral load <40

 Current % is at 13% 

  
 62 years young.

Offline Van Pelt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #24 on: June 02, 2006, 08:30:40 PM »
S'up...

After taking a few years leave of absence on this site, I have returned, under a new name. Slipping into a deep depression, I had to take a "break", and since I couldn't take a break from the disease itself, I had to get away from other things surrounding it - which is why I abandoned this site, as well as the "friends" I had made on here. I am back with hopes that this could once again be therapeutic for my mental health...and I need something more productive than "MySpace".

So - that was my re-introduction. There's not much more information I can disclose, being that I'm still in the closet about my status. I can say that I lived in NYC, until I moved to California last year - and there's a huge difference in the Insurance standings....The Department of Health is not as generous, nor is ADAP, and the process is taking much longer - I'm worried that I'll run out of meds before my Medi-Cal finally runs through.

I'm also in a sero-discordant relationship, which, of course, has its problems, adding to the problems of a "normal" relationship.

But, all in all, I'm just trying to find my place in life, yet, it's looking more discouraging every day...


Offline HIVworker

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #25 on: June 02, 2006, 08:43:06 PM »
I am HIVworker, also known as "R". I have not got HIV but work in a research lab on new therapies for HIV. While not actually living with HIV, I do live with HIV - if you know what I mean. I come to this forum to listen and learn what is required and to gain an insight into life with HIV. I also help out with the odd scientific question and see how you all are. I've been here for 3 years now and I've enjoyed all of it. I use to post only in the FEARS section, but don't do that much anymore.

R
NB. Any advice about HIV is given in addition to your own medical advice and not intended to replace it. You should never make clinical decisions based on what anyone says on the internet but rather check with your ID doctor first. Discussions from the internet are just that - Discussions. They may give you food for thought, but they should not direct you to do anything but fuel discussion.

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #26 on: June 02, 2006, 11:09:24 PM »
Glad to meet you all, you stars * * *  This is very informative.

Cliff- dont buy a BMW, real bikers will laugh at you, Yamaha is the way to go (sez the newt who misses his Yamaha).  Cliff: PS - DTPM was mashed, yr K-Swiss would've been trashed n people (tourists) were smoking SOMETHING NASTY on the podium n taking photos, some people didnt even realise there were gay men there -  4/10 + a lot of money.

- matt

(Now playing - Abba: Winner Takes it All, er no, Lou Reed : Perfect Day (10 sec fade into))
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline Robert

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #27 on: June 02, 2006, 11:24:32 PM »
Oh Matt, you're right...and wrong.

Norton is the way to go....

http://www.nortonmotorcycles.com/

robert

(who knows all about Zen and the Art of Motorcycle Maintenance.)
..........

Offline thirtysomething

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #28 on: June 02, 2006, 11:34:58 PM »
Hello Everyone,

My name is Raj, 31 yrs old Indian male. I was born and brought up in Bombay and have been living in US for past 6 years now. I was diagnosed of HIV 3 months ago and life has turned upside down since then. I have bachelor's degree in in Computer Science and I work in Information Technology field. I'm moving to Toronto next month (thank god, I managed to get a great job there move my move!), and I'm hoping to live for a long time! I also am looking to make new friends in Toronto.. anyone from there give me a holla!


Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #29 on: June 03, 2006, 12:08:00 AM »
At the risk ofgoing off-topic, Norton these days is a good brand of anti-virus software...Yamaha or a Kwak, Norton, an original ,for weddings, funerals and Sundays, yes, yes, but a "current" one no, rather have a Russian bike  8)

- matt

Now playing - Suede : Saturday Night (off ace albumn Coming Up)
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline fearless

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #30 on: June 03, 2006, 12:39:39 AM »
Hi there,

I'm Stephen. I'm 39 (nearly 40) and live in Sydney, Australia. I've lived here all my life and was born in the Salvation Army Hospital in Marrickville, a source of some angst when I was growing up as all my other siblings were born in another hospital. I have one brother and two sisters, all older. I had a younger sister who drowned tragically in our back yard swimming pool aged 22 months. I became the baby and was attached to my mother till I was 15 or so. I was a shy withdrawn child. A bed wetter, a chronic sleep walker and a cry baby.

At 15 I discovered god and religion in a big way and came out of my shell somewhat although I am still quite shy. I thought seriously about becoming a brother and spent time doing missionary work in South America in my early 20's. I visited San Francisco on my way home, discovered men and went to the other extreme.

AIDS took all my friends from the late 80's bar one, Grant who lives in the UK and is my rock. We manage to catch up every couple of years and are meeting up in Thailand in a few weeks time.

At 25 I fell in love with Bruce and we spent 9 1/2 years together. I will have been single for 5 years as of next weekend. (oh yeah, I have a crazy innate ability to remember numbers, dates, football scores. I know my telephone no from when I was a kid and the numbers from all my credit cards).
I became positive sometime around my 37 birthday.

I have a prediliction for seeking out violence and abuse. I have huge gambling debts. I often make poor choices. I am only able to keep my life on the straight and narrow by having a regimented lifestyle. Routines rule my daily life but I am constantly fighting my urges. I give in sometimes.

I enjoy travelling, gardening, swimming/snorkelling, Rugby League, my sister and her kids. I'm a bit of a loner and do lots of stuff by myself. I live with another guy, John, but I'd love to live by myself and will once I've paid some more debts off.

I'm a scientist by trade, majoring in fluvial geomorphology and botany, but I've worked in a dull but well paying public service job (media regulation) for nearly 16 years.

I've got myself in trouble more often than I care to remember. I have a good heart, I just stuff up sometimes.

Nice to meet you all.

Little Steve (cause I'm short)  ::)

ps. Matt. my mate in London used to sell his rohypnol (sp) to suede.  ;D


« Last Edit: June 03, 2006, 12:46:15 AM by fearless »
Be forgiving, be grateful, be optimistic

Offline cph9680

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #31 on: June 03, 2006, 12:58:43 AM »
Ok...

I'm Corey, I'm 25, I joined the other website almost 3 years ago, but kinda dropped off the face of the earth after a short while, but I'm back now.  I live in Denton, TX and attend the University of North Texas (if you're jazz afficianado you've probably heard of us).  I'm currently a sophmore majoring in journalism.  So that means I like to write, I love to read, I like music, hanging out with my friends and family, and doing any other fun things that present themselves.  Much of my life is pretty much devoted to school right now, because I'd like to make it to grad school sometime before I hit 80, and after that I'd either like to teach or write for a newspaper.  Aside from that I'd like to think I'm a pretty nice guy, I think I'm rather amusing and so do a lot of other people (or else they think I'm funny looking :) ), and I'm just a pretty normal average guy doing my own thing...

Offline Sky

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #32 on: June 03, 2006, 03:57:51 AM »
Hello gang!  My AM name is Sky (cuz I think the sky is one of the most beautiful things in the world, full of emotions just like us) but my real name is Charlie.  I live in Jacksonville, FL, which is about 3 hour north of Orlando.  I've been poz since July 2003, infected in February of the same year.

Currently I go to school full time to be a RN.  Finding out I had HIV was not only one of the worst things in my life, but also, one of the best.  It has made me get off my butt and start living life...so I went back to school to help people.  I live at home with my parents while in school and have a wonderful dog Lucy, who I treasure more than anything.  Since gay men can't have babies biologically with another man (boy would that be interesting) she's the next best thing I guess.

The last three years of my life have certainly been filled with their ups and downs.  However, thanx to the family here at AM, and the support of my friends here in Jacksonville, I have nothing but a "positive" outlook at the future.
Poz since 2003.

Offline DingoBoi

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #33 on: June 03, 2006, 04:14:33 AM »
um... i'm bailey... dingoboi to you most

i am 34, still think of myself as a twink, even tho i'm not phsyically....

All I ever wanted was to be in a long-term permanent relationship... obviously that didn't work out with my first b/f of 2.5 years.  Ever since then, and maybe even before... i've been trying to fuck my way to love.   

Yah, that hasn't worked. 

Anyways, since then, i've dated a few boys... even lived with one for 8 months.... till he split for his ex (conveniently after i got laid off from work and since I was supporting him basically)

Now I'm all alone except for my puppy London, who I cherish.   She's better than any asshole b/f.   

I'm a hopeless romantic... and think I might actually meet somebody who loves me... ok.. a bit of low self esteeem here... I'm not icky but i still find the concept of hiv+ and neg to be weird.     I'm not sure I can deal with that.... nor do I want to.

I'd rather be with somebody who understands if I feel tired... if I'm cranky and why.

Not to say I'll be a bitch, cuz i won't...

I guess I just want to be loved by somebody I find attractive.... is that too much to ask in this day and age?


Offline JohnOso

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #34 on: June 03, 2006, 06:01:13 AM »
Greetings to everybody!

My name is John and I'm a 42-ish gay male living in the San Francisco Bay Area.  But I'm not from here originally. 

Oh no...I was born a poor girl in Butcher Holler, Kentucky....NO WAIT!!  That was Loretta Lynn, another Kentucky gal...I get so confused these days.

Seriously folks, I WAS born in Louisville, Kentucky.  I'm pretty sure we were white trash, but we just didn't know it at the time.  My Mom, god love her, was the eternal optimist (she would take my auntie and I to the town dump and make us look for discarded cereal box tops so she could have multiple entries in that week's sweepstakes, while my father shot rats with the rifle).

Other than that, I'm pretty sure my two brothers and I had a normal, loving home -- if not slightly wacky sometimes, not unlike a John Waters film.

I went to school at Vanderbilt University and got a B.S. degree in Molecular Biology in 1985 with visions of medical school in my eyes, but being the undisciplined lad that I am, deep down I knew I really didn't want to do that.  I was also deeply closeted, just waiting for that Right Girl to come along and show me the error of my ways. 

I never found her. ;)

After slogging along in a few graduate school classes, I finally hit upon nursing school as the perfect combination of still being in the medical field, yet being able to punch the time clock and get the hell out and get on with my own life.  So I went to the University of Louisville and got ANOTHER B.S. in Nursing (at this point you're thinking, doesn't this bastard EVER want to leave school?).

During that time I had an extended dysfunctional fling with a guy who was in a LTR with another guy.  I had tested negative during nursing school in the early 90's (my best friend's mom accompanied me to the "Specialty Clinic" to get tested since I was too nervous to do it alone -- I still get a chuckle out of the mental image of this 50 year old woman chain-smoking while watching herpes films in the waiting room).

I could write an entire book on my relationship with "my" guy -- let's just say sexually it was electric (and unprotected!), but emotionally it was pretty devastating.  And while I was reciting the Florence Nightingale pledge at graduation (or whatever nurses pledge to do -- "I solemnly swear to clean assholes gently and lovingly, so help me God?"), I nearly collapsed since I had the "flu" so bad.

The next, and I mean that VERY next weekend, I loaded up the car and moved out West to Arizona, where I had a branch of my family.  I had to get away and start a new life in a new town.  I got my first nursing job in a ho-hum ICU, where I didn't learn a whole lot -- just enough to not kill anybody.  Bought my first black leather vest about this time.  I also met the love of my life here -- except I didn't know he was the love of my life.   Not just yet anyway.   

FINALLY, after many detours I made it to the Bay Area, where I found a hospital full of vagrants, miscreants, and loud-mouthed broads....my own little piece of ICU paradise that puts up with my extremely foul-mouthed, gay rights tirades with a loving pat on the head and a "that's-nice-Dearie" roll of the eyes.  And the love of my life?   He flew up here to meet me one day on a round-trip ticket back to Arizona (i tore up the return ticket -- he had to stay here after that).  He works at UC-Berkeley as an academic advisor and I don't know what I'd do without him.

So sweet..... so fun..... so Ally McGraw and Ryan O'Neal, right?

I'd like to place the blame squarely on Shasta's finest pot brownies that I was indulging in, but in reality, this was something going on for a long time that I refused to admit to myself.  First, the cough and fever...then not being able to get out of bed....then the extreme shortness of breath.   My doctor at "La Clinica" informed me I needed to get an HIV test, pronto.  By the time I got the test results back from Planned Parenthood, I had lost about 30 pounds in under a month.   (My greatest regret in life is having AIDS.  My second greatest regret is having to pay Planned Parenthood seventy-fucking bucks to tell me that I had AIDS).

As I write this, I feel pretty good about today.  The medicine seems to be working and life is okay (albeit 70 pounds lighter).   I'm worried about being around sick people 40 hours a week, but try to minimize risks when I can.  I can't tell my family yet -- they can do nothing for me at this point.  My friends know and that's enough for me right now.

If you've made it to the end, thanks for indulging me.  And take care of yourselves.
John

Offline sealforvr

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #35 on: June 03, 2006, 09:22:54 AM »
Hi all!

Lets see, where to begin. My name is Brock, I live in Oklahoma city and work as a graphic designer. I tested POZ in 1992, and from what they can figure I was infected in 84-85, so that makes me an official long term survivor.

I think a big part of that comes from having always take good care of myself, and I sobered up from booze not long after I was exposed. I was living in Texas at the time so I had access to excellent facilities in Dallas. In addition, my sobriety group had an HIV positive meeting to provide more support.

I've been really fortunate and not had to deal with any severe OI's or side effects aside from the fact that
my testosterone collapsed, but they said that could also have been genetic, or even a result of previous alcohol abuse. Therefore, I'm on Androgel.

 I do have belly problems which were partially resolved by changing meds. However I also was in an accident on dive trip and ruptured the central connective tissues from sternum to navel. It'sfinally causing me some discomfort so I'm looking into surgery to fix that in the coming year.

For fun I weightlift, gaden, cook, read, scuba dive, cycle. My handle is in Honor of my best hetero friend in Dallas, who was a Lt in the Navy SEALs.

I'm currently on Reyataz, Combivir, Viread, and Norvir. I'd like to get off the Norvir I've been on it a loong time.

I have a great nutritionist who also runs the local Max Muscle outlet. I wrote to the company's headquarters and told them how good he's been for my health, and they ended up doing a small piece about me a year ago. I got to meet Craig Titus, the bodybuilder, which was kinda creepy/cool, since Now less that a year later he's in jail accused of murdering his personal assistant.

I decided some time ago I needed to be in charge of my health, after watching too many people play the passive victim and end up dead. I know that sounds harsh, and I guess thats part of my anger about this disease. I wholly owned it back when everyone else was calling themselves victims and demanding to be fixed. I took the other route that sobriety taught me and did everything I could to make the best of things NOW.

So now here i am in the best shape of my life and getting better, a good job, single but not minding it too much, with plans and goals for the future. Pretty surprising for someone who was told to "go home and make your plans" in 1992.

regards
Brock

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Offline Cliff

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #36 on: June 03, 2006, 12:23:59 PM »
Cliff- dont buy a BMW, real bikers will laugh at you, Yamaha is the way to go (sez the newt who misses his Yamaha).
Not the actual bike for me (assuming I pass the Nazi license exam), just a pic of any old bike.

Glad to meet everyone!

Offline kcmetroman

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #37 on: June 03, 2006, 12:28:55 PM »
Real bikers ride one and only one......

Harley Davidson

Offline Trish

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #38 on: June 03, 2006, 12:33:50 PM »
Hey Cliff,

Nice topic... I think it's important to know who is behind the avatars and screen names....makes it more personal.

I don't have time right now to write my intro, I will be back sometime later to do so.  I'll try to keep it short, you know like 5 pages or so ;) ::)... I talk alot. :D

Have a great weekend everyone... :)

"People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is buit."  Eleanor Roosevelt

Offline Blixer

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #39 on: June 03, 2006, 02:28:44 PM »
Hi Cliff, this is a good idea!

I'm David and I was diagnosed Poz Jan 9, 2006.  I claim my residence as St. Louis, MO where I'm rehabbing a Victorian home.  I actually work in a small town in the Missouri Bootheel during the week so I have to rent a place there.  (The bootheel is the hangy down part).  Where I work is actually closer to Memphis, TN.  I'm in education and my entire career so far has been in the same district.   I've taught mathematics, science, and technology in grades 7-12 and now I'm in administration.  I enjoy what I do very much and it keeps me very very busy.  I work 12 months out of the year and never did understand that concept of teachers only working 9 months.  I also teach some college classes for William Woods University.  I'm well educated with advanced degrees in educational administration and educational leadership.  I was the first person in my family to get a college degree.  My goal was to complete a doctorate, which I did in 2000. 

I'm a single gay male.  I've lived in MO all of my life but I love to travel.  A couple of my favorite places are Santa Rosa Island near Pensacola, FL, and the Rocky Mountains near Denver.  I also love New Orleans.  We did lots of family vacations when I was growing up so I've been lucky enough to have been in most of the states.  I would like to travel overseas to Europe one day soon.  Closer to home, I'd love to go back to Toronto, Chicago, New York, Denver, Miami, and San Fancisco.  I've never been to Atlanta or DC but would love to check both of those places out. 

I ride my bicycle for exercise and enjoyment. It is my time to think and ponder.  My house in St. Louis is close to Tower Grove Park which is the second largest park in the city and where the gay pride events are held every June.

I enjoy eating out and like most kinds of food.  My favorite type of movie is comedy followed closely by good science fiction.  I am NOT a fan of Horror movies.  I enjoy the theatre but don't get to do that very often.  When I bought my house in St. Louis my plan was to enjoy some of the cultural things it had to offer, but over the past 4 years the house has taken most of my spare time and I haven't achieved that goal yet.

I started meds on April 10 and have had a difficult time getting some pain issues resolved.   I'll have to say the past two months have been miserable, but I've worked with my docs and it looks like we may be starting to see some of the pain issues resolved.  I wanted to get started on meds before there was serious damage to my immune system.  I have no idea when, where, or how I was infected.  I had a very low risk profile and hence didn't test regularly.  My diagnosis was a surprise and of course it has taken me a while to adapt to it.  I've found my family to be supportive although I've had to sort through most of this on my own and find most of my own resources.

At one point in my life I tried so hard to "fit in" that I got married.  I have two wonderful sons from that marriage.  One is currently attending college in Germany and the other one starts college this coming fall.  My ex and my children are aware of my status and very supportive.  Since that marriage I've not had a good track record with relationships but I'm hopeful that will change.  I dated a guy for 2 1/2 years that lived 300 miles away and I put 100,000 miles on my truck during that time.  I had a couple of other short "relationships", one with a guy that totally adored me, but he was fresh out of a marriage himself and in the "candy store mode" which I couldn't handle.  After that I had a short relationship in which I let the guy totally destroy my self esteem.  For three years after that I didn't even care to think about dating, and then, just when I thought I was ready again, I come up diagnosed poz.  That has opened up a whole knew realm of things to adapt do and a whole new set of problems.  I'm an easygoing person who just wants to get my life back and enjoy living again.  I think I'm headed in that direction.

So there you have the quick summary that may give you some insights into who I am.
David
Diagnosed 1/9/06
8/27/2007 CD4 598, 29%, VL 58 (72 wks)
11/19/2007 CD4 609, 30%, VL < 50 (84 wks)
2/11/2008 CD4 439, 27%, VL <50 (96 wks)
5/5/2008 CD4 535, 28%, VL <50 (108 wks)
10/20/2008 CD4 680, 28%, VL <50 (132 wks)
Changed to Atripla in 2012
1/14/2013 CD4 855, 35%, VL <40

Offline Dachshund

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #40 on: June 03, 2006, 02:49:30 PM »
Cliff, let me say terrific thread. Second, let me say how much I enjoy reading everyone's bio. They go so well with a morning cup of coffee.

Now about me. My name is Hal and I am a fifty-four year old gay man living with AIDS. Diagnosed in '92, but most likely converted (sounds so religious) sometime in the early '80's. I.V. drugs and sex were probably not a wise choice for a cute newly hatched homo in NYC in 1981. But, boy was it fun...I digress.

Just a little about now. I have learned I do much better with dogs than boyfriends. I have lived with Sam (my doxie) for two years and we have yet to have one jealous fight. Though I did catch the little rascal making eyes at a very fetching Shetland Sheepdog the other day in the park....men. Sam is a joy, and my life, and I truly believe he keeps me healthy. I know he makes me happy.

I am a Navy brat born in Western TN and raised in Northern CA...therein lies my schizophrenia. I was shipped back to Fruitvale, TN (yes there is such a place) every summer to my childless Aunt. Long story short it was all very Tennessee Williams and Truman Capote. It ended one summer when I caught Uncle J.E. humping the help and informed Aunt Dodie.

As I get older and enter my sixth decade I suddenly find myself extremely nostalgic. I can't remember my PIN number but there are things that have happened to me over the last six decades that I am remembering with frightening clarity. If you could indulge me I would like to mention a few in no particular order. My sister basiically died in my arms when I was nineteen and she was seventeen. I was the first to reach her when she collapsed from a heart attack. Too late to help her. Third row, three seats back in Mrs. Snipes sixth grade class when Kennedy died. Mrs. Snipes was an Austrian Jew who survived the concentration camps. I can still make out the tattoo on her forearm. She taught us wonderful Israeli folk dances. Eddie Bash the neighbor boy I first kissed. The Cuban Missile Crisis. My dad was stationed in South GA at the time. Campaigning for the Black Panther Party slate of candidates in Berkeley, CA. I had a crush on Huey Newton. Seeing Janis Joplin live at the Monterey Jazz Festival. Appearing twice on the television show "Family Feud", losing both times. My brother-in-law thought Zane Grey was a world famous author.....survey says "Shakespeare".

That is enough for now. Thank you for your patience.

Hal

Offline aztecan

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #41 on: June 03, 2006, 05:48:41 PM »
Great idea Cliff, there are many new people here and this will help everyone get to know each other.

OK, let's see. My name is Mark, I live in Aztec, New Mexico, USA. I add the USA part because there are many people who seem to think New Mexico is part of the nation of Mexico, such as the U.S. Navy, the International Olympic Committee, etc. But, I digress . . .

I was born in Albuquerque, where it was I came out, sort of, in 1975. I attended the University of New Mexico from  1975 - 1979, during which time I majored in Archaeology. It was during this time I worked with Dr. Frank Hibben, first as a excavator on several dig sites, then later as his field school and laboratory supervisor. I met some fun people as a result, including Georgia O'Keefe, who was, well, interesting.

In 1980, I moved to Los Angeles, where I spent five years. I met my ex there, we were together, more or less, for much of that time, although never monogamous. During this time, I worked as a fish monger in Beverly Hills. (don't ask.) My clientele were many of Hollywood's names at the time, Streisand, Rock Hudson, Liberace, Rod Stewart, Vincent Price, Lauren Bacall, Danny Kaye, Cher, Marla Gibbs, Pierce Brosnan, and many others.

I tested positive in 1985, went into complete denial and embarked on a multi-year regimen of self-destructive behavior.

In 1992, I confided my positive status to a good friend when I was three sheets to the wind. It was the first time I had ever disclosed I was positive. I didn't even admit it to myself. My friend convinced me to see a doctor.

The doctor, Sarah Allen, was a delight! When she asked me to list my sexual proclivities, she made me stop half-way because she needed more paper. I made her blush. I loved it and had much faith in her from that day forward.

It was she who, after delving into my medical history (did I mention I am compulsive about keeping records?) who came up with the theory I was initially infected in the summer of 1980. I won't go into the particulars, but it makes sense.

Regardless, I have been positive, officially, for 21 years now. In July 1995, Sarah began doing viral load tests along with the TC4 tests (now called CD4 tests). My viral load at the time was about 13,000. Not bad for having been positive for at least 10 years.

Then, the other shoe fell. My CD4s, which always yo-yoed between 900 and 600 dropped to the 400s and then began creeping lower. The viral load, still a new thing, began rising, finally topping out in the 60,000 range.

It was January 1996 when Sarah broached the subject of treatment. There were some new drugs just coming out that were very effective, she said. After much thought, discussion, crying and lamenting, I decided to give it a go. In those days, when your CD4s dropped below 500, they started talking treatment.

My first regimen, started in March 1996, was AZT, 3TC (Epivir) and Saquinovir. For those who remember Saquinovir. it was not fun. It had to be taken with a full, fat-filled meal plus an 8 ounce glass of grapefruit juice. It tuned me into a human Hindenburg, a big bag of gas ready to explode at any time with accompanying hershey squirts. NASTY!

In May, I told Sarah I couldn't deal with the Saquinovir. She switched me to another new drug, just recently approved and so new there was a waiting list for it - Crixivan.

The rest is history. My CD4s began to climb, my viral load went undetectable in July 1996 and has remained there ever since. I am still on the same regimen today - 10 years as of last month.
My last CD4 was 1,462.

I moved back to Albuquerque in 1985 to finish my degree. Long story short (I know, too late), I switched to a major in journalism. Received my degree in 1987, just two months shy of my 30th birthday.
Two weeks after graduation, I had my first job as a reporter at a paper in the small town of Clovis, New Mexico (famous for its neolithic Clovis points, for the archaeologists in our midst.)

I then took a job as a bureau chief in Farmington, New Mexico, with the Farmington Daily Times. I remained with that paper for 16 years, working my way up to City Editor, until Gannett bought out the paper and gave all of the existing management the boot.

I am now the rural case manager with New Mexico AIDS Services. My area covers 3 1/2 counties, about 10,000 square miles, a number of Indian tribes, nations and pueblos, and is challenging, frustrating and I really like it.

I have been single for many years. I am a passionate gardener and earned my Master Gardener certificate a few years ago. I have been a practicing pagan for many years.

The things I enjoy, other than gardening, are driving my Miata on winding, curving roads (being just south of Durango, Colo., makes it easy to do this), movies, especially musicals (OK, stop the snikering), theatre, concerts, travel, rehabilitating my 1915 hipped cottage, reading, hiking, swimming, and, of course, watching men.

That's pretty much it. Kinda boring, but, oh well.

HUGS,

Mark

Who loves hugs a lot too.

Yep, that's me in the photo.




[attachment deleted by admin]
« Last Edit: June 03, 2006, 06:57:44 PM by aztecan »
"May your life preach more loudly than your lips."
~ William Ellery Channing (Unitarian Minister)

Offline DingoBoi

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #42 on: June 03, 2006, 05:53:11 PM »
i do 401k administration for our gannett account :P  mean people they are.

Offline Tim

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #43 on: June 03, 2006, 07:41:32 PM »
Let’s see.  I’m a 60 y/o gay man, currently single, born, raised and lived most of my life in Dayton, Ohio.  I lived in Anchorage, Alaska for two years in the army and in San Diego for a year of college.  I graduated H.S. in 1963 but it didn’t graduate college until December, 2000 – 37 years later.  The joke was, was I going to get my degree or retire first?

I began employment at General Motors in January, 1965 working at first in the factory.  Three years later I moved into Industrial Engineering.  By 1975, I had moved into Data Processing.  In 1985, GM bought Ross Perot’s firm, EDS, and I was transferred to that company where my career finally soared.  I was retired early, at only 53, in 1999 where I finished my career as the EDS Contract Manager with a division of GM where I managed the IT service contract with them worth over $70,000,000 per year.  Those were the best years of my life, career wise.  (Great money too).

Altho the word “gay” hadn’t been penned yet, and I was far too young to understand the concepts of homosexual or even sexual, I had always known, as young as 4 or 5, that I was attracted to the bodies of other boys and took every opportunity to see and manually interact with other boys sexually.  Buy the time I was 11, I knew and began more serious and frequent activities with other boys.  I lost my virginity at 15, in 1960, and never looked back.

Now, back in those days, homosexuality was officially declared a mental disorder and illegal in most states.  There was no such thing as “dating” or relationships in those days.  Everything was slinky and sleazy, mostly one night stand types of things.  Thank gawd HIV wasn’t around then.  Without a doubt, with my promiscuity, I would have easily been infected way back then.

Now, although it was kept secret, my first long term relationship started during my junior year in H.S. with a younger boy.  It lasted nearly 6 years until he suddenly announced that he was moving to Calif and no longer interested in the gay world.  I was crushed. It took me nearly 7 years to deal with it.

It was then that I went to San Diego to re-enter college.  While there, I met an angel sent from heaven.  She was beautiful in every way, yet caused me a bit of confusion.  I was gay, yet I was totally attracted to her.  In 1975, we were married and she moved back to Ohio with me.  Three years later we had a son.  Unfortunately, by 1983, her latent alcoholism raged to the surface and she divorced me and moved back to Calif.  I was awarded full custody of my then 4 year old son.   I married my job and dedicated 100% of the rest of my life to being both mom and dad for my son, forsaking ALL other social life.  Essentially, I was virtually celibate for nearly 16 years.  My son earned an academic scholarship to college, went on to law school, and is now a barrister in England.  Talk about a proud papa.   ;D

In 1999 I met a young man, Ryan, on the internet and we hit it off immediately.   At first, it was a “net romance”, but soon, frequent visits occurred until we became constant companions.  In early 2002, I visited a friend in Toronto for a week.  While I was gone, my love went out clubbing one night, got drunk and went home with another.   He insisted on use of a condom as he bottomed, but the boy withdrew, took it off, unknown to Ryan, and re-entered, tearing Ryan’s rectum in the process.  Six weeks later, Ryan was diagnosed poz.  Later, the other boy admitted to knowing he was poz but lying to Ryan about it.

I stuck right with him and arranged all his medical visits and attended with him over the next year.  At first, he would refuse to have any sexual contact with me.  He felt he was toxic.  Eventually, we resumed intimate cuddling at night, oral, and finally intercourse with a condom, but he would insist I top to reduce risk.  He never fully accepted the safer sex concept.  In spite of his diagnosis, I formally proposed to him in August, 2002 and he excitedly accepted.  We began plans to hunt for "our" place to live.  In January, 2003, after both of us drank too much and shared a LONG, 3-1/2 hour lovemaking session, highly emotionally charged, I stupidly entered him bareback.  It scared the hell out of him that he had infected me.  I tested negative on three successive tests, 3 months apart.  But, he couldn’t deal with it.  He was convinced that if we stayed together he’d eventually infect me and he couldn’t live with that if he did.  So, unannounced and spontaneously, he suddenly just up and disappeared from me, protesting that he so didn't want to hurt me but he just couldn't stay with me, at least right now.  That was 3 years ago.  I haven’t seen him since.  There have been only 2 email exchanges and one phone call since.  I haven’t yet brought closure to that.  I still hurt.  HIV cost me the all time love of my life.

Since I had retired in 1999, I had plenty of time and money to spend with Ryan and spoil him rotten. Since he left, I have been unable to even think about looking for another relationship.  I have since become employed again to occupy my time and give me some reason to get up in the morning.

I have made many good and sincere friends on this forum, having been a member since Ryan’s diagnosis in May, 2002.   I would like to pay tribute to all of them by name, but I fear I would miss listing some.  You all know who you are – thank you each and every one of you.

There is only one name I will mention here.  He has become very dear to my heart for over a year now and I am sure that many of you feel similar.  You can’t help but like this boy.  On the old forum, he was Rawr, here he is Mouse, Jaser.   What a beautiful and brilliant and refreshing young man.  I have seen him ride the roller coaster over this past year and hopefully, with other friends here, have occasionally helped and given him hope for a bright future.  It’s there for his taking, IF he’ll find the determination to do what he needs to do to manage this disease and chase after his dreams.

No, I am not HIV positive.  But I have been living with its effect for over 4 years now.  I guess I could be considered collateral damage.





Tim S., not to be confused with Tim Horn

Offline fearless

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #44 on: June 03, 2006, 07:50:02 PM »
Mark,
that is so true re New Mexico. Just before I went to Mexico in 2004, two mates bought me a pressie - a travel book on New Mexico. I just grinned and graciously accepted.

Little Steve
Be forgiving, be grateful, be optimistic

Offline David_CA

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #45 on: June 03, 2006, 09:56:01 PM »
Well, I can't say that there's really much interesting to know about me, but I'll do what I can.

My name is David and I'm a 40 year old gay male.  I found out my poz status in March of this year.  My partner of 7 years also found out he's poz.  Prior to meeting him, I was married for almost 9 years and lived with my ex for 5 before that. She, my partner, and I are all good friends.  My partner and I have a lot of the same interests and are basically best friends.  Most all of our other really good friends are straight.  I work for the State in IT (information technology) and have a wonderful, low stress job with great benefits, so I'm very lucky in this respect.  We have 5 cats and too many projects and hobbies to know what to do with.  I graduated high school in 1984, moved to my current location to attend college, and have never moved.  I'd like to move out of the city, as it's growing at an alarming rate, and move to a more rural setting.  I seem to be becoming more of a recluse since finding out I'm HIV+. 

Our main fun activity is camping.  We don't do tents - I can't handle heat - and have a pop-up camper.  We generally go to a gay / clothing optional campground.  I'm converting a bus to an RV.  It's not a school bus, but is an ex-Trailways bus.  I started this project last May and have a ways to go.  The discovery of being  HIV+ made the whole month of March a blur and I didn't accomplish much of anything.  My goal is to get it converted and use it at the campground.  I also plan to travel a bit at some point in the near future and see an RV as the ideal way to do this.  It'll pretty much be a second home that happens to be drivable.  We try to get to the campground monthly, as it keeps me sane!  We've met the nicest people there and always have a great time.  We used to fight a bit and I didn't see our relationship lasting all that long.  Since we started camping, we've gotten along so much better.  This just shows me that couples (us, at least) need to get away, relax, and do things that they both truly enjoy.  The stress of day-to-day living is enough to get on anybody's nerves.  We'd both like to retire now to the campground and really enjoy life, but, unfortunately, don't get the luxury of retiring at 40! ;)  We also have a boat and two jet skis, all of which we'll be selling.  Anybody want to make a deal?  Since we've taken up camping, we don't use these toys anymore and sure could use the money for other things.  I enjoy music, especially Sirius sat. radio.  I've always loved music, and it's been a big part of my life since early on.  Sat. radio was sort of like rediscovering so much music all over again.  I really like channels 36 (dance) and 22 (80's alternative).  It's almost like being in college again but without all the studying and classes!  We work on the house a lot and play on our computers constantly.  A Wi-Fi equipped notebook and broadband internet are more important to me than TV or telephone these days.

Finding out I'm HIV+ has been a really strange thing for me.  It's causing me a great deal of anxiety and stress, but has had some good points.  It's the most humbling thing I've ever had to deal with.  It's the first situation that I've ever encountered that I really can't change; I can only modify my behavior to deal with it.  It's made me appreciate a lot of things in life and slow down some.  I've confided my being HIV+ to about four straight friends, a couple of prior sex partners, and my ex.  It's brought me a lot closer to these friends.  I haven't told anybody in my family yet, which is really bothering me.  I don't know if telling my mom is the right thing to do or if I want to do it to make myself feel better.  I know she can handle it, but I'll feel like such a shit for upsetting her so much.  On the other hand, I don't like lying and I know something will come up eventually that'll necessitate my telling her.  I'm debating on whether to talk to a counselor as a couple of friends have suggested.  I had my last Dr. appointment yesterday.  My Dr. wants me to try Prozac to help with the anxiety.  I'm sure a lot of these feelings will be resolved in time. 

I'd also like to say that the AidsMeds forums have helped me more than I can say.  Some days, just reading what others go through helps me figure out what's going on and gives me strength to deal with my own small problems.  All the 'welcome' and 'hello' replies to my first post brought more tears than anything else since finding out I'm poz.  Thanks everybody.  The lessons have given me more useful information than any other source I've found.

Well, theres my pretty uninteresting life.  It may seem kinda dull, but I wouldn't trade it (HIV and all) for anybody else's.  Every part of my life, from being a young child, to the teenage years, to the partying college days, to the partying post-college days, to the partying current days have been a blast.  The first 40 years have been great; if the next years are anywhere as good, I'll continue to be a lucky man! 

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 AlanBama

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #46 on: June 03, 2006, 11:06:32 PM »
I've enjoyed reading this thread, it's great to get to know some of you better.

It's hard for an old dinosaur like me to begin an introduction, so I'm going to pick up with some excerpts from an article I was featured in, back in October 1996, in the Atlanta Journal-Constitution.

"Fragile Hope, Sober Realities" - a look at three Atlantans who've tried the new AIDS drugs.   HIV-positive since 1987, Alan has had a host of devastating opportunisitic infections which attack people with weak immune systems.   He's had a deadly form of pneumonia, a liver infection, bacterial infections, a 35 pound weight loss and molluscum contagiosum, a devastating skin condition that caused disfiguring bumps and scars all over his face and neck.  Too sick to work, in March 1995 Alan left his job as an auditor for the State Dept. of Human Resources.  "It got to a point where I couldn't walk, and I had to be helped to go to the bathroom.   I couldn't take a bath by myself".   When he started taking Ritonavir, a new class of drugs called protease inhibitors, his face cleared up, his strength came back, he gained weight and his body started producing disease fighting T-cells.  For the first time in years, he started to make plans; he started to hope.  "I had a wheelchair, and two types of walking canes.  They're all in the closet now.   I went to the beach this summer and to visit my family in Alabama, things I haven't been able to do in over two years."
His pill organizer contains some 280 pills each week, for AIDS, to stop infections, for depression, for sleep. But now HIV has mutated and become resistant to the drugs. Once HIV is resistant to one of them, if is often resistant to all of them.  He's taking three other AIDS drugs now plus nevirapine, a new class of drugs similar to AZT, which became available in June.  "Maybe the Nevirapine will work, he says...I just don't know."
------------------------------------------------
Fast forward to ten years later.   That article ended on a depressing, ominous note of uncertainty.   Well, I'm proud to say the Nevirapine DID work!  I'm still alive and kicking, and doing extremely well.   I was an "end-stage" AIDS patient in 1994-95, so what does that make me now???  What comes after "end-stage"?  How about ON stage!   It's time for me to get on with my life, and that's what I'm trying to do.   It's a struggle some days, but compared to those dark days it is a whole different ballgame.   When I look back and read that article, it's like a bad dream, and surely something that didn't happen to ME.  But it did, I survived it, and through determination and sheer bulldog obstinancy, I'm still swinging.

No one wants to do an article on me now, I'm "old news".   Hey, that's fine.  I'm just happy to be here.   I hope to get to know all of you better in the weeks and months ahead.   I plan for AMG 06 to be a major celebration of my life, and all our lives as survivors.

With love (and continuity)

Alan

In loving memory of Debbie Thomas-Bryan, one of the other two people featured with me in that 1996 article.

« Last Edit: June 03, 2006, 11:38:10 PM by AlanBama »
"Remember my sentimental friend that a heart is not judged by how much you love, but by how much you are loved by others." - The Wizard of Oz

Offline swede_dish

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #47 on: June 03, 2006, 11:30:16 PM »
WARNING! SOUTH AFRICAN "FREE"-MALE SET LOOSE IN NORTHERN MICHIGAN! MAY BE STIRR CRAZY!
Ah...where to start?

Name: Jennifer Alice  - often going by Alice when meeting new company..simply out of a need for change and an ever snipping identity crisis. Formally known as Lotusintheconcrete
Age: 20..21 in 3 months :)
 Location: Traverse City, Michigan (Cherry Capital of the World...horray?) I was born and raised in Durban, South Africa.
 Sign: Libra. What can I say? I like to keep things balanced....too bad I can't do the same for my checkbook!


I have been positive since I was 18. Well, two days after my 18th birthday. Of course, with my luck the first time I had sex...I couldn't just get pregnant like my sister (a direct quote from my mother) but I had to get HIV. Oh well...such are tribulations we must face in our long journeys. And yes. They will be LONG!  :)

Many things have happened in the past few years that have shapped and will continue to shape me as the adult I hope to become. My family has "dissowned" me and alienated me..(which has been subdued thanks to some good people in my family's community), I have been "outed" in a very public manner, I have been used and dumped, my brother has passed away, and my health has gone up and down like a yo-yo.

Even after all this, one thing remains.

I have love.

Wither it be from my family (the remaining part that still speaks to me), my group of lovely friends, from all of you and mostly...from myself. It's amazing how much faith in yourself can help you physically AND emotionally.


ANYWAY. Enough with that. I sound like an episode of Dr. Phil  ;D


Here are some of my <3 's
1. Art - I want to be an art teacher (elementary only!) and I am constantly painting, drawing, scultping, ect..
2. Music - David Bowie and Queen are my two favorites but I am a lover of all musical talent. A good album can change the face of a day. Freddie Mercury looks like my dad. He is the best frontman/showman of the past millenium (in my opinion). RIP Mercury.
3. My friends - They get me through things even my family can't.  They are the most accepting and caring people I know. I wouldn't be alive right now without them.
4. My family - I know they should be before my friends, but in a way...my friends are my family. I cannot ignore the fact that some members of my family and and allways will be a huge support system for me.



thats all i can think of right now!


_jenn..






"I married a German. Every night I dress up as Poland and he invades me. "
-Bette Midler

Offline cjc

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #48 on: June 03, 2006, 11:48:28 PM »
Hi I am Cristy, known as cjc on both forums. I am a single 33 yo white ,heterosexual female living with my family in north Carolina. I tested pos in September of 2004. My CD4 at the time was 385. went on meds in Nov(sustiva and truvada) 2005. By then CD4 had fallen below 200. Now CD4 is 250 ,Val is  470. So i take my meds like I'm supposed to so i will be here a long time. I work at a restaurant part-time and spend time with my 3 YO son the rest of the time. I like cats , old cars, books ,food,kids, fishing. Very few people know my status but those I have told have been very supportive. I am just making it day by day trying to make sure i will be here for my son for a long time. Coming to the forum really helps me. ya'll are a wonderful group of people.     Cristy
« Last Edit: June 04, 2006, 12:01:46 AM by cjc »

Offline heartforyou

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  • I must be a survivor in many ways...
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #49 on: June 04, 2006, 03:24:15 AM »
This is a wonderful thread. Thnx.

I have a strong feeling that not only more facepics are being posted, but that there is a general trend of more openness on the Forums. And I loudly and enthusiastically applaude this.

Every single story brings a different feeling to my heart.

But they all have one thing in common : a lot of IQ and emotional intelligence.

And right from the hear. I like that.

Hermie
Diagnosed in 1987 and still kicking
Viread, Kivexa (Epzicom),Viramune once daily

Happiness is the freedom of breathing fresh air every day.

Offline gerry

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #50 on: June 04, 2006, 04:04:25 AM »
:D
« Last Edit: February 14, 2007, 11:19:34 PM by gerry »

Offline kcmetroman

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #51 on: June 04, 2006, 10:38:00 AM »
Wow cliff, you are tops. 

Guess it is my turn in the barrel

I was born in Spokane Washington on February 13th, 1960.  I grew up in the burbs of Trentwood.  Pretty much owned the block so to speak, but I was a problem child.  By the time I was 15 I had pretty much tried all of the fashionable drugs of the 70’s.  The only thing that probably kept me out of the big hotel was the fact that I was a good athlete.  Favors came my way, and I was invincible.  By the time I was in my later high school years I had knuckled down, but then realized that the school holidays I was known for early, had vanquished a scholarship opportunity at Stanford.  I went to a smaller college, played football and loved life and everyone in it.  One day at practice I zigged and my knee zagged, ending my career and the vision of the SI cover.  I became fodder for the “coulda woulda’s” at the end of the bar. 

When I was 20 I moved back to Seattle and opted to follow the American rage and obtain that thing called an education.  After graduating from college, I worked in engineering for a large telecommunications company.  Being such a youngster among my peers, I got the juicy jobs like Kotzebue Alaska, or Challise Idaho. Boy, did I miss seeing an actual streetlight.  In many towns I was idolized for the mere fact that I had a full set of teeth.

Over the next 6 years I traveled extensively, had been in all 50 states and a few countries.  I was living hard and playing harder.  At 25 I got married and accepted a position at corporate in Orlando, FL.  Time to settle down?  NEVER!  I had become a marketing director, suit and all, and traveled even more, but this time in first class and to places that did indeed have streetlights.  I was empowered by a suit and an extremely lucrative expense account, and was not afraid to use it.  In 1990, I was transferred to Kansas City, and given the workload of 4 people that were laid off, but still had that nice expense account. My lucrative life resulted in 3 DUI’s over a 3-year period following.  At 37, I was divorced and pretty much taken to the cleaners, which I guess I deserved.

In 1993 I won an award for Marketeer of the Year.  Really thought I was hot shit so I explored the job market and accepted a job with another company. With it came a substantial salary increase and a huge bonus.  Exactly what Mr. Party head needed? To encapsulate things, the market went to shit and my comfort zones began to shrink. This era for me, I believe rooted the advent of AIDS related dementia.

Being single, I explored ALL avenues of sexuality, living with disregard to life and health.  I still lived behind the cloak of invincibility, and maintained the party ideology until 2003 when I was overthrown by the series of OI’s leading up to my AIDS diagnosis. 

In retrospect, I look back and many things I would have done differently, but I gaze forward with the aerial view and a new perspective on life.  I currently subsist a disability check, which fortunately for me is livable thanks to a lucrative career preceding.

I met my soul mate Trish here on the Forums, and these days I feel pretty damn good about myself, and life. I guess I have finally grown up. 

Maybe….

edited to add that my three wonderful children are the biggest accomplishment in my life.


« Last Edit: June 04, 2006, 11:23:08 AM by kcmetroman »

Offline Cliff

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #52 on: June 04, 2006, 10:49:19 AM »
Wow cliff, you are tops.
...only about 80% of the time, John.  :-*

Seriously, no credit due me for this.  Credit belongs to Matt, et al. 

- Cliff

Offline rnbowpixi

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #53 on: June 04, 2006, 11:17:56 AM »
Hi ya'll. Name is Rob. Livin in san diego.  just moved back after living in the est for a while (off and on about 5-6 years with a detour back to san diego once for a year) cook for a living, 26ish (age) poz since march 10 05 just started meds may 27 load 110000, cd4 378 28% norvir reyataz truvada. partner negative, great support group of friends and family over here though i can always use another friend or three ^_^, ecltectic sometimes weird, sometimes hyper, typical gemini kind of person here. raised navy brat and sometimes it shows ( hard headed stubborn etc.) please say hello, im always around in some form.  -rnbowpixi@yahoo.com-

Offline skeebo1969

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #54 on: June 04, 2006, 12:03:02 PM »
Cliff,

Great idea !!


My name is ", formerly known as ".  I came to these forums in mid              , after being diagnosed HIV positive.

I can attest these forums helped pull me through a very rough time!!

I was born in  .  My mother hurriedly left shortly after I was born to escape from my real father, who was abusive.  I've been in   ever since.  In school I was the quintessential underachiever.   19....  I used for 9 months successfully, although it took me two years to stay clean !  I went to college for three years and produced an extended high school diploma, better known as an  !!  I quit in my after my third year, like everything else, while trying to get my bachelors.  I had found a good managerial job and thought this to be more important than school ! I was so proud of the fact that at 24 I was making $ 40,000 a year.  This after a divorce from from my first wife of three years.   My first wife really showed me just how evil someone can be....  some one who tells you they love you that is!!   There was some beauty from it though, we have a beautiful  together who is now 15.  

Two years after my first marriage, I met my second wife.  We were married for  years.  It was during this time that my depression had started.  We lost a son and that seemed to be a catalyst of things to come.  Six months after the passing of my son my mother took ill.  In March 2000 she was diagnosed with cancer and was gone in October of that year.  My wife and I separated during this time.  We did eventually get back together and have a beautiful little girl who now is 4.  In  we divorced and in I decided to    I did so with no desire for protection and paid for it dearly.... obviously.  

I am thankful though still.....

I have faced my depression since being diagnosed.  I have found new love since being diagnosed.  

I have seen a doctor 4 times since being diagnosed....  hell, before my diagnosis I had not seen a doctor 4 times my entire life!!

I am in the process of making some huge changes in my life right now, something I would have never done before my diagnosis... taking a risk that is!

Lately, I have been absent from the forums...  I have had my reasons....  I lost a certain confort level, which may be an issue within myself.  

I am working at trying to look at things differently...

My doctor is about to start me on a regime...  My luck!!  Barely a year after my infection my numbers are bad enough to call for it.  Yes, I am sure its only been a year because I tested negative in  during a physical for a life insurance policy.

I may have strayed here.....  

I am  formerly know as 
« Last Edit: February 17, 2007, 07:09:05 AM by skeebo1969 »
I despise the song Love is in the Air, you should too.

Offline Trish

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #55 on: June 04, 2006, 02:07:32 PM »
My name is Patricia, but I prefer to be called "Trish."  I am 42 years old and was born & raised in Brooklyn, NY.  I lived in NY my entire life until I went to KC this past March to meet the man of my dreams -- KCmetroman (John) from these forums.  I fell in love with him and have been here ever since.  We plan to marry in the future sometime.  No date set yet.

I have 3 older brothers (Billy, Jimmy & Raymond).  Growing up with 3 brothers was tough.  They liked to toss me around and play rough.  I guess that's where I get my gumption from, I had to stand up for myself many, many times.  My father passed away in Feb. 1999 from lung cancer.  He was a retired firefighter with the FDNY.  My 2 oldest bros have retired from the fire dept. also shortly after 9/11.  They both had 23 years on the department.  My brother Ray (who I am closest to in age -- one year difference) works in Manhattan and has come a very long way struggling with a learning disability his whole life.  I learned from an early age to protect those who were different.  I was always defending my brother from the bullies in the neighborhood who made fun of him because he was mentally challenged.  He has a learning disability and the kids did not like him because of it.  I always defended him, and am proud of my brother today for all the accomplishments he has made in a world that treated him as something "not normal."  I guess the activism part of me came into play at a very young age.  I always fight for the underdog.  It's my nature.

My mother & father divorced when I was 15.  That was a very trying time for the entire family.  It tore us apart....

I have one niece (Cynthia) who is 24 years old and I love her dearly.  She reminds me of myself when I was her age and it scares the hell out of me.  I saw her leading a very destructive life, just the way I did... I ended up in drug rehab, and so far, she hasn't gotten there... only time will tell.  I also have a 4 year old nephew, My Godson, James.  He's the cutest little guy, smart as a whip and just loves to play with trucks and trains.  Recently, we've been told he may have a speech impediment and needs to go to speech therapy.  I miss my family, but there only a phone call away.

I grew up in a small community called Gerritsen Beach located in Brooklyn, NY.  It's residents are mostly white, Catholic, Irish.  Most men are civil servants (police, firemen, etc.).  It's a great neighborhood to grow up in until the teen years, when drugs & alcohol become a part of your life.  It's easy to get stuck in that neighborhood.  I was stuck for many years.  I went to Catholic school my entire 12 years.  I would have gone to college and on to law school, but somehow that got all messed up.  I was a drug addict/alcoholic.  My dreams didn't mean a thing to me back then.  I graduated high school in 1982.

After graduating H.S., my dad allowed me to play around all summer before heading off to Manhattan to find a job.  I had a blast that last summer!  In September of '82 I headed into the big city -- job hunting.  After 25 or so interviews, I finally landed a job with a Mitsubishi Bank located on the 85th floor of the World Trade Center.  It was the first time I had ever been in that building, and I was amazed at the enormity of it.  I remember on windy days, hearing the building creak as it swayed back & forth in the wind.  I swear that sometimes I could feel the building move.  For the 2 years I worked for that bank, I always had this horrible image of a plane hitting it and toppling it to the ground.  When 9/11 happened, I wanted to die.  But that's another story entirely.

In 1985, I found myself in drug rehab.  While there I met a great guy, who later became my husband, Larry, in Feb. 1988.  Larry had been an IV drug user.  We were married in St. Patrick's Cathedral on 5th Ave. in Manhattan and the reception took place in the World Trade Center on the 43rd floor.  It was one of the most memorable days of my life... it was a day that I felt like a princess.  Larry was HIV-pos when we married.  We had already been having intercourse when he started to feel "not" himself.  He was ill.  He went to the doctor sometime in late 1986 and was diagnosed with ARC, which soon was AIDS.  When he told me his diagnosis, I was shocked and extremely scared.  I cut off sex for fear of being infected.  And if we did have sex, we always used a condom.  We knew Larry would die, we just didn't know when.   Larry started treatment with AZT immediately.  He also was on Pentamidine for PCP and had a slew of other OI's.  He was in & out of the hospital more times than I care to remember.  He lost alot of weight and looked very much like death was knocking on his door.  After a month or so, he bounced back and gained some weight.  He was active again in sports and lived his life to the fullest.  I married him because I loved him and wanted to make him happy.  I gave him happiness to the very end.  Larry died in our apartment on October 28, 1989 -- he was sitting in his favorite reclining chair.  I buried him on Halloween.

I tested the very next day after his burial.  I found out I was positive sometime in late November 1989.  I had been working for a law firm as a legal secretary on Rector St. in downtown Manhattan when I got the news.  I called the doctor's office to find out my results.  I was told that I needed to come to the office to get my results.  There really was no need for that, I knew what is was.  I began to shiver and cry sitting at my desk.  I felt numb.  I was in shock.  My friend & co-worker, Joann, happened to walk by and saw me crying.  She asked what was wrong and I told her through all my tears and gasps.  She told me to go home, and she would cover for me.  It was the last time I saw her.  I never went back to that job.  I couldn't... they already knew my husband died of AIDS, I didn't want them to know that I was sick too.  I was afraid they would have fired me.

I left the office, and walked around Manhattan in a daze.  I was crying uncontrollably.  I didn't know where to go.  I felt so alone.  People stopped me and asked if I was okay -- I didn't respond, I just kept walking.  I think I finally got to the doctor's office 3 hours later.  I was in shock.  The doctor wanted to start me on AZT... I told him "No F**king Way.  That shit killed Larry.  I won't do it."  I left his office, only to return a week later for another test.  I wanted to know for sure.  Well, that test was positive also.  I left the doctor's office angry and upset.  I went to the bar and got rip-roarin' drunk, and pretty much got drunk everyday after that.  My life spinned out of control and I began doing drugs again.  I was a mess and in complete denial.  The stigma took a HUGE hold of me, and I couldn't shake it.  My denial and life in a lie lasted about 11 years.  It wasn't until April 2000 that I went on meds and disclosed to all of my closest friends.  My family had known from the beginning and were very supportive, however, it was a subject we never really spoke about.

From 1991 to the beginning of this year, I was in a relationship with a guy who is negative.  I had known him from my neighborhood for many, many years.  He accepted me.  He didn't reject me when I told him I was positive and that was all that mattered to me.  I lived with this guy for 14 years, allowing him to financially support me and keep a roof over my head.  We were very good friends and although he loved me, I was not in love with him.  I stayed with him out of fear, and it was convenient and comfortable.  It took me a very long time to admit that I was only with him because he accepted me, it really had nothing to do with love.  And I feel bad for having done so.

I left him this February and I now reside in Kansas City, MO with John.  I found my soulmate.  I found true love and I hope to one day marry John, and live a happy life with him.  I also hope to one day publish my memoirs.  I enjoy writing and have been writing since I was a child, but never took it seriously --- now I do.  I will write a book.  I also enjoy cooking, biking, and Rock & Roll music mostly, but I am versatile.  I love to meet new people and enjoy doing new things.  I like to do things "spur of the moment."  I love to laugh and have a good time.  I was into sports as a kid, a real tomboy (had to be, I had 3 bros) & I played basketball, softball, volleyball throughout my school years -- I was on varsity in high school in all 3 fields...  I don't do any of these things today because of bad knees, but sure wish I could.  I also enjoy fishing and even worked on a fishing boat one summer as a cook back in 1998 or so.  I've had many jobs over the years, various types of positions, too many to recall.  I could never keep a job for too long because of depression, etc. 

Today, I am physically healthy and in a much better place as far as my emotional & mental states go.  I have my ups & downs, but I do the best I can.  I have learned alot about myself since 1989 and see the world so much clearer these days.  My outlook on life is no longer doom & gloom.  I actually wake up nowadays thinking about the things I want to accomplish.  I think of my goals and set them, whereas from 1989 to 2000, I didn't dream of anything.  I have changed, and I like what I see.

***************
I have to add this note -- just something I need to get off my chest.

Back in March of this year, I started a thread similar to this about introductions, suggesting that it would be a good idea to introduce ourselves thereby allowing people the chance to get to know the person behind the avatar (I geared it more toward Newcomers because of an instance that happened), but somehow, or for whatever reasons, I was trashed for having done so.  A few of you did not like what I tried to propose, and I find it peculiar that now I see a couple of you have responded here with no problem, and I just don't get it.  The "few" who gave me grief back in March were very willing to discredit me in my thread... Oh well, I'm a big girl, I'll get over it.  No big deal.  I just had to get that off my chest.

**********************

Just one more thing -- I have to say that if it were not for my Mom, I never would be where I am today.  She has supported me in every way possible and I couldn't have made it without her love.  My mom is the best!  I love her dearly, and miss her smiling face.  But, I will see her in August when John & I fly to NY, and then drive to Montreal.

See you all there... ;D

Have a great day everyone.

All the best,

Trish :) :-*
« Last Edit: June 04, 2006, 02:13:31 PM by Trish »
"People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is buit."  Eleanor Roosevelt

Offline Trish

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #56 on: June 04, 2006, 02:10:35 PM »
OOPS!!!  Sorry..
« Last Edit: June 04, 2006, 02:12:48 PM by Trish »
"People grow through experience if they meet life honestly and courageously. This is how character is buit."  Eleanor Roosevelt

Offline Mouse

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #57 on: June 04, 2006, 02:24:54 PM »
It's strange, cause there isn't anybody boring here.

Just saying, you know?

Anyway, I'm Jaser (but it seems everyone has a nickname for me, haha) and I'm 15. 16 on October 31st (wink wink, nudge nudge) and I was born in 1990 in NY. I have a sister named Megan, who's less than 3 years older than me, she just graduated highschool this year and she still doesn't know what she's gonna do tomorrow (believe me, if you know her, it's not surprising). I'll be graduating in 2008. I just ended my sophomore year (10th grade). I guess I'm a pretty good student - I get mostly straight As (except when I get Bs. ><;.). Hokays, but, yeah.

Most of you know I'm really big into animals. I like taking care of things. I feel better when my animals feel better. To date I have four rats (Wednesday, Mystery, Bailey, Fiver), two mice (Oscar Wilde, Morgan), two fish (Cheese, Mushy), three cats (Zachary Binx, Tiamat, Chester) three newts (Newt 1, Newt 2, Newt 3 - hehe), two turtles (Henny, Penny). Yeah, it's a zoo, but I love all of them insanely much.

I like art and I LOVE to write. Even though I think both are pointless. :P. Annnnnd I love movies and music. LOVE music. Something a lot of people don't know is I can play drums. I've played since I was like 7 years old. First I started taking lessons in school but, they were demanding and I didn't like being forced (actually, I don't like being forced in art or writing either, which explains some grrr-ness at school). So, I quit there, but practiced on my own, and my dad tried to get me to take lessons elsewhere but screw that and I just bought some books and taught myself. I also tried to learn guitar, but didn't get far. I dunno why. Frustrated, I guess.

I've recently warmed up to math, too. :P

I really want to go to school to be a vet, but, if not I guess I have music and art and writing to fall back on. My family wants me to stay in the area but I want to move somewhere. I haven't picked any school yet, but I want to move to NY. I'm not sure why. I guess to get away from here, but not too far away.

I joined here over a year ago, I was infected in November 2004, diagnosed in January 2005, whatever. It's just all statistics to me now and to be honest I don't think it's even worth a paragraph about me.

People tell me I have strange taste in music for my age. But mostly cause I don't like like... freaking Green Day or whatever. I like -
The Misfits, The Chameleons, The Spinto Band, The Magnetic Fields, the Circle Jerks, the Adolescents, Nick Cave, Smashing Pumpkins, The Unicorns, Modest Mouse, Rasputina.

So, whateva. =P

Offline Jeff64

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #58 on: June 04, 2006, 05:57:23 PM »
Hi all,
I am Jeff and I have been her about a year and a half.

My numbers are fine and I have had no complaints. I think I am a LTNP as my numbers seem to stay the same. My Dr. is proud of me.

Other than actually knowing I am HIV poz is the only thing that is bothering me at this time.

Jeff

PS I am also positive for the vacirella virus. Egads!

Offline pozniceguy

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  • Niceguy Dallas
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #59 on: June 04, 2006, 06:20:05 PM »
My name is Nick , I live in Rockwall a small town just east of Dallas Texas. I have been POZ since 1994...probably infected around 1983 when I was traveling extensively in Asia and had contacts with many people . I have a family , wife ,three grown children and several grandchildren.. Retired from Air Force ( 21 yrs)  worked for large Electronics company for 14 years until 1994...Never was a "sick " person. had several rounds of bad "colds" them became seriously ill ,admitted to the hospital discovered  PCP  and HIV status.  stats at time   cd=4  vl =500,000 +     Wife is HIV- 
I have been treated by a great Dr here in Dallas, I was one of the first to receive  Crixivan when it became available.  Have been on Crixivan, Epivir, and Zerit plus other meds  for the whole time since diagnosed.  I have been  "undetectable" since 1997  cd stays around 400
 I am currently being treated for stage 5 Lipodystrophy . I am in a company sponsored trial for Sculptra. I have had three sessions  and have at least 4 more to go. Results are starting to show. My Dermatology Dr wants me to try to get off the Zerit..( it is one of the prime contributors to Lypo..)  and that is how I discovered this site.
Matt gave me two possible alternatives to the Zerit.. Thanks again Matt  I have researched both and will discuss with my Dr this week.  I know that his usual reply  to change is " if it ain't broke ..don't fix it"  but I think the Lypo situation is broke enough to consider some change....

On a personal basis..I am retired..run a web site with my wife and son..work out regularly with a personal trainer at Larry North Fitness Center. travel a little..visit with grandkids..and just enjoy living.
remember the good times...honor the past but don't live there
Le stelle la notte sono grandie luminose, nel cuore profondo del Texas

Online J.R.E.

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  • Joined Dec-2003 Living positive, since 1985.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #60 on: June 04, 2006, 06:59:48 PM »
Good Evening Everyone,

 I also am enjoying reading everyone's introduction. I would like to suggest something though. And it may have already been brought up.


For those that have changed their names/ Login , on the new forums,would you all be able to put your former name/handle, in you signature line. It will be truly helpful to some of us that have Cobweds, between our ears   :-* until we can re familiarize....Thanks !



I wish everyone the best-------Ray

« Last Edit: June 04, 2006, 07:01:19 PM by J.R.E. »
Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 12.5mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
Metoprolol tartrate 25mg



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

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

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

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

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


 In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started my first  HAART regimen  on October 24th,03.

 As of 6/4/14,  t-cells are at 423, Viral load <40

 Current % is at 13% 

  
 62 years young.

Offline Robert

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #61 on: June 04, 2006, 08:13:43 PM »
Hey Folks.

This particular thread is getting a little long for us dial-up types.  If you don't mind, Herman (HEARTFORYOU) started
PART II


If you could post your life stories, that would be great.

thanks
robert
..........

Offline emeraldize

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #62 on: June 07, 2006, 12:47:00 AM »
Perhaps it will be an easier story to tell
If I stick to the surface, not draw from the well
My life took a hard left eight, twenty, zero three
I decided hiv would not get the better of me

I hope to assist, indirectly, our successors
as I'm deemed, thus far, a long-term non-progressor
I'm enrolled in all manner of studies thus far
Some long distance and others I reach by car

Some are studies of blood, others of my brain
It's the best I can do, so I don't refrain
I look at it as one way to be less afraid
and to make of poz lemons some sweet lemonade

What else shall I add to define myself?
I'm straight, 52, and enjoying good health
There's no one with whom I share such delight,
But optimist I am and consider it a non-plight

I forgot to include that I'm also female
Just in case there's someone reading this tale
Who might be a soulmate, perhaps a new friend
One never knows what is round the next bend

Aside from my work, which is full-time plus more
I love the woods, gardening and my cat, I adore
Music enthralls me, Impressionists' art, too
And I create my own, most mediums will do

I use all sorts of approaches to my new status
Yoga, NET, how I wish it all was gratus!
I am training soon in the art of Feng Shui
With the intent of giving consults away

I believe, as I've read that Feng Shui affects health
And I want to give it away to those without wealth
With a priority given to positive sisters and brothers
And second to that, needy, indigent others

There's only one other important thing to share
That captures my attention beyond compare
I'm trying to adopt an older child, who like us
Needs acceptance and love she can trust

I predict that someday, I'll be jumping out
As so many of us share, we're itchin' to shout
I abhor the entanglements caused by poz stigma
That's culminating in a 25-year-old enigma

Communication as is fostered in this special site
Is reflective of the type of necessary light
Required to illuminate, warm and inspire
Those affected and those yet to acquire

Although I don't stop by to visit too often
I hope this profile will help to soften
And explain the nature of my words in print
Perhaps add perspective, at the very least, a hint

Known before and now as Emeraldize

Online J.R.E.

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  • Joined Dec-2003 Living positive, since 1985.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #63 on: June 13, 2006, 08:34:17 AM »
I know this thread was getting long, but I wanted to bump it up, as it was slipping away. This for the benefit of those that haven't seen it. For others, I would suggest you introduce yourself in the other thread ,because this one is quite long for the dial -up users.


Ray
« Last Edit: June 13, 2006, 08:35:59 AM by J.R.E. »
Current Meds ; Viramune, Epzicom, 40mg of simvastatin, 12.5mg of Hydrochlorothiazide.
Metoprolol tartrate 25mg



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

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

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

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

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


 In October of 2003, My t-cell count was 16, Viral load was over 500,000, Percentage at that time was 5%. I started my first  HAART regimen  on October 24th,03.

 As of 6/4/14,  t-cells are at 423, Viral load <40

 Current % is at 13% 

  
 62 years young.

Offline joeniceguy2005

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!Joey from sudbury ont can.HI!
« Reply #64 on: June 14, 2006, 08:39:20 PM »
well my name is james but my friends call me joe or joey.I have been pos now for 5 years.I just wanted to take this opertunity to welcome all those that will be attending the internationalhiv-aids conference 2006 to be held in toronto in august(13-18) it is too bad that the US will NOT allow anyone that has tested +  for hiv into the us,its a shame really,but such is life eh?In canada we accept peoples for who they are,not what they have or have not got!The Us is steadily losing many allies with this war against a totaly innocent peoples,but this is another war that i wont get into(too late )anyways ,a tip of the hat,to that beautifull woman with balls bigger then most men have .Its refreshing to see really,as alot of people get fatigued with allways hearing about negative stuff happening all the time,so ,again congrats to a real heroine and good luck on the today show,go girl go!

Offline poet

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  • Poet living and working in Central Maine
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #65 on: November 06, 2006, 07:11:45 PM »
Who knew about this thread?  Months later, Win(throp) Smith posts: born April 1955 in Westchester Cty. New York.  Raised in Rye, New York.  Graduated from Millbrook School 1973 (see opening section of The World According To Garp which was used).  Graduated from Dickinson College July 1976.  English major and minor.  Lot's of years in retail (bookstores especially).  Stamford CT to NYC in 1987.  Acute retroviral syndrome May 1984 (watch Longtime Companion for a sense of the times).  Confirmed diagnosis over the phone at work in 1986.  Meds delayed until the cocktail arrived, thankfully.  Board of PWAC.  Drop-in facilitator.  AIDS home attendant.  Bodyworker (unlicensed masseur) from 1989 (after my first NYC apartment was gutted in a fire during a mafia trial) until 2003.  I lived from the East Village to the West Village to Chelsea to (my most brilliant move) the South Street Seaport 3 weeks after 9/11.  Two years of that, my first live-in partner leaving for a job with Dillard's (and me with too much space at too much cost) and I arrive, deciding purely based on the novels of William (Bill) Mann in P-town a/k/a Provincetown, MA.  When my work with someone who had cerebral palsy ended (he opted for live-in help) I moved to Hyannis where I currently live.  I now work weekends at a home for four mentally challenged guys aged 20-50.  Freed of the small town knowing everything about everyone in P-town, I have hooked up bigtime with poz.com, especially the forums.  And while legally single, I have a dachshund who would feel otherwise.
Winthrop Smith has published three collections of poetry: Ghetto: From The First Five; The Weigh-In: Collected Poems; Skin Check: New York Poems.  The last was published in December 2006.  He has a work-in-progress underway titled Starting Positions.

Offline Grinch

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #66 on: November 06, 2006, 07:41:37 PM »

Cliff- dont buy a BMW, real bikers will laugh at you, Yamaha is the way to go (sez the newt who misses his Yamaha).
- matt



Don't listen to him!
Grinch (Who has a BMW and a Yamaha)

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #67 on: November 07, 2006, 02:12:28 AM »
Changed my mind after a ride on a Beemer.  Now want a BMW 600 Dakar

PS - can the intro thread get stickied?

- matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline Queen Tokelove

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  • Smokey the Smurf
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #68 on: November 07, 2006, 04:06:53 AM »
Hello Everyone~~

My name is Michelle, 37 yrs of age, and currently resides in Pennsylvania. I have traveled to a few places but not nearly as many as those here. I'm a Capricorn born on 1-12-69. I'm pretty much a laid back type. I will add snippets from my life because if I wrote everything, I would probably put many to sleep. The least I can hope is that it's a good read, here it goes.....


The Infection

I became infected from an ex when I lived in Miami. I actually did not find out from him but a co/worker who knew someone that was a nurse in a corrections facility. Actually me and the co-worker was having a fling. He told me one day at work. Of course I broke down and cried. I then went home and asked the ex was this true, he admitted it was. I don't know if it was my love for him or stupidity but I still wanted to be with him. But his feelings weren't the same, he left for a crackhead who was pregnant by him. It was a major blow to my self-esteem but I picked up the pieces and started to get tested. This was in 92, I left Miami in 97 and went back home. In 97, I don't remember the exact month, I just know it wasn't winter. I had gone to the health clinic for the usual std checkup because at the time, I did not have any doctors. For some reason, I never went back for the results, I just knew. I wouldn't return calls or anything, so they did one better they showed up at my door.

The family

At the time when they showed up at the door, I was staying with my oldest sister, so she heard the results. She suggested that we, plus my other sister, go out for some drinks and that I tell her. I don't know what I was thinking, because me and my other sister never really did get along. For some reason, she felt that our mother treated her "lighter" children better than her darker ones, I really never knew because this was when I was very young and I don't remember much of my childhood at all. So, she made it a point of making my life hell whenever she could by either making stories up about me or trying to fuck my boyfriends. But I thought maybe in this situation she would be a little more mature about it, but of course I was wrong. She made it her life's mission to tell anyone who would listen that I was poz. My family has always been dysfunctional but I'm quite sure everyone knows. Then my oldest sister decided to jump on the bandwagon and spread the news too as well as a niece.

Love Life

I did not become poz until 97, 5 years after finding out my ex in Miami was poz. I have often thought about the people I was intimate with in that timeframe and wonders if I had infected them unknowingly. I know that sounds crazy because I was tested during those times and I was neg, so I know it can't be but I still feel guilty. My track record with relationships sucked to say the least. I got married in 2001, but I never told my husband. My sisters did that for me as well. He was ok with it after we talked about it at first then he became abusive. For a few I thought I deserved it, but eventually ended up leaving him and moving into a shelter.

After being single for a few years, I met this young guy and got in a relationship with him for 4 years. In the beginning I did not tell him I was poz. I eventually did and he was willing to stick by me but then we broke up for other reasons. Since then I had a few encounters with this one guy but has since put an end to it, he did not know my status either. But the sex was protected. It's not that I don't want to tell anyone but am afraid of the rejection since that was all that I seem to get when I try to come clean. I have since been celebate for almost a year if not already. I am bad with dates. I try to be upbeat about it all but am very afraid that I will probably die alone... :'(

What I like

I love wrestling, I watch them all WWE and TNA. I can tell you just about any wrestler's finishing move. I'm also into anime and cartoons. I watch a lot of Cartoon Network. I also enjoy playing games on my playstation2, but I prefer RPG's such as Final Fantasy and Resident Evil. I finally beat RE4. I also watch a lot of tv but prefers shows like all the CSI's, Law and Order, and sci-fi. I miss Charmed, dammit!

Religious side

I am an eclectic Pagan. I try to incorporate a lot of paths into my life and it has changed my life in many ways.
I was once in a coven but did not feel comfortable so I decided to take the solitary path. I often make the joke I wonder if my mother knew something I didn't because she named me after a vampire, Angelique from Dark Shadows. Thus my name Queen Akasha from the Anne Rice book/movie Queen of the Damned and it was also how I felt when I discovered I was poz.

In closing, I will quote Lestat, "Was it a good read?"
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline Cliff

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #69 on: November 07, 2006, 03:33:52 PM »
Welcome Queen of the not-so-damned.  Yes, it was a good read.  Welcome.

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #70 on: November 07, 2006, 03:44:36 PM »
Hey hello, pleasure & privilege to read about your life.  "I love wrestling".  So do I, but don;t think my kind would get on NBC  ;)

- matt

Now playing: Pink, Centrefold
« Last Edit: November 07, 2006, 04:06:49 PM by newt »
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline Queen Tokelove

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #71 on: November 07, 2006, 03:57:32 PM »
Thanks, Cliff...
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline penguin

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #72 on: November 07, 2006, 04:15:20 PM »
big hello, to everyone new & not so new  :)

my turn, to mark another year...

I am Kate. At the moment, I live in SW14, a sort of less hardcore, outer bit of London. Greener, more trees, a few more parking spaces.

I grew up, well, everywhere, bit nomadic, minus the camels & Bedouin tents. As a result, I have little sense of national identity, & struggle frequently with itchy feet - a kind of restlessness that has me longing for red earth & huge skies. At such times, I either board a plane or retreat, to tepee in garden.

I am a mental health professional. Actually, social worker, but don’t often use that title (is, to some, dirty word, like another way of saying "I don’t keep my promises") I also have various bits of paper which say I know something about youth offending, palliative care, and early psychosocial interventions in psychosis. I don’t attach much importance to bits of paper, less still to letters after names.

I own a full set of star trek micro machines, and a collection of marvel comics (xmen , my fave)

I love music, & am rarely without my 30gb ipod - it connects me with most of the events & people in my life. Click here,  if you're interested in what i'm listening to.

There is a 13 year old, living in North London, who shares half my dna. I hope that if she ever decides to get in touch, I will not be too much of a disappointment.

I read - obscure medical journals (perfusionist, anyone?) new statesman, the independent, and, er, gardener's world. Favourite writers include atwood, dickens, h.s.thompson, g.g.marquez,…etc, etc.

The earlier part of my life took me to some of the darkest places a person can go. These days, I tend to stay in the sunshine, & not let much bother me. This, & a decade + of hiv/hcv,  has taught me that things change, evolve, and that ain’t a bad thing, ever - you just have to be willing to move with them. Also taught me that I am bloody stubborn, resilient, & capable of overcoming just about anything I want to.

I like stripy jumpers, retro trainers, writing letters, allotments, raku pottery, street markets, rocks, rooibos, mountains, oceans, big hugs, kites, fringe theatre, second chances, leaves, wind chimes, laughing. I’ve never been fashionable, apart from maybe once, accidentally,c.1985. Don't believe internet changes the world, but the people using it, they do.

I dislike, & avoid, shallow, dishonest people, or those who talk just for the sake of making noise. Apart from the obvious one to determine their views on marmite, my most important question for new friends is: what are you for? - if you can’t answer that, with certainty, then you prob don’t fit this jigsaw.

One of my favourite paintings is Picasso's Guernica. I believe that art is not meant to be flat, static, observed - art, real art, is multisensory, participatory, powerful in its emotional impact. Strangely, most galleries' security guards don't share this view…

I recently had my heart broken, but am realising that this, this wasn't such a disaster, and possibly the best thing that could have happened. She was, & had been for too long, rather cramping my style…

So, birthday this weekend, & the next 12 months, more so than usual, is going to be about me. Plans: recovery from recent ills, hunt for new job, new home, some adventures & travel to far flung places, and maybe a girl who is much too young for me. I will pass on the motorbike though, for now I think  :)

(although, yes, 650 dakar is wicked , ditto 1200 gs - both, sadly, bit too heavy for me)

kate

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #73 on: November 07, 2006, 04:33:40 PM »
W|E|L|C|O|M|E  ::)

If you were straight and I was too, I'd propose

- matt

Now playing: queer boy sex scene disco
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline Cliff

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #74 on: November 07, 2006, 05:09:14 PM »
Welcome kate.  Glad the heart is on the rebound and hopefully the brain as well (ala stroke). 

Happy Birthday....and here's to you finding that special youngin on upper Richmond.

Offline Queen Tokelove

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #75 on: November 07, 2006, 06:25:00 PM »
Hi Kate,

It's nice getting to know you and I did enjoy reading your Intro. So, you're a Trekkie too, not sure if you get Tvland where you are but Star Trek will be having a marathon on November 17. I'm on it and you know this man, I hope they show some of my favorite episodes which are:

1. Trouble with Tribbles, remembers the name of this episode for some reason.

2. The episode where Kirk kisses Uhura, which I was told was the first interracial kiss.

3. The episode with Trelane on it, guy kinda reminded me of Liberace.

4. The one with the Greek God, I think it was suppose to be Apollo, who had a thing for one Kirk's crew members.

Man there are so many, too many to name. I use to collect the Xmen comic books when I was younger. Out of all the Xmen movies, I think the last one was the best one. The second one was ok because they brought in Kurt but to me they made Storm seem weak compared to the comics.

I hope to chat with you in the future and learn more about you...
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline wellington

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  • Don't sweat the little things.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #76 on: November 07, 2006, 06:45:06 PM »
At this risk of making this lengthening thread even longer - with sincere apologies to the dial-up masses - I'll chime in too. Having been diagnosed in February 2006, and finding this site within the weeks thereafter, I feel it's about time I said something more directly personal, though you can likely glean things from the postings I've made largely in this part of the forum.

Wellington. Former Brit who emigrated with the family to Ontario, Canada in 1970, where I finally became a citizen some 34 years later - I still retain my UK citizenship so technically, I'm a duallie. I take my time putting down roots; I guess I'm just comfortable enough in my own skin not to need a significant foundation.

HIV hasn't been all that hard to take. I became ill late in 2005 and by the time the medical gurus could finally make a diagnosis, I was knocking at death's door having lost about 20% of my body mass. Fortunately, I've had a really great partner - who's neg - for the last 16+ years, standing by me through it all, for better or worse, and all that. We're not legally married, despite it's legality in Canada now, but maybe one day he'll discover importance in symbolism. Seriously, he's a great guy and I love him to bits. I wouldn't have to think twice to lay my life down for him, which really only once became a possibility while searching for a post-theatre taxi in the burbs of Chicago.

We've travelled quite a bit. He's seen a bit more of the world than have I but I've seen more of Canada. We're both pushing 40's now and thinking about retirement. The Caribbean is high on the list of areas in which to play out our final decades.

I'm an avid cook, and patron of fine dining. also big into champagne and wine - Bordeaux me silly. Extravagant tastse for a simple country boy, but I'm worth it. My partner and I took a gourmet cooking course some years ago and it was one of the best things we've ever done. Still reaping the benefits some 15 years later. The bartending course and wine appreciation come close 2nd and 3rd.

As for sports, I try to find time. Played volleyball and basketball in high school. Surprised they let me become Canadian for not having played hockey. Also enjoy football, and the kind of wrestling that I suppose Matt (newt) is into. Though I raise an eyebrow at his taste in bikes - Ducati 918 baby. I'm way too lean for a Harley; sporty and fast is my deal. A few years back, I learned to scuba dive and took my open water in Turks & Caicos. Try to dive every year, though the last one was a bust owing to illness. I'll make up for it this year with a hopeful trip to Bonaire. I also like to cycle, skate, and ski. with a little more post-illness conditioning, I'll be back to doing one legged pushups. Pix of my quads at 11.

Despite the sports, though not an avid reader, I have a pension for sci-fi film and television - trek, TNG, Voyager, B5, Dr Who since the 60's - as well as online games - a long time patron of the Zone as well as other franchises such as WoW, AC, NWN, EQ and Horizons. I think I've spent more time in front of a computer - even now - than anyone ever should in their lifetime. Someone invent something cybernetic so I can just blink and get my fix, puhlease. Speaking of fix, I have a decided weakness for a very large capuccino in the morning - french vanilla. Yummeh.

I went to university in the mid-80's at the request of my father who really wanted me to be the next Albert Einstein, but I think I'm a little too non-hetero to coordinate a comensurate wardrobe for that dude's vocation. I was good at calculus and algebra but bailed in my 3rd year of studies to work in information technology, where I spent the next 15 years - government, then private industry as an analyst and software developer. When I got tired of that in the summer of '03, I decided to go back to school for something completely different.

For the last few years, I've been a full-time university student and have been enjoying it immensely. The wake up at noon and work to midnite deal is really how I'm built. I hate agendas and back to back meetings. Taking it as it comes and letting each eye blink reveal a new scene is far more enjoyable. I also find it gratifying to fit in with early 20-somethings at school. Thank you Aveda for such great skin care over the years.

Having read the auto-bios in this thread, I found it interesting how similar veins pop right out. Having been posting now for several months, it's been great to read what people have contributed here and realize that we share a deep connection to humanity in addition to our ailment. It's good to know you.

If I've left anything out, that isn't already plastered over YouTube, just PM ;)

Offline Queen Tokelove

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #77 on: November 07, 2006, 07:19:36 PM »
Wellington~~

Just curious because we seem to like the same sci fi shows, what do you think of Battlestar Galactica, the remake. I was truly disappointed in the new Dr. Who prefers the original. But I enjoyed reading your Intro, we must talk more about Star Trek. Between you liking Star Trek and Newt liking wrestling, I almost fell in love but had to remember that you both are gay. Damn why are the good ones either gay or taken?

(Believes she is going to die a bitter old bitch, ugh)
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline wellington

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  • Don't sweat the little things.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #78 on: November 07, 2006, 10:47:51 PM »
OR taken? I'm both  8)

Offline Queen Tokelove

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #79 on: November 07, 2006, 10:53:56 PM »
You're one of the lucky ones, Wellington....
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline srmn98

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #80 on: November 08, 2006, 12:07:17 PM »
Guess it is my turn. I am not "out" with my status so it is difficult to know how much to say, but reading how open all of your posts are helps.

I'm a 30 year old heterosexual female. I found out about my status about a month ago. I suspect that my exboyfriend knowingly infected me, although I am working through this. I am single but have wonderful friends and family. While most of them do not know my status, their love still helps tremendously. The friends I have told help me become stronger every day.

I am commercial photographer. I enjoy my profession very much. In fact, I am currently brainstorming ideas on how to use photography to tell a story about HIV that has not been told before. I will probably start a discussion about this soon, and maybe start travelling to meet some of you and create some portraits. Somehow, I want to reach people and help them understand.

Looking forward to hearing more of your stories,

s






Offline Catman

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    • Who is the Catman?
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #81 on: November 08, 2006, 03:22:24 PM »
Wow! What a variety of stories we have here. Some I have spoken to and others who's names I've never seen. I like this chemistry. Click on ol' planet earth to see my intro link if you wish. This thread is way too long to post it here. Nice reading about all of you. I really like it when people post their picture next to their forum name. It's good to see who you are emailing with.
« Last Edit: November 13, 2006, 06:17:40 PM by Catman »
Catman

Meow to the birds
Meow to the tree's
Meow to the end
of this dreadful disease...

Offline Just John

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #82 on: November 08, 2006, 07:17:37 PM »
I know that I’ve done this before on the old forum but when I tried to find it so that I could include a link to it I couldn’t – so – here goes again. I really hate this, kinda makes me feel like I’m about to confess something that I shouldn’t, part of my general insecurity I guess; but then I agree that it’s also nicer having exchanges with people that you know a little bit about so:------

I’m John, a 46 year old gay guy living about 12 miles north of Manchester, England with my BF of nearly 20 years, he’s HIV negative. I was diagnosed in October 2003 and started meds in Nov 2003, Viread, Epivir and Viramune once a day and doing well, currently VL<40, CD4 601, 25%, next test in 5 days. I’m currently smiling as I check my diary for 2003, “make a will; write letters to my family; buy a funeral plan; put my business affairs in order, find a buyer”; how little did I know!! ::)

I am fairly close to my family, Mum and three Sisters but they don’t know of my diagnosis, yet. My younger Brother died of AIDS in 1993 and I know that even now my Mother still grieves for him so I really don’t want to go public if I can help it. Yeah I know that times have changed – but! Anyhow I discussed it with my BF and that’s what we decided. I also feel really stupid about catching this disease when, of all people, I should have known better.

I have my own little mini-coach business and despite (or because of?) my efforts we’re not doing too well at the moment, just something else to add to the general current depression I guess but at least I think it’s only a temporary situation and could be a lot worse.

I enjoy long walks in the countryside with the dog, the BF too sometimes. I like to socialise with friends and family whenever possible although I’m not exactly a party animal, I have a lot of acquaintances but only one true friend left. I enjoy DIY (I’m also a qualified carpenter), reading, music of all descriptions, cooking and drinking, I quit smoking over 8 years ago except for some occasional herbal stuff.

And I love this site because it’s the only place where I feel comfortable getting information and generally dealing with HIV and related issues not to mention some of the other unrelated stuff ;D.

And that’s it – for now ;).
Some cause happiness wherever they go; others, whenever they go.

Offline FiercenBed

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #83 on: November 08, 2006, 10:54:26 PM »
i think this site needs a chat program!

Offline wellington

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  • Don't sweat the little things.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #84 on: November 09, 2006, 12:33:04 AM »
A chat room would be a policing nightmare, though I wish it could be possible. It sure would be nice if the profiles database had room for the autobiographical information expressed in this thread, however.

Offline MSPspud

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  • Joined Mar 2005 - Formerly UofMurbs
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #85 on: November 09, 2006, 10:05:41 AM »
Perhaps this post should be stickied?

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #86 on: November 11, 2006, 03:26:46 AM »
...bump... and what MSP said - matt
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline ScottPhxAZ

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #87 on: November 12, 2006, 08:37:16 PM »
Hi All, my name is Scott, 45yo, 5-10, 195, GWM, living in Phoenix, Arizona (35 years). I have been "married" to the most wonderful man in the world for almost 15 years (he's HIV-).

I've been teaching high school (math, computers) for the past 5 years after 15 years doing computer software after 10 years in the restaurant business. I'm saving law school for retirement.

I was infected at approximately 05:47:23 PDT on Sunday, July 16, 2006, (hey, but who's keeping track?) at the Mirage in Palm Springs, California (highly recommended BTW). All because I couldn't sleep and decided to hit the jacuzzi for a bit. The truly unfortunate part of it is that the sex wasn't even that good.  

A week later I got flu-like symptoms but I seemed to weather through it OK. I did urgent care and the doctor, did lots of tests but nothing found, nothing diagnosed. (Things I was tested for included Rocky Mountain Spotted Fever, Lyme's, and West Nile. Those sounded kinda ominous and I began to worry, but since the HIV test was negative I didn't worry too much.)

I seemed to get a bit better; however, within days I ended up being dragged into the emergency room my husband (the most wonderful man in the world) because I ended up bed-ridden not eating or drinking anything. More tests. Nothing found. No diagnosis. (Hey, but kool - I've lost 25 pounds!) School started on Monday, August 7. 5 periods with 35 kids each. I barely made it through the first day. I spent my lunch hour in the corner of the teacher work room staring at a blank wall. I went home and went to bed knowing I would never set foot in my classroom again. At this point I actually was feeling better as far as the flu-like stuff goes but was physically and mentally exhausted. At this point I started having anxiety attacks at the thought of returning to the classroom. (I'm the stereotypical strong-type who can handle anything at anytime with complete confidence, so anxiety is bit of a stretch for me.)

I went to my doctor again, he gave me an open-ended work release plus some Selexa to "even me out". Oh yeah, he said, there's one more test I'd like to do just to completely rule out HIV called a viral load. So they drew some more blood, he jetted off to the World AIDS Conference, and I went home to ponder unemployment, changing careers (again), and perhaps being homeless. I also thought back to this guy in Palm Springs......

The Monday morning after the doc returned his nurse was on the phone telling me he wanted to see me. When? I asked. She said just to come and he would see me when I got there. (This from a doctor who's usually booked solid weeks in advance.)

OOOOOOOOOOOOOooooooooooooooooooohhhhhhhh ssssshhhhiiiiiiiiiiiiitttttttttttttTTTTT!

My stats are at the bottom. Still too early to tell. Still waiting for more test results. I never did set foot back in my classroom. I got another job as math teachers are pretty popular. But instead of teaching in a classroom I now teach at a virtual high school. All my contact with students is over the phone and Internet. Very relaxed. Quiet. Low stress. Perfect for a newly poz guy.

Anyways, I like ice cream and mexican food. Coke over Pepsi. Classical, jazz, and classic rock. Books and the Internet. We both drive Hyundais (Me Sonata, him Elantra. Very impressed with them.) . We live in a 3-bedroom house in central Phoenix. Our dog/daughter died last year after 16 wonderful, happy years of faithful service. Our family is very supportive of us as a couple and me as HIV+. We prefer warm weather beach vacations over anything else - been to Puerto Vallarta five times, the Virgin Islands four times, plus three Caribbean cruises (we are truly blessed). Palm Springs is a traditional summer getaway though I got more than I bargained for this last time around. Dad is a retired Presbyterian minister (and part-time atheist). Mom is a retired nurse. Three older brothers. One is a Rush Limbaugh nut (but harmless otherwise). Me and hubby are both clean and sober 14+ years, one day at a time.

Did I mention I'm married to the most wonderful man in the whole world? Well, I am.

Scott

P.S. For the first time in a long time I am proud to be from Arizona. We became the first state to reject an anti-gay marriage constitutional ammendment!!!!! (And we're a big red state!)
« Last Edit: November 12, 2006, 09:38:14 PM by ScottPhxAZ »
07/06 infected; K103N mutation (excludes non-nukes)
Date  CD4/%      VL
08/06 867/23%  1,000,000+
09/06 646/20%     434,000
10/06 948/24%   1,710,000
02/07 851/23%      439,000
04/07 CD4: 701/23%  VL:    184,000
06/07 CD4: 697/         VL:    202,000
08/07 CD4: 565/19%  VL:    184,000
08/07 Started Truvada+Viracept
11/07 CD4: 769/27%  VL:          181
02/08 CD4: 998/23%  VL:         <48
05/08 CD4: 809/26%  VL:         <48
06/08 Stopped meds while traveling
09/08 CD4: 793/31%  VL:         <48
12/08 CD4: 739/21%  VL:     27,700
02/09 CD4: 60
05/09 CD4: 508/22%  VL:     19,400
08/09 CD4: 358/22%  VL:     62,600
10/09 CD4: 548/26%  VL:         <48
01/10 CD4: 468/28%  VL:         <48
05/10 CD4: 475/34%  VL:         <48

Offline Longislander

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #88 on: November 12, 2006, 09:22:08 PM »
Hi Scott, see you've been around a bit since August, but welcome. Sounds like an awesome job, and an awesome husband!
infected 10/05 diagnosed 12-05
2/06   379/57000                    6/07 372/30500 25%   4/09 640/U/32% 
5/06   ?? /37000                     8/07 491/55000/24%    9/09 913/U/39%
8/06   349/9500 25%              11/07 515/68000/24     2/10 845/U/38%
9/06   507/16,000 30% !          2/08  516/116k/22%    7/10 906/80/39%
12/06 398/29000 26%             Start Atripla 3/08
3/07   402/80,000 29%            4/08  485/undet!/27
4/07   507/35,000 25%            7/08 625/UD/34%
                                                 11/08 684/U/36%

Offline Javicho

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #89 on: November 13, 2006, 02:08:50 PM »
Hello everyone, my name is Javier and I live in Virginia I was diagnosed HIV in October 2001. I went to have my physical as routine and they ask me if I wanted to have the test done. I'm never been sick in my life so I said yes whit no fear. The day after they call me and said that I needed to be at the doctor;s office in person for my results, at that moment I said to my self someting is wrong. The Doctor was so cold when she gave me the results. I did not know what to do, I went to see my brother's and I just stay there for couple of hours then went back home, for 2 months I just cry and try to find some courage to be able to talk to someone about my status; finally I went to the Wilkman Walker Clinic to have a group therapy,it did help me alot I met other people like me w/problems and questions.

Just about 3 years ago I did talked to my brother's about my status since then they been very supported. Mu older brother is to one who gave me this website. to be honest the only thing that i check was the late news and medications, never check this forum before till last week I try to sign in but the system was telling me that my e-mail was not good, I send an e-amil to someone in this web and they were able to help me out. I'm very happy now that I can talked to people like you guys that allways help each other w/different topics.

I don't know what else to say at this moment just that I'm happy to be able to participated in this forum.

Offline bobik

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #90 on: November 13, 2006, 03:56:31 PM »
I'm Coen, that comes from Conrad. I am dutch. I got here 1 year ago.

My infection must have been in 1987. I am in a non-monogamous relationship with my lover, we're together for 21 years now. The reason for not being monogamous is that our sexual needs differ quit a lot but we both can't imagine living without each other. I will marry him next march.

I come from a family with three kids, me and my brothers. My father was a minister in the protestant church. He was very easy going about both my and my brother's homosexuality. My father has been very ill this year, but now he is doing incredibly well. The support I got in that period from AM-members was great. At the moment there are big worries about my oldest brother's health. He has had cancer as a child, and now suffers from the damage of the radiationtherapy he had by then. His body is that of an old man.

In 1984 I started my study to become a registered nurse. In 1989 I started to work in aidscare. By then I didn't know I was infected myself. It was very strange to work in a hospital and take care of people I knew, even people I have had sex with. The worlds of my private life and my work mingled more and more. When I turned out to have AIDS in 1993, there was no option to change jobs anymore so I remained working there. It was very complicated. I was confronted with what I thought was my own future. People knew me from the bars, and knew that I have aids. So, even more, private situations and work became mixed up. People who knew me as their counsellor and nurse wanted to talk to me in the bars. People in the hospital tried to seduce me now and then. Even on holiday in San Francisco in a bar I met a patient of mine who immediately wanted to share all his medical details with me. My colleagues didn't feel comfortable about the way I did my work. I am the kind of counsellor who is not afraid to share things of my private life with clients and my colleagues considered what I did not professional. The situation became pretty hard. I can understand them better now than I could in those days.

In the years that followed HAART entered my life. After a period of serious illnes in 1994-1996 I got my life back. I found my energy back and I discovered that there were other things in life I found important. I decided to go for a careerswitch. At 37 I started my conservatoire study. I became a singer and a singing teacher. I still work as a nurse part time, for a home care company. This gives me financial security and enables me to only do musical things I love to do. I am very happy with the life I lead right now. Music gives me a lot of energy and I have a very nice job as an emergency nurse.

Things I love to do:

Driving my citroën
Cooking
Going to concerts
reading

My husband-to-be and I love travelling, we try to go on holiday at least twice a year. We love hiking in the mountains, but also city trips. We also both love clubbing. I frequently go to leathery places in the Netherlands like the Argos and the Eagle in Amsterdam, the Boss in The Hague. My sexual preferences are pretty rough. I find that in the leather community the fact that I have HIV is not such an issue for people, there are so many people with HIV there that they are used to it, and it never caused my any trouble in finding my sexual partners. Reading many threads here about disclosure I realise how lucky I am in that perspective.

Aidsmeds has become even more important for me now that I have met some members in real life. Last september I met Markmt and his partner, Hermie, Waterduck, Eirin, Blondbeauty, Val, and Joemutt. It was a great experience. I have got some people here I really care about.

I lost my best friend in 1992. His name was Paul. I think that when I wouldn't have had my lover, we would have become partners. When he was ill, I took care of him. My partner said he borrowed me to Paul for a while. It is true, I hardly gave my love any attention in those days, and he quietly accepted it. He was there for me when it was hard for me to deal with Paul's illness, his misery, his moodswings. He was there to catch me when I fell, when Paul died. I guess what that period taught me was how much my lover loves me. Marrying him this spring makes me incredibly happy.

Coen

Coen Honig at Facebook

Offline water duck

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #91 on: November 13, 2006, 04:34:51 PM »
Dearest Coen,

Thank you so much for sharing your story, you are like a small light in the dead of the night that leads us ' home '. I rejoice in having met you .

Siang

Offline Eldon

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #92 on: November 13, 2006, 05:06:32 PM »
Hi All,

I am Eldon. I am here to share, understand, enocourage, and learn.



Make the BEST of each and every Day!

Offline vegaslocal39

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #93 on: November 13, 2006, 07:31:17 PM »
This is hard for me.  I'm not out with my status to any but my very dearest and oldest friends.  None of the people I have met within the last 10 years are aware.  But, I'd really like to have some friends to talk about this with, so here goes....

My name is Jon.  I'm 39 years old.

I was born and partially raised in Texas, where I learned that all flavors of soda were called "Coke" and that a good steak is better than sex.  In my early teen years I moved with my family to Colorado, where I learned to ski and make fun of people from Texas.  Around age 21, I moved to Long Beach, California to live with my younger brother and to escape the cold climate.  In Long beach, I learned that men are filthy pigs.  God, I loved Long beach.  I lived there from age 21 until age 29, which is when I moved to Las Vegas to settle down and buy a house with my new love, Paul, who left a 15-year career on cruise ships to be with me.  I've been here now for 11 years and I don't see myself ever leaving.  I love the dry climate and the warm winters.

While I was in Long Beach, I came out.  It was the first time I had ever lived alone (my brother moved away) and far enough away from my family to lead my life as I saw fit.  My first love was a guy who traveled for a living, taking tour groups to Asia.  I joined the group for a trip to Hong Kong and was hooked on travel.  Our romantic relationship was short-lived, but we are still fast friends to this day.  Since that first trip to Asia, I've made four trips to Europe, numerous trips to the South Pacific, and taken several cruises.  This last spring, Paul and I spent two weeks traveling all over Germany.  It was the best trip yet.

I always intended to work on the front lines of the travel industry, but over the years it became obvious that I had a talent for computer programming.  I have worked with or directly for most of the big online travel companies at one time or another, as well as several Las Vegas centered web sites.  I use my years of experience working with various online travel outlets in my current position to create tools for call center agents.  To put it simply, I make the pretty buttons that the reservation agents on the phone press to help customers book and change plane tickets.

I was diagnosed in May of 1994, but Paul stayed with me, even though he was negative.  He still is.  I saw a doctor every 3-4 months for eight years, never taking any medications.  My t-cells never dropped below 400, and my viral load never climbed above 5,000.  That is until one day when they did.

I've been on a combination of Sustiva/Truvada (What was Truvada called before it was combined?  I can't remember.)  My viral load is undectable and my t-cell count is in the 600's.  I don't have much to complain about, but I do anyway.  My dad used to say that  I would complain if I was hung with a new rope.  Texans have lots of dumb saying like that.

I'm glad to be on board (pun intended) and look forward to getting to know you all in the years to come.





Offline Longislander

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #94 on: November 13, 2006, 11:10:51 PM »
Javier , Welcome. This is probably one of the best gifts your older brother could have given you!
infected 10/05 diagnosed 12-05
2/06   379/57000                    6/07 372/30500 25%   4/09 640/U/32% 
5/06   ?? /37000                     8/07 491/55000/24%    9/09 913/U/39%
8/06   349/9500 25%              11/07 515/68000/24     2/10 845/U/38%
9/06   507/16,000 30% !          2/08  516/116k/22%    7/10 906/80/39%
12/06 398/29000 26%             Start Atripla 3/08
3/07   402/80,000 29%            4/08  485/undet!/27
4/07   507/35,000 25%            7/08 625/UD/34%
                                                 11/08 684/U/36%

Offline Javicho

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #95 on: November 14, 2006, 11:11:01 AM »
Yes thank you, that's someting that allways will thank my brother. I told him that finally I was able to talk to you guys from all over the country.

Offline goatwriter

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #96 on: November 14, 2006, 11:52:01 AM »
Hi Ya
         I'm a heterosexual male from England. I look a bit like a goat I suppose and I'm a Capricorn. I've been poz about 12 years. An ex junkie, inspired by William Burroughs and John Carrol . I lived in the states for 6 years , where I got the taste for heroin and speed and bad boy behaviour. Actually It was more the bad boy behaviour that did it.
 The motorcycles, playboy girlfriend, leather jacket and white t-shirt, the gangster chic that came later. Heroin was a bit of a fashion accessory back then. I saw Nirvana play twice as an opening act. Actually Kurt Cobain would be the same age  as me if he were still alive.
 Good good times. Amazingly I never contracted hiv in that time, even though we were all sharing needles and having bucket loads of unsafe sex. (Yes, us hetro's can be pretty promiscuous too sometimes ;D). I remember meeting people with AIDS , as it was known back then, and I always, I’m glad to say, had some sympathy and  kindness to show to them.
That attitude that would serve me well in later life. I remember being homeless in San Francisco and going down to the AIDS camps down outside the court house or where ever it was.
 But anyway. I left the states after messing up my green card and doing time for selling drugs. And where should I go to start a new life. Thailand.
 Hardly the place for a dangerous hedonist to take it easy. Still took me a few years but I finally managed to contract the virus. And then my whole life changed. I knew almost in a moment that I didn't want to do drugs anymore and that I wanted to follow a spiritual path.
 Difficult times. Had to call my parents and ask them for money to get home, cold turkey and friends in a speed and ecstasy scene. But I worked on a farm and got some money together and travelled overland through the middle east to India. I spent the next two and half years in India studying and practising Buddhism.
 Finally I returned to England and moved to London and met the first poz people since I was diagnosed 6 years before, at a support group. I realised that there were many things, as spiritual as I was, that I still had to deal with. And I still am.
 The worst thing for me about being poz ,by far , is the sex and relationship thing. I miss being a slut sometimes, I really do. but more than that I miss that I don’t believe in romantic love anymore. That girl who works in the cafe, the one that smiled at me in the street. I just don't feel I have the right to pursue them, or I'm too afraid of being disappointed.
Recently I've gotten back into the hiv scene. My main interest at the moment is around criminalisation, ethics, statistics, relationships, support and networking. I'm angry at seeing the rights of poz people being suppressed or ignored.
I’m hoping for some good debates and informative talks on this forum and to make some new friends.
And I can be a bit of a devils advocate too somtimes and a bit un p.c. , but I dont mean any harm. I think I'm a very liberal and open minded person, just a bit goatish sometimes.

Offline vegaslocal39

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #97 on: November 14, 2006, 12:41:57 PM »
Wow, goatwriter!  What an amazing story.  I envy people who delve into spirituality.  I have no idea what that would be like.  I live in a rigid world where everything has to be "just so".  What must it be like to take off to explore a foreign culture for a couple of years?  Wow....scary.

Offline RyanFL

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #98 on: November 15, 2006, 10:26:58 AM »
Ryan here. I am 29 and tested positive Sept 19, 2005. I have only been to the doctor 3 times since then. The last my count was cd4 601 VL: 35,000. I have not dealt with the whole HIV thing very well ,that is why I joined this forum I guess to read what others are going thru and such .I get ill just thinking about going to see the doctor and have been trying to keep up with my appointments but its hard on me. lately I have just gave up altogether. I live with my boyfriend Paul who is 18. I am unsure of his status but have a feeling he is positive, He new my status and we have always had safe sex except 2 times. Well thats about it for now I hate talking to much about myself...

Offline bobik

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #99 on: November 16, 2006, 05:39:31 AM »
Hi All,

I am Eldon. I am here to share, understand, enocourage, and learn.



Make the BEST of each and every Day!

Hi Eldon,

I am curious about who is behind all the positive reactions......can you tell more?

Coen
Coen Honig at Facebook

Offline shadow

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #100 on: November 19, 2006, 03:39:03 AM »
Oh, where do I begin.................... let's see............... I just found this site the other day while searching for a support group.  I've come to a point where I need to have people that I can talk to about my situation.  I have absolutely no one to talk to because I haven't told anybody that I'm HIV positive (except for my ex-boyfriend who I had sworn to secrecy and he's no longer around).

Anyway, I got tested back in 1993 at a womens clinic, I had my little girl with me when I got the results and was just numb.  I went home and racked my brain trying to figure who, where, when, and why me?  But I couldn't figure it out, I just figured this was some kind of a cruel joke for all the running around, drinking, and  drugging I'd done.

After I got my head straight I decided to move out of the state that I had grown up in, mainly because I didn't want everyone knowing my business.  In 1994 I moved to Florida; my life was very normal up until 2002, that's when I started getting sick.  It seemed like I was at my doctor's office every 3 to 4 weeks for some kind of infection and rattling in my chest that just would not go away.  Deep down I knew what was wrong but I didn't want to deal it, I had kids to take care and a job and a life..........................

Eventually, I got re-tested and referrred to an Infectious Disease Specialist. By then I was really sick, my hair was falling out in clumps, my weight was dropping and I had to drag myself into work every day.  When I wasn't at work I was sleeping.  I really thought that I was going to die, I know that my kids thought so too, yet I never told them what was wrong with me.

Looking back I think I should have told them but I just couldn't do it, I couldn't have my kids thinking that their mother got this terrible disease because she enjoyed running around and having sex when she was younger.  It may sound stupid or selfish or even foolish to some of you but I am just not willing to air my dirty laundry to my kids.   

Since then I have been lucky enough to have found some good doctors.  I've been on several different types of meds. (some I've had bad reactions to)  and I've gained an awful lot of weight over the past 4 years but at least I'm here!  My kids are just about grown, I still have the same job and I feel good most of the time. 

I'm very happy that I found this site and hope to make some friends and hopefully find a local support group to attend.

Thanks for being here.

Lisa



Offline Catman

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #101 on: November 19, 2006, 08:47:52 AM »
Welcome, Lisa:
                    This is the best site to share your worries with. Many people here have gone through hell but are back and still moving forward in life. We share our thoughts, our health issues, and even our personal everyday experiences. Some are sad, some are funny, and some are just good old advice. We are a big family here so do post whenever you can because the more you expose yourself, the more we get to know you. Oh, and about not telling your kids, do so when you think the time is right, but remember, sooner or later you might need their help and it would be wise if at least one of them knew (it all depends on who's the mature one). I haven't told anyone either except my partner. My family doesn't know and I've been + for 20 years. For the moment, if you are healthy and living a normal life, eat healthy, take your meds, and do rest when you feel your body needs it. Welcome and good luck to you!  ;)
Catman

Meow to the birds
Meow to the tree's
Meow to the end
of this dreadful disease...

Offline gwbga2000

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Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #102 on: November 19, 2006, 10:25:08 AM »
Hi all George here! 37, Living in a small town somewhere in the middle of no where. found out of my status in 1996, so it's been 10 years. No major problems so far. I work in a prison. I tend to take on more than I should family, friends, and work. Some how I still get it done. Failure is not in my ethics. Sometimes I wish I would let myself fail just to show me that I am human. I've built my own monster. Now I must live with him.

Offline pozguy75

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #103 on: November 19, 2006, 10:59:43 AM »
Well I suppose I should re-introduce myself as well:

Life of Jeromy
And the trials that made me who I am today.

It was 1975, March 28 at 10:04am. My mother was wheeled into the delivery room at the Naval Hospital located at the China Lake Naval Weapons Center, where she, by caesarian, delivered healthy twin boys. My brother-Joshua was first and I followed two minutes later. The odd part of my birth is that I didn’t cry-I came out singing “Rose’s Turn” from GYPSY.

My brother and I grew up in the town of Ridgecrest, CA which is where the China Lake Naval base is located. Though don’t be fooled by the name, Ridgecrest is in the Mojave desert 250 miles north east of Los Angeles and two hours east of Bakersfield. Its claim to fame is that it is the “Most direct route to Death Valley.” My brother and I went through our entire scholastic careers in this very small town, where, for fun, we hunted for Horny Toads and stuck them in our teachers’ desks. That is all there is to do in that town, oh yes, and suffer from the 120-degree summers!

At a very early age, I had the urge to become a STAR! So my mother packed me up and took to me to Los Angeles once or twice a week to audition and audition and audition some more. I think I heard the word “No” so often that I began to add “No” to my stage name: Jeromy NO Dunn. After all the blood, sweat and tears, I finally made my big break; I was now a Mattel kid (everyone needs a GI-Joe)! I did commercials and more commercials and more commercials and then I was too old. Too old? I was only 8 for crying out loud! So I became familiar with that nasty “N” word again.

By the time I got into High School, I was doing everything I could do to make it as an actor: community theatre, dinner theatre, street theatre, and standing in front of my bathroom mirror impersonating Barbara Streisand for hours on end. Until finally my mother said if she heard “People” one more time, she was going to scrape my vocal chords out of my throat using the wooden spoon I using as my microphone! After more auditioning, I landed a recurring role on a popular NBC show called “California Dreams.” I had made it! I was a huge star (well at least the six twelve year olds that watched the show thought so)!

I graduated from High School and moved out of that dusty, dirt-ridden town for my glamorous life in Hollywood, where I promptly moved into a one-bedroom apartment in Burbank, CA with one bathroom, no shower, a hot plate, and four roommates. This was it; I hit it big!

I spent the next 4 years trying to make something of myself, taking odd jobs here and there; I was the best retail queen anyone had seen; (“Now, that was a extra-extra large thong, right?”) I needed to come clean with my family about being gay, so I did what any self-respecting small town –“mo” would -I had it announced on the front page of my hometown newspaper. Discretion was never my strong suit. My family was taken aback, way back; my mother’s response was: “It’s my fault…I shouldn’t have let you have that Easy Bake Oven ® when you were three!”

After that fiasco finally blew over, I wanted to be serious again, so I quit my retail job and went to be a serious actor. I started waiting tables (“would you like fries with that?”).

I had been a server for about a year or so when I met Steve my life partner, whom I have been with for seven years and counting. He works for a major aerospace company that moved us to Seattle, where again I had to wait tables (no degree = no “real” job). I don’t remember how it happened, but I went to an interview for a sales position with a high tech company and was hired as a technical recruiter. I worked for the company for 2 years, and then I was wooed to work for a dot com, now dot gone! After that, I went to work for a bank in the Seattle area.

I worked in the Data/Information Security department; with the Communications and Knowledge Management team; and I was with them for three and a half years as of July 2004; I just made a career transition to another big financial company and I work as a Senior Information Security Analyst with the IT Security Services group doing the same job as I did at the bank. Though I feel that I have been quite successful up to now, I have had to fight very hard to get where I am today.

In January 2005, I was given news that would forever change my life. I was diagnosed as HIV positive. My doctors have been able to make an educated guess that I have been positive for 7 years prior to my diagnosis. I now volunteer with a local AIDS Service Organization (ASO) in its prevention department by traveling to many local schools and churches as and HIV/AIDS educator and public speaker. It’s important work and it means a lot to me to be doing this as well; if I can open one mind to what it means to be living with this disease, and to start breaking down the wall of stigma, that surrounds this virus, one brick at a time.

Steve and I split up June of 2006 and I now live in Charlotte, NC. I have made some terrific friends here and I look forward to my life starting over!

Well, that’s me in a nutshell…and it’s very nice to meet you!
Dx 2005
ATRIPLA

Offline puertorico2006

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #104 on: November 19, 2006, 02:30:49 PM »
Hi, my names Josh. I just registered with the site a few minutes ago lol. I live in San Juan, Puerto Rico and I'm 23 years Old. I am a student, waiter, and manager of a restaurant here. I just tested positive for HIV about 2 weeks ago (I did a home access test). I guess I have been positive for about a year and 8 months, I had a HORRIBLE unexplainable flu about that time ago and got scared, took a test 2 days late and it came back negative (but i later learned antibodies take 1-3 weeks to produce so i was in the window period). I was living in florida at that time and turned from innocent good boy to dumbass meth-head so i was definatly engaging in behavior i would never consider now that im sober :-D.

I haven't gotten sick yet, have a doctors appointment soon so i hope to be ok :-D. I've been hitting the gym, eating healthy and honestly never felt better or in better health (i started being healthy before diagnoses).

I enjoy the gym, dinner, movies, school, etc.....

anyways this introduction seems to be turning into a personals ad instead of an introduction so ill just leave it at this hehe.

Glad i found this site though (lots of support) =)

-josh
Infected Probably: may 2005
Diagnosed: 11/2006

11/28/2006 CD4:309 / VL: 1907 No meds yet
12/27/2006 CD4:339/  VL:1649 No meds yet
  4/28/2007 CD4:550/  VL:1800 No meds :-)

Offline newt

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #105 on: November 19, 2006, 05:47:53 PM »
Hello welcome Josh, sorry you end up here in this bus shelter, but welcome all the same :)

Hope they go on making good movies for the next 50 years

- mat

Now playing: Damien Rice, Elephant
"The object is to be a well patient, not a good patient"

Offline allopathicholistic

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #106 on: November 20, 2006, 01:08:01 PM »
After more auditioning, I landed a recurring role on a popular NBC show called “California Dreams.” I had made it! I was a huge star (well at least the six twelve year olds that watched the show thought so)!

Oh wow, I liked “California Dreams” (especially Michael Cade who played Sly Winkle) and pretty much the entire TNBC Saturday line-up. Oh gosh I was 22 years old and watching TNBC

Offline rayvjr

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #107 on: November 20, 2006, 01:15:26 PM »
Well my name is Ray.  I am a former elected official from New Jersey.  I tested positive in November 2005 and went public on Worlds AIDS Day.  The public showed me love, the party threw me off the party line...I did not run for re-election.  This past year has been a lot of ups and downs as I have adjusted to becoming HIV positive and restarting my career, which up to that point had been on a great path, but I have survived it all.  I just created www.justtestedpositive.com so that all of us can meet and chat and build a great web community.  You can find me there in the chatroom trying to build up the site.  If you have a moment pass by, you don't have to be a "newbie" everyone is welcome...and its for us..

Offline klule2k

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #108 on: November 21, 2006, 04:50:59 AM »
My name is Fred and i live in Uganda, been poz for over 12 years and on meds for 4 years.

46 years of age and now widowed for the last 6 years.

its nice reading about your expriences guys it keeps us going

best of luck and take care

fred

Offline pozguy75

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #109 on: November 22, 2006, 12:34:19 PM »
Hi, my names Josh. I just registered with the site a few minutes ago lol. I live in San Juan, Puerto Rico and I'm 23 years Old. I am a student, waiter, and manager of a restaurant here. I just tested positive for HIV about 2 weeks ago (I did a home access test). I guess I have been positive for about a year and 8 months, I had a HORRIBLE unexplainable flu about that time ago and got scared, took a test 2 days late and it came back negative (but i later learned antibodies take 1-3 weeks to produce so i was in the window period). I was living in florida at that time and turned from innocent good boy to dumbass meth-head so i was definatly engaging in behavior i would never consider now that im sober :-D.

I haven't gotten sick yet, have a doctors appointment soon so i hope to be ok :-D. I've been hitting the gym, eating healthy and honestly never felt better or in better health (i started being healthy before diagnoses).

I enjoy the gym, dinner, movies, school, etc.....

anyways this introduction seems to be turning into a personals ad instead of an introduction so ill just leave it at this hehe.

Glad i found this site though (lots of support) =)

-josh

Hey Josh, and welcome to the forums...sorry you have to be here, but welcome!
Dx 2005
ATRIPLA

Offline David_CA

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Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #110 on: November 22, 2006, 12:53:33 PM »
How funny!


... my mother’s response was: “It’s my fault…I shouldn’t have let you have that Easy Bake Oven ® when you were three!”


You know, I had one of those when I was three also.  Mine was a really pale lime green (remember, this was the late '60's).  What really bothered one of my grandmothers was the tea set I got for my birthday a month later!  The signs were everywhere!

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 jntmax39

  • Member
  • Posts: 81
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #111 on: November 26, 2006, 01:23:06 AM »
Hi all my name is Janet and I am 39yrs old been pos since 05 I have two girls 19 and 16 I have been married for a yr,but have been with my husband for 8 yrs. I've been on and off this site since finding out of my status, but I would always forget my sign on name and password so this time I saved it to my computer,lol...
I enjoy coming on here because you all  are so knowledgable and very nice thank you. It is hard to find anything in my community as a way of support,so I come on here.I have been unable to work for a log time now,due to a lot of health issues. I am a diabetic also and have PN.I have so many things going on medically. It just feels good to come on here and read about everyone else. I don't feel so alone anymore. I have a great support system but I just feel like they don't understand what I'm going threw,you know when someone asks you how your feeling they really don't want to here how your really feeling.lol...
My mom went away for three months,She spent the summer in Cape Cod,mass.So when she came home I had to bring in my daughters friend to help with  some of the responsabilities of the house.
My daghter is young and she is having a hard time excepting what is happening to me,anyway my mom asks why I need so much help and my daughter told her that I'm getting worse and that my husband has to bathe me and she flipt out and said no no no she's fine. So it was a pretty bad seen my daughter started to cry I started to cry and my husband just got angry at my mom.
My mom doesn't think I'm fighting hard enough she just thinks I'm giving up.
I don't know maybe I am. I'm tired of feeling ill and sometime I;m tired of fighting. It is one thing after another. If it wasn't for my girls and my husband I would give up.I am doing the best that I can with what I have to work with. I'm starting to think I'm like a cat with nine lives.lol.....
Anyway it is night to meet you all and I hope to talk to you all soon

Offline Queen Tokelove

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,033
  • Smokey the Smurf
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #112 on: November 26, 2006, 05:07:16 AM »
Nice to meet you, Janet. I can relate with you because I am diabetic as well and am starting to have to battle with pn too. It sounds to me that your pn seems to be more severe than mine. I am glad you found us because this is a great place for support.

I am sorry to hear about your daughter getting upset. Does your children know the extent of your illnesses? If not maybe a discussion about it will help. Just a suggestion. I was worried about how my son would react to me being poz since my sister decided to tell him and just recently we had a talk about it. It made things a lot easier. Thanks to my sister, he thought I was on my death bed. But it is up to you.

I'm sorry about what your mother said, that was terrible thing to say. Sometimes family members can say the most hurtful things. I hope things will get better for you. I will keep you in my prayers....
Started Atripla/Ziagen on 9/13/07.
10/31/07 CD4-265 VL- undetectable
2/6/08 CD4- 401 VL- undetectable
5/7/08 CD4- 705 VL- undetectable
6/4/08 CD4- 775 VL- undetectable
8/6/08 CD4- 805 VL- undetectable
11/13/08 CD4- 774 VL--undetectable
2/4/09  CD4- 484  VL- 18,000 (2 months off meds)
3/3/09---Starting Back on Meds---
4/27/09 CD4- 664 VL-- undetectable
6/17/09 CD4- 438 VL- 439
8/09 CD4- 404 VL- 1,600
01-22-10-- CD4- 525 VL- 59,000
Cherish the simple things life has to offer

The Royal Blog

Offline NightmareHall

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  • Posts: 61
  • Out for a Sunday drive to Zeta Reticuli
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #113 on: November 26, 2006, 10:05:53 AM »
*
« Last Edit: December 14, 2006, 11:09:31 AM by NightmareHall »

Offline thunter34

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  • Posts: 7,310
  • His name is Carl.
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #114 on: November 26, 2006, 10:38:17 AM »
Hey, Ray!  Welcome to AM! 
AIDS isn't for sissies.

Offline aupointillimite

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  • Posts: 3,229
  • FUS DO RAH!
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #115 on: November 26, 2006, 07:38:08 PM »
I'm still fairly new here... so who'd like to read my autobiography?

I was born on 4 Sep 1982 in Washington, DC.  My dad was in the military, so my childhood was spent in Maryland, Georgia, Arizona, North Carolina, Germany, and all over Virginia.

That said, I consider Virginia Beach to be my hometown, because I lived there the longest (a whopping 5 years) and went to high school there.  That city owns me because of puberty.

I graduated high school in 2000 and went to a community college in Fredericksburg, Va. before going to William and Mary in 2001. 

I. Hated. That. Place.

So, I left in late 2003 to move to Richmond. 

I contracted HIV in 2004 and found out on 22 Feb 2005.  I was going to join the Navy (shut up, I had taken the DLAB... the Defence Language Apititude Battery and qualified to learn Arabic and Chinese... fun) to be a linguist for the military... but a positive result on the test put an end to that.

Since then, I've been in a sort of wheel spinning mode... spending a lot of my time in New York... with trips to Boston and Philly... I've gone to Montreal twice... and I like going to places where most people don't go.  Like Tangier Island or the Great Dismal Swamp (look them up, especially Tangier Island... that place is amazing).

I currently live in a neighborhood in Richmond called Oregon Hill with my awesome Roommate of the Large Breasts, her Manx Cat of the No Tail, and my Cat of the Extreme Menace To All Fragile Objects He Comes Into Contact With.  Their names are Megatron and Rimbaud. 

I will be relocating to Austin early next year.  It promises to rock.

I am not satisfied with where my life is right now, and I think a move to somewhere I've never been would be the best thing to do.  I have a penchant for extreme action in the face of dissatisfaction.

Yes.  That is all.
Your tastebuds can't repel flavor of this magnitude!

Offline allopathicholistic

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  • Posts: 3,258
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #116 on: November 26, 2006, 07:59:28 PM »
I will be relocating to Austin early next year.  It promises to rock.

keep us posted!

Offline Eldon

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,664
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #117 on: November 26, 2006, 08:07:35 PM »
Hey Aupointillimite,

Austin, Texas is an experience that is waiting to happen for you. I wish you the BEST during your transition. Oh Yes, Transition.


Make the BEST of each Day!

Offline RobT

  • Member
  • Posts: 319
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #118 on: November 26, 2006, 11:50:18 PM »
I guess I shud introduce myself...

My name is Rob. I am 28 yrs old and got out of the military in Jan. 2005. I met my boy, Mike, in November of 2004 and he was the driving force to get me to leave the military cuz of our plans to marry once the UK Civil Partnership Act was approved. I also wanted to get a decent form of education.
I felt fine when I was released from active duty, only to realise that in mid- August of 2005 was the worst day of my life (that was the day I received my 'preliminary positive' HIV result). I kept on asking questions like How or Why cuz I was trying to b as faithful to my man as I cud since I was released from the military.
No one cud explain to me what a 'preliminary positive' result was and I was hopeing that it wud b a false positive, so I took countless HIV tests which seemed to confirm the obvious. I was so depressed. Both Mike and I cudn't believe it, but Mike has vowed to stay w/ me ever since- we currently r and just celebrated our 2nd yr anniversary.
Mike came and saw me in September of that yr and we both went to my initial HIV doctor's visit at Harbourview hospital. I was still saddened on how my life turned from the happy go lucky kid that I have been to a very jaded character.
In November of that yr, right b4 my school term finished, I broke out in a bad case of shingles and was rushed to the ER, curteousy of my sis. When my HIV doctor found out, she claimed that I shud not b too concerned and that it was not the end of the world. I thought otherwise. When my shingles cleared up, I started my HIV meds, Truvada and Sustiva, on Thanksgiving day.
The meds have improved my health and my overall outlook on life. I never thought I wud b as depressed as I was, but now I am the exact opposite. The combo of Truvada/Sustiva has helped improve my health.
I have only seen a doctor once this year, and that was only for a cold. I remember going into seeing a doctor for a lot worse. I have developed a good way of communication w/ my HIV doctor, we email eachother if something ever happens that I believe I wud need to alert her over.
Ever since I got diagnosed, I have been keeping my result a secret. I have told a few ppl since then like a few of my closest friends and I developed the nerve to tell my parents earlier this yr. I feel grateful of having a supportive sis that claims she understands what I am going thru, along w/ my drawn out LDR. My brother, Geoff, knew about my status cuz my sister told him. I have 2 brothers that r twins...and no, I am not one of them.
I currently reside in Sammamish, WA in a 2 bed/2 bath apartment. My roomm8s r my sister and her bf.
I have been working at a call centre since July, 2005. It was only ment as a temp., pending my UK immigration (which has not gone thru yet).
I was made a permanent employee in September of this yr, just a few weeks since my car was totaled. I have had a lot of ups and downs since then, but I believe there is some sort of silver lining somewhere. I still don't know how optimistic I shud feel about my HIV status, which I have forgotten until the time comes around for me to take my pills. I struggle to stay as close to adherrance as possible. I tell my doctor that I go insane if I am 'not on schedule'. I really h8 that. I guess that explains my improvement from where I initially started out, when my #s were way off the charts and my CD4's were hovering near the 200 range...coninsidence??
I am a big fan of going to the gym and I walk to mine, cuz I have a free membership due to my sister's bf, who happens to work at the club. I spend countless hrs in there, trying to get the body that I had previously. All in the name of vanity. Is that still a sin??

RobT




Current meds: Atripla
VL: undetectable
CD4: 630

Offline Beto

  • Member
  • Posts: 7
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #119 on: May 12, 2007, 01:19:06 PM »

Hi there! My name is Beto (actually it's a nickname, something like "Bob" in English :)) and I am from Brazil. I live in one of the largest cities in the world, São Paulo, and have been a user of AM since January. I have never posted anything up til now, but have been reading the posts religiously and have learned a lot since then. I am 36 years old and have a relationship with a poz man, Andy, who is 34. In the picture he is the one sitting down. I love him to bits, and even when I thought I would never fall in love again, at 36 (we've been together for 8 months), here comes life and teaches me another lesson, this time a very enjoyable one :D. Andy is one of those fortunate people and even though he's been poz for 10 years, his VL is undetectable and CD4s are aways above 1000. He takes no meds as of yet but has a very positive attitude towards life, and tells me he is not afraid of starting them when the time comes. I am not aware if you, friends of AM, know that in Brazil we get the medication for free from our government. No HIV poz person has to pay a dime for HAART, and we have now about 180k people signed up and taking full advantage of this benefit. My relationship with Andy and being part of this community have been really important to me as I can say today I have a completely different view and approach to this virus and how to live with it. I hope I will be more active in the posts from now on. Congratz on your (our) immense courage, and sorry for my bad English. All the best!

Beto.

Offline appleboy

  • Member
  • Posts: 344
  • Just me!
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #120 on: May 12, 2007, 01:35:18 PM »
Welcome!  Glad you have joined us!
AppleBoy
 ;D
If you are walking down the street and your pants drop to your ankles bend over pick them up and keep on walking!
My Blog

Offline paolo10954

  • Member
  • Posts: 57
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #121 on: May 12, 2007, 03:34:03 PM »
Hi everyone, I just started reading the forums and lately have started posting a bit. I seroconverted sometime past June 2003 until my partner and I were diagnosed in December 2004. There's a high level of palliative comfort in knowing there are others who care and offer camaraderie to those who need advice or even just a listening ear to vent to.

Although I remain asymptomatic and not under medications, my partner unfortunately have gone gotten ill with encephalitis and toxo 10 months after diagnosis despite taking truvada and sustiva. After extensive rehab he is now back in the workforce tho he suffers relentless fatigue, occasional backdoor trots and inability to button his collar due to impaired precision of his left hand.

I work in Physical Rehabilitation. Any related issues, you can always message me here or at paolo10954@aim.com. I would be more than happy to give back to this community for all the help and concern that abound in these forums. 

Paolo
jun03     hiv negative
dec03     tested positive
mar05     cd4 698  vl 23221 no meds
jul05       cd4 660  vl 2962 no meds
dec05     cd4 553  vl 5412 no meds
mar06     cd4 610  vl 3158 no meds
june06    cd4 523  vl 3924 no meds
dec06     cd4 616  vl 1236 no meds
march07  cd4 536  vl 1331 no meds
june07    cd4 486  vl   820 no meds
sept07     cd4 576  vl  380  no meds
aug08     cd4 530  vl 1725 no meds
april09    cd4 428  vl  1059 no meds
july09     cd4 511  vl   533 no meds
jan10      cd4 380  vl  1200 no meds
mar10     cd4 262  vl  2389 no meds
april28, 2010 started on Isentress and Truvada
july10     cd4 340  vl undetectable
nov10     cd4 431  vl undetectable
march11  cd4 350  vl undetectable

Offline paolo10954

  • Member
  • Posts: 57
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #122 on: May 12, 2007, 04:08:31 PM »
Addendum:   My AIM screen name is p10954@aim.com. Sorry for the mistake.
jun03     hiv negative
dec03     tested positive
mar05     cd4 698  vl 23221 no meds
jul05       cd4 660  vl 2962 no meds
dec05     cd4 553  vl 5412 no meds
mar06     cd4 610  vl 3158 no meds
june06    cd4 523  vl 3924 no meds
dec06     cd4 616  vl 1236 no meds
march07  cd4 536  vl 1331 no meds
june07    cd4 486  vl   820 no meds
sept07     cd4 576  vl  380  no meds
aug08     cd4 530  vl 1725 no meds
april09    cd4 428  vl  1059 no meds
july09     cd4 511  vl   533 no meds
jan10      cd4 380  vl  1200 no meds
mar10     cd4 262  vl  2389 no meds
april28, 2010 started on Isentress and Truvada
july10     cd4 340  vl undetectable
nov10     cd4 431  vl undetectable
march11  cd4 350  vl undetectable

Offline asaint

  • Member
  • Posts: 95
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #123 on: May 12, 2007, 04:29:33 PM »
Hey all Bob here      As of 10/2006       I’m 22 - 0
I been kicking HIV ASS, When I look back when I found out I was +, I gotta laugh. It happened in Oct.1984 when I received  certified mail. I was so happy, thought I won a trip that I entered. My two co-workers and I smoked a bone then went to the post office to get the letter. I didn’t even look and see who it was from, I just started ripping it open with my two friends over my shoulder looking and there it was in big letters SORRY TO INFORM YOU BUT THE BLOOD YOU DONATED HAS TEST POSITIVE FOR AIDS. My fucking jaw dropped, I didn’t say a word, neither did my friends. AIDS was all in the news back then, and people didn’t think too kindly to people with aids. I’m like what the fuck am I gonna do, I thought for sure I was a goner. All of this right after losing my sister Elsie in February from cancer then two weeks later my mother died of a broken heart, and then in July my best friend Bobbo got stabbed to death the day my son was born. I’m like what the hell else can happen to me.
 Just before getting the news from the blood bank, I went to the doctors for what I thought was cancer under my arm. I went to the hospital few days later to have it removed. He preceded to tell me I have aids and hep-c (DAH already knew two days ago} then tells my wife behind my back to get tested. I remember him telling me I could live for 20 years, Yeah right, within a year of being diagnosed people were dropping like flies. And my wife, well she never does get tested till I get very sick in 96. Thank god she and my sons have tested negative,
 I didn’t started meds till 97cause I didn’t want to be a Ginny pig, test rat. I started with comuvair and fortafase something like that, my t-cells were <4 and V load off the charts. I stayed on med for about a year before my drug addiction started and I stopped taking my meds. My t-cell made it to like 100-120 something and V load was undetectable. When I ended up in the hospital again in 2000 I start meds again, only to succumb to drug addiction  a few months later, and stopped taking them. Now I been staying the course with my meds. Its been like 18 months or so, my cd4's are 63  8% and v load <50
All in all it’s been hell, lost lots of friends, been in and out of drug addiction, the sickness and the big one, after 20 years my wife got tiered of me falling in love with drugs and being depressed and we divorced in 2004. Oh well life goes on and I hope I see another 20 years just to prove that jerk-off doctor was wrong.
6/11 VL <50   CD4 (9%)   CD8 (54%}

Offline pozattitude

  • Member
  • Posts: 909
  • Enjoy
    • to find out more about me....
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #124 on: May 14, 2007, 11:50:17 AM »
Hi everyone

I'm a newbie to the forum although I've been registered member AIDSmeds since my diagnosis 10yrs ago.
I didn't go the the doctors until 2 yrs after my testing poz due to medical insurance.  I was in college and did my test anonymous.  When I finally had my insurance and had my 1st lab results, my viral load was in the millions and my CD4 was just over 250, and still I had no symptoms.
My only trip to the hospital was caused by an allergic reaction to Zerit.  I developed a horrible rash and soon my vision was blurred, my skin began to harden and turn purple.  I was on Sustiva at the time too, so the doctors thought it was the common rash Sustiva can cause.
I have been on a Kaletra, Ziagen, Videx combo since 2001 and my viral load has remained <50 while my CD4 count has been as high as 1100 and never less than in the 600's.  I have been asymptomatic the entire time since my seroconversion... I feel very lucky for that!
I'm a Florida native ( Ft.Lauderdale/Miami) now living in California (SF Bay).  I lived in Brazil for many years and I have also lived in France and North Carolina.   
I have had a pretty good tolerance to the meds.  My major complaints would have to be the nausea, loss of appetite and the pain from the peripheral neuropathy, but they are manageable with natural remedies. I am a medical marijuana patient and advocate.  The other things that bother me are the fatigue...I just don't have the energy anymore, the dry and itchy skin on my elbows and knees, my cholesterol and triglycerides are out of control, and depression has been a major issue.
My depression has not left me sad, crying, locked in a room, but  I lost my passion for life.
I still have hopes that I will find that what makes me tick again.

Rich

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

Offline allopathicholistic

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,258
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #125 on: May 14, 2007, 01:43:10 PM »
  My major complaints would have to be the nausea, loss of appetite and the pain from the peripheral neuropathy, but they are manageable with natural remedies. I am a medical marijuana patient and advocate.  The other things that bother me are the fatigue...I just don't have the energy anymore, the dry and itchy skin on my elbows and knees, my cholesterol and triglycerides are out of control, and depression has been a major issue.
My depression has not left me sad, crying, locked in a room, but  I lost my passion for life.
I still have hopes that I will find that what makes me tick again.

Rich

Hi Rich, Hope we can help you rediscover things about yourself. Recently my pal Robert posted this on medical marijuana:
http://forums.poz.com/index.php?topic=8894.0

And this recent article on AIDSmeds might interest you too:
http://www.aidsmeds.com/articles/1667_11275.shtml

Offline 404error

  • Member
  • Posts: 431
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #126 on: May 14, 2007, 06:43:36 PM »
Hello there.  My name is Andre and I am a 27 year old heterosexual male living in Canada.  I was diagnosed with HIV back in 2006.  Since becoming diagnosed, I have made some serious strides in improving my health via positive lifestyle changes.  Where once I enjoyed smoking 20 cigarettes a day, weekends and evenings in the pub with friends, and the occasional weekend of hard partying with recreational drug use, now I take pleasure in healthier things.  A nice meal, a walk, a hike, cycling, fishing, conversation, going to the movies or to see a play, and a host of other things that don't involve me polluting my body with toxins.  I still do like to grab a few pints and watch the game, or enjoy a bottle of wine with dinner but no longer are those the kinds of things I'm doing all the time.  That said, I still do enjoy smoking some marijuana from time to time although I have also cut way back on that and am no longer a chronic.  I missed my brain as well as being able to properly articulate myself.  It's great to have it back!

I'm looking forward to life.  Looking forward to all the things I was before being diagnosed although obtaining some of those things might not be as easy as they once were.  Marriage, kids, a family of my own, someone to love and grow old with side by side... Ahhh...  Travel, new experiences, highs, lows, laughs, I'd say tears too but those are pretty hard to come by.  I don't know. Me in a condensed nut shut, probably a sunflower seed.
A social critic who promotes equality...

Offline SouthSam7

  • Member
  • Posts: 428
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #127 on: May 14, 2007, 11:51:17 PM »
Hey I'm Sam.  I'm going to keep this short, because, although I love you all, I ain't reading every posting; I'd be here all night.

I'm 39, live in south Alabama, still work, and am pretty healthy.

I'm bald, hairy, have big teeth and I'm in decent shape.  I work out at least 5 days a week. 

I was diagnosed about a year and a half ago and because of low cd4s, began meds almost immediately.

I have trouble getting meds about every 6 months, but eventually I jump thru enough hoops to get them.

99% of everything I know about hiv came from talking with the boys and girls here in the forums.

Love,
Sam

Offline kellyspoppi

  • Member
  • Posts: 153
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #128 on: May 29, 2007, 05:19:09 PM »
 ;D  hi all, it is great to meet all of you.

i have posted a "introduce yourself" bio on LTS's forum, where i gave all my personal info and how i got this bug. but since this is part of the "living with hiv" forum, i will keep this bio focused on what i have been up to since i got refocused, and over my post 1992 bout with depression.

after i lost my fiance and dealt with my grief over the loss of her and my dad for 2 years, i then reached out to an hiv support group in my upstate new york town. it was made up of a real mixed bag of gay males, IDU's, and minorities. but what was really different were the numbers of hetero females who had come up from nyc through halfway houses. many of them went through their treatment programs, then got degrees through area colleges and made roots here in our community.

i met my current wife at this support group as well as a member of ACT UP LA. it was through the encouragement of this man that i began to get involved in aids advocasy work in 1994. i joined the steering committee of my area ryan white network, as well as helped to form what is now our plwa advisory committee. i also joined the community advisory board of my local aids treatment center, and the board of directors of my area ASO. along the way, i was further assisted through self empowerment training provided by the LEADERSHIP TRAINING INSTITUTE ( LTI )funded by the aids institute here in new york.

slowly but surely i began to feel comfortable with the knowledge i had acquired of how the system and aids funding streams worked, to where, for the past 10 years, i participated in legislative office visits for more federal and state funding for adap and aids services, both here in albany & in wash dc.

my wife joined me as we began to do speaking engagements (on behalf of the NAMES PROJECT) at area high schools and colleges and world aids day events. this catipulted me into having my story made public in 2 periodicals, one globally, through being the united states representative of a world aids day publication circulated through the international planned parenthood federation & global aids network entitled "fulfilling fatherhood". these were the personal stories of hiv positive fathers throughout the world in 2005. a similar version of my story was also published by a midwestern college's creative writing class for their world aids day publication.

last year at NAPWA's "staying alive" conference, i participated in the poz magazine sponsored "taking back our dignity-the positive project", where over 50 plwa's did taped interviews for future aids related ads as well as training and educational dvd's. the focus of the interviews was the message "fear the virus, not us".

in december of last year i received from the new york state dept of health a "commissioners distinquished service award" for all the activity stated above.

and finally, in april of this year, my first column was printed by poz magazine called "flags of a father", as well as a few of my viewpoints on the poz "views" website.

if you were to ask me today what i cherish the most from my 22 years of living with hiv, my answer would be four things:

1) MINE & MY WIFE'S CONTINUED HEALTHY EXISTENCE WITH THIS DISEASE
AND THE LOVE AND SUPPORT WE HAVE GIVEN EACH OTHER.

2) THE LOVE I HAVE BEEN ABLE TO SHARE BETWEEN A FATHER AND HIS SON, AND OF COURSE, MY 4 GRANDCHILDREN.

3) GETTING OUT FROM UNDER THE WEIGHT OF STIGMA I NO LONGER WISH TO SUCCOMB TO WITH THIS DISEASE.

4) A WONDERFUL COLLAGE OF PHOTOS WHICH HANGS ON MY OFFICE WALL RECAPTURING THE JOURNEY I HAVE EXPERIENCED SINCE TAKING BACK CONTROL OF MY LIFE, INCLUDING MY LOCAL PLWA ADVISORY GROUP, SANDRA THURMAN (PRES CLINTON'S AIDS CZAR) & SHERYL SCHWARTZ (FOUNDER OF MOTHERS VOICES), CLEVE JONES (FOUNDER OF THE NAMES PROJECT), JEANNE WHITE-GINDER(RYAN WHITES MOM), OUR OWN REGAN HOFMANN, AND MY COMMISSIONERS AWARD.

 i guess you could say that in my case, i have been living positively with my hiv!

kellyspoppi 

 


Offline Andy101

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  • Posts: 33
  • Hello there,, How are ya ???
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #129 on: May 29, 2007, 06:51:36 PM »
OOooo so this is where I get to say hi,,,

Well HELLOOOOOOOOOOO every one,, hows things,,???

I thought it was about time i started reading and replying to some of the forums here,,lol

Well Im Andy,, Im 38 been Poz since Sept 2005, and im not to bad,, i have a fieasty  but friendly attitude towards my life,,tis sometimes upsets people but hey,, i dont mean to and you cant please every one all of the time,, hey,, thats life,,

Well i have a profile, in e-mail and a website so if you get bored,, check it out,,
Errrr anything wlse you wanna know ,, drop me a line or 12 and i will get back to you ,, im a bit dizzy when it comes to remembering what sites i have joined,,lol (i should have been born a blonde) lol but i will reply to all, PROMISE,,

Well have fun, stay safe,, and if thats too late,, JUST HAVE MORE FUN.. catch ya all soon i hope,,

Andy

 
still thinking about this one !!!

Offline naftalim

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  • Posts: 102
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #130 on: May 30, 2007, 01:47:52 AM »
My name is George. I am 51 and straight and I live in Vancouver BC. Grew up in Montreal Ultra Orthodox Jewish (the ones with the black hats and side curls) My mother was an Auschwitz survivor and that messed her up. My dad disappeared when I was 1.5 years old and has never been heard from since. My mother could not take care of us so we went through a series of foster homes. I was a tough kid so I survived, and I lioved to read and play sports so that kept me out of trouble. I was however abused as a child.

At 18, I moved to Israel by myself, lived on a Kibbutz. I joined the Israeli Army in the paratroops where I served for 3 years and then worked for several years as a Sky Marshall

I moved back to Canada at age 25 and got into high tech and have worked in that area ever since. In 1986 I went back to Israel for 2 years. My years in Israel were the best of my life.

I was a serious distance runner for over 20 years. In 1999 I started to feel very sluggish when running, and was wiped after an effort. I underwent test after test and doctor after doctor for 6 years. I had what I thought was a really bad flu in 1999 and was tested. My doctor said that there was a weak positive for HIV so they tested again and it was negative so I thought I was negative and that I had CFS. The Doctor should have scheduled another test for 3 months but did not. I was given false diagnoses for several illnesses including chronic fatigue syndrome. In 2005 I started to get serious night sweats, thrush and lost a lot of weight. I knew almost nothing about HIV and did not consider myself at risk. I loooked up the symptoms on the Net and asked my Doctor to give me an HIV test. Bingo. I was calm as I thought, oh, I only got it now, so its bad, but these days people live for many years with HIV. I met with an HIV counsellor and as she talks to me and looks at my medical history, she says that its quite possible that I have had it since 1999. Sure enough, once I did my CD4 and VL it was 94 and over 100,000 respectively. I am at a good clinic in Vancouver and I agreed to be on a Mavirovic study that my Doctor leads and its been quite good. No side effects to date.

I had several girlfriends from 1999 till I was diagnosed, luckily none of them tested positive so that was a huge relief.

I am nearing the 2 year anniversary of being on meds, and a little over 2 years since diagnosis. For the most part, things are ok. Mentally its tough at times, mostly due to the lack of an intimate relationship. My friends are still my friends. I do find that my zest for work has diminished somewhat, some things just dont seem as important.

So, I live my life much like I did before except for the personal realtionships. I cant at this point run like I used to and thats tough, but I hope to be able to at least be consistent.

I feel very thankful to the many people who were the early victims of this disease and who fought for what we have today. It is because of them that I can lead pretty much a normal life.

Offline xyahka

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  • Dance together!! aha!! aha!! I like it!!
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #131 on: June 16, 2007, 03:50:10 PM »
Hi i never posted here..... but i guess it is good we all introduce ourselves so when new members join us they get to know more about us.. so here i come (if you already know me... you don't need to read this lol)


Well, my name is Juan Carlos (real name) and i live in Latin America, i am 30 years old and have been poz since 13/03/07.
I am pretty ok now just few symptoms. I am fighting it all and i think i will get even better. I personally have decided Hiv won't become the main thing in my life, i am much more than that. I speak 5 languages (english, spanish and french = very good; russian and japanese = basic level).

I was studying international business management here but i haven't finish... i decided i will finish it before passing away (so it means i have long time to do it yet!!). I like to dance (very good dancer here), go out with friends and chat, travel, getting to know others and learn about the stories behind them, reading, listening to music and singing (eventhough with the voice i have i know i will never record a cd!!).

I have always been a very sporty type of guy, studied in a military academy i was always used to excercise, then i like running, swimming, all sort of outdoors sports, by the way... green belt in judo and gay. I think i will be here for long time huh? so feel free to private message me i am open to find new friends. Cheers!!

Juan Carlos
« Last Edit: December 12, 2009, 05:46:48 PM by Andy Velez »
13/03/07 1er diagnóstico /Peso: 79kg
19/04/07 CD4: 494 /CViral: ?? /Peso: 80kg
19/07/07 CD4: 659 /CViral: ?? /Peso: 79.5kg
06/03/08 CD4: 573 (después de meses muy deprimido) /CViral: ?? /Peso: 79kg
17/09/08 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 84Kg
06/02/09 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 85Kg /HCV: Neg /HBV: Neg.
07/03/09 CD4: ?? /CViral: ?? /Peso: 87Kg / Gym 3días/semana y Natación 2días/semana.
12/05/09 CD4: 470 /Cviral: ?? /Peso: 87Kg.
08/07/09 CD4: ? /CViral: ? /Peso: 77Kg.
09/12/09 CD4: 510 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg. No medicinas aún
10/01/10 CD4: ? /CViral: ? /Peso: 76Kg.
15/05/10 CD4: 320 /CViral: ? /Peso: 76Kg.
01/02/11 CD4: 291 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg.
05/05/11 CD4: 366 /CViral: ? /Peso: 78kg.
27/07/11 CD4: 255 /CViral: 138000 /Peso: 78kg.

Disfrutando y aceptando una nueva vida...

Offline sweetasmeli

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  • Posts: 1,052
  • Love what you are...
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #132 on: November 12, 2007, 05:24:38 PM »
GREAT BIG FAT BUMP!

I would like to make a request that this thread be stickied.

I was pointed in this thread's direction by my new dear friend John(Oso) during a lovely Skype chat the other day. After ploughing through it over the last couple of days (and having still not finished!), I realised that there is so much about the friends I've made through Aidsmeds that I didn't know (prior to actually meeting them) and am still learning about those I still haven't met and am hopefully yet to meet (for example, I didn't know my little guy Jaser plays the drums!).

Plus I just think it makes good sense to have an introductions thread always at the top of the forum.

So, Mr and/or Ms Moderators...if you would be so kind...pretty please with a cherry on top!

Debra :)

PS: For those with dial-up - apologies - but if you can cope with the porn thread in OT, you can cope with this! ;)
« Last Edit: November 12, 2007, 05:45:03 PM by sweetasmeli »
/\___/\       /\__/\
(=' . '=)    (=' . '=)
(,,,_ ,,,)/   (,,,_ ,,,)/ Cats rule!

The difference between cats and dogs is that dogs come when called, whereas cats take a message and get back to you.

Yeia kai hara (health and happiness) to everyone!

Offline sacinsc

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  • Posts: 353
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #133 on: November 12, 2007, 06:45:27 PM »
OK, I can do this. I'll try and be positive since right now my life blows as some of you on here know from my other posts. Hmmm OK

Well my name is Matt. I am from York, SC. I grew up here for 18 years as an advanced student, went to the University of South Carolina. Started as a Music Ed Major but couldnt deal with the politics in the music department, so I switched to History with a minor in the very gay theater. My sophmore year after being black balled from a frat because I was "different" I got invited to be in the Walt Disney World College Program. I spent one semester lifeguarding at Typhoon Lagoon. Then I transfered into Magic Kingdom Entertainment. I did that through college and into 1998. During this time I was SCUBA certified which still is a passion I have. Best dive so far is Costa Rica. Anyway, I work a couple months at Sea World in education, then at Rainforest Cafe taking care of the birds, 17000 gallons of salt water and teaching the education programs. In Orlando (fucking Orlando) I started teaching, in a most unsuccessful year. Then I had a bad car wreck which brought me back to SC. Floundered abit, managed an apartment complex in Charlotte and then taught for 1.5 years in Charlotte-Mecklenburg Schools....bad district. Then I moved to Alexandria, VA where I taught got 3 years in Fairfax County Public Schools, decided I missed my parents and moved back to SC. I taught for 3 quarters and realized I didnt miss my parents that much so went back to DC. Decided to teach at a charter school, and thats where my life hit rock bottom, and just keeps going. See the thread Thoughts on My Life, to pick up there.

I have 2 cats Calvin and Hobbes and one pup Suzie. Yeah I like the comic. I read a lot, mostly fantasy, I need to escape this world as much as possible. I love to eat out, unsweetened teah and key lime pie. Oh yeah, love to sleep.

And sexually I am a fiend ahahaha. No but it is fun,,,ok more than fun.

Single since I was 22. And don't see that changing ... ever  :P   Oh yeah, Im sarcastic....very sarcastic.....ok beyond sarcastic...its cost me jobs.

Anyway, thats kinda me in a nutshell.

Enjoying reading bout you guys :) Like this  thread!

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 Florida69

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  • Posts: 428
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #134 on: November 15, 2007, 11:13:02 AM »
I am 37 years old; I grew up in small towns along the South Carolina and Georgia border, mostly South Carolina where I own property.  I left home at the age of 15 and have been on my own ever since, continued my high school education traveled the country in the summers with carnivals during my youth, supported myself (kept myself in a good life style), and finally graduated from college with a bachelor's degree in the legal field right after I was diagnosed HIV+.  I am a victim to no one or nothing especially HIV, you have to make choices that have consequences and you have to live with those choices and consequences.  I have been working for an attorney in central Florida for over eight years.  I managed to pay for my education out of pocket and I was lucky enough to have bought personal health insurance years ago which although the meds and the insurance are expensive at around $750/mo with budgeting and cut backs my decision to buy private health insurances has allowed me to maintain my life style as I am an independent person.

I have been in a relationship with a wonderful man, who for the past 5+ years, he is negative.  I have been in other long term relationships in the past, where I lived with someone things tended to go sour after the first 3 years or so (in my opinion it was when we became codependent upon one another), I decided that I would have to date someone for a really long time and establish our individual lives as a couple, before I considered living with them.  My current boyfriend and I have talked about living together, but I do not think I am ready to coexist and I love having my own space and owning my home.  As of right now this relationship works for me, it is healthy and he has treated me better than any man has ever treated me before, even after we found out through me applying for life insurance that I was positive. 

I was infected by someone I dated (he did not know his status and took the condom off during sex) in between my ex and my current boyfriend, I tested negative right after the relationship ended and never tested again.  I met my current boyfriend thinking that I was in the clear, when we learned of my status needless to say we were floored, but we have managed to pick up the pieces and build a stronger friendship.  Like all relationships there are ups and downs, and many compromises that have to be understood and accepted.  Anything that I could possibly need or want, it is mine, and I never have to ask for it, love and respect are first and foremost. 

I first found support and I am lucky enough to be members of other forums, however I am also very fortunate to have wonderful people here that I care about and count on for support.  Any other questions, please feel free to ask, otherwise this is my story.  Donnie
Nothing in the world can take the place of Persistence. Talent will not; nothing is more common than unsuccessful men with talent. Genius will not; unrewarded genius is almost a proverb. Education will not; the world is full of educated derelicts. Persistence and determination alone are omnipotent. The slogan 'Press On' has solved and always will solve the problems of the human race.
Calvin Coolidge

Offline JPinLA

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  • Posts: 148
  • Cheers!
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #135 on: November 15, 2007, 01:18:27 PM »
Howdy folks...

I'm glad this thread has been bumped.  I have been a member here for just shy of 1 year.  In fact this month marks the one year anni of my HIV diagnosis.  Huh, time sure flies.  Anyway, I hardly ever post these days but I do come almost daily to read but I thought that this thread would be a perfect way to get back to it.

I am 35 years old, live in Los Angeles, have two little Yorkie pups and a lovely man to share my life with (10 years and counting).  I grew up on the east coast in NYC and Vermont and I went to college outside of Boston. 

I attended graduate school at USC and I am currently an analytical scientist for a large biotechnology company and have been for the last 9 years.  My area of expertise is cell biology but I am currently moving more toward epidemiology/biostatistics (riveting, I know). 

Life is busy – HIV or not – but I have a wonderful group of friends and family that makes a busy life much more manageable.  I travel quite often for work and vacation around the US and the EU but I have to say the best time spent is at home.  I eat and drink too much and exercise too little probably but I am enjoying myself for now.

I do a fair bit of public education/outreach work with LA’s GLBT center – not as much as I used to but still.

That's a bit about me – reads rather bland but that's the nutshell –

Love reading all the other posts and hope there's more to come

JP
11/06 - Diagnosed - VL/5784 & CD4 326
2/07 - VL/6000 & CD4 290 2/07
3//07 -Began Truvada/Viramune 
4/07 VL/undetectable and CD4 320 22%
7/07 VL/undetectable and CD4 286 22%
11/07 VL/undetectable and CD4 302 26%

Offline PaxPoz

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  • Posts: 6
  • Peace begins with oneself
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #136 on: November 19, 2007, 05:03:47 PM »
Short intro -

I been poz since probably around 1995 and diagnosed in late November 2001.  I'm healthy with good numbers.  Been lurking as a guest for a little while, but after seeing a couple of posts that I might have been interested in comment on, I decided to sign up. 

I'm partnered (triad, two of us are poz), gay, originally from the US southeast, currently living northwest of Chicago, IL.  I like gardening, camping, woodworking, sci-fi, knitting.

Paul aka PaxPoz


Offline planonstaying

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  • Posts: 169
  • Hiv is the FOX,tcells the rabbit, CALL the HOUNDS!
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #137 on: November 20, 2007, 11:03:57 AM »
My name is Bob  and i live in CT. i am a 46 years old.  I'd say i am gay but I like Girls too so I guess i am either a straight man who likes  guys or a Gay one that likes Girls. :o :P but what  I am not is bothered  by  my fickle preferences today.
   i am happily divorced. I take care of my Dad a bit, hang out a bit, go to a support group  and love NYC, computer games and movies of any genre as long as  they are good at  what they are trying to be. I used to be a lover of Free markets  but, then China taught me what you get  with unregulated capitolism when they started sending  us poisonous food, toothpaste and toys....so now  I am a died in the wool  income redistributing,  socialized medicine loving  democrat.
 I have had the same job 25 years and make a very decent living although  my benefits have been cut recently. When you work for a company that   goes from a 4 billion to 9 billion dollar venture in 5 years  that sure does taste sour when they do that.
I have been positive for about a year. I was  very sick with sero conversion illness when diagnosed  and  then  spent a bit of time battling depression. lately, i have felt great although  I have been drinking a bit  the last month and that  has  some potential to be problematic for me.  My labs  have been great. I had 1189 T cells  my last draw and have had a VL that ranged from undetectable to 2010 the last year. I also was diagnosed with Neuropathy ???. I guess it's unusual given my labs. Anyone who has it knows it sucks but,  dwelling on it  serves no purpose. I keep looking for the blood  when it feels like I am being stabbed  in the palms  of my hands and soles of my feet but alas no stigmata...I keep hoping though
Today, i am happy, smiling  and feel free....same as yesterday ;D
If someone tells you  potential consequences of a behavior  it  doesn't  mean they jude you or mit    they may just give a shit about you

Offline Peter6836

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  • Posts: 391
  • Me and my Granddaughter Noa
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #138 on: November 20, 2007, 01:24:28 PM »
Hi all,
Peter here been positive now for a year. Dealing with life pretty well. I have surrounded myself with people that love me and that i love. I lived a heterosexual life for 19 years married to a woman and have four grown children that I feel at times I raised myself. Before marriage I did have a relationship with a man that I loved. After I divorced I tried to find him. I was monogamous during my marriage. I discovered that he died two years earlier of aids.
I have dealt with bipolar disorder for years and find that it is getting worse. When I became single and my children were grown I had less to keep me focused. Well I was not one to have sex very often even in my new found single life. But in one of my bipolar manic moments I did something stupid. Now here I am.
I have a grandchild that is a wonder in my life. I have taken in one of my friends to live with me and be my companion and company. I have moved close to my family. I have had problems in my life and dealing with all of this I lost my car my house and had my share of financial problems due to time in the hospital. I have spent the last three holidays in the hospital for over a month each year. This year I am working on having the best holiday ever. I take all my meds and see my doctors regularly, I have what I consider to be good doctors. I work daily continue to teach. I wanted to return to school and get another degree but this just does not seem to be the time for me. I can not handle it  too much stress and fatigue. So I move on and attempt to enjoy each and every day I have.
Peter

Offline Paulette

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  • Posts: 112
Re: Introduce yourself and meet others!
« Reply #139 on: November 24, 2007, 10:32:01 AM »
Well I've already done this in the Poz Women
but since you guys aren't suppose to be there, I'll give a little intro here.

Hi all, I'm Paulette, I'm 37 with three very beautiful girls 17,15,8 they are my reason for fighting so hard. I was Dx: 11/7/2003 and i can say that's a day i now celebrate, because living with Hiv has taught me a lot of things. To love a little deeper, to stop a smell the flowers, watch a bird fly, and to really change my life.  In some sort of crazy way HIV has saved my life. at least giving me a better one. crazy i know, I was infected by husband who knew his status when we got married and just because we had that I'm safe how about you talk(well all i can say he wasn't honest).My bad should have demanded to see his clean bill of health. we were married for 5 years and I'm one of those how dare you do this shit to me types and i can say that i let my anger get the best of me (and sent his ass to prison for infecting me) well I've learned that it didn't make it go away. all that did was send the man i loved to prison.  We are divorced now and I've remarried to a man whom i know loves me but something still is missing. He neg and he knows my status and has from day one.  I've  have forgiving the one who infected me and after being in the forums i somehow have an understanding to why he did it.( i know he loved me and he was afraid of losing me if he told me) one can't turn back the hand of times. so now I try to educate people and I'm very open about my status. I've been drug free for over 3 years now. and I'm loving life now more than every now. I grown over the past four years, funny it took this little virus to make me grow up. Well enough about me, I just want to say thanks for putting somethings in prospective for me guys, and i look forward to reading more of your post.
May God Bless Each and Everyone and for ever keep you in his eternal Love.
Peace and Love
Paulette
I have HIV; it doesn't me;)

 


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