Quantcast

Subscribe to:
POZ magazine
Newsletters
Join POZ: Facebook MySpace Twitter Pinterest
Tumblr Google+ Flickr Instagram
POZ Personals
Sign In / Join
Username:
Password:
Welcome, Guest. Please login or register.
November 28, 2014, 01:48:35 PM

Login with username, password and session length


Members
Stats
  • Total Posts: 647737
  • Total Topics: 49365
  • Online Today: 210
  • Online Ever: 585
  • (January 07, 2014, 02:31:47 PM)
Users Online
Users: 6
Guests: 161
Total: 167

Welcome


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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

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

Author Topic: blessing in disguise?  (Read 22772 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

Offline kellybryana

  • Member
  • Posts: 97
blessing in disguise?
« on: February 01, 2011, 11:13:26 PM »
I read a lot of the threads in these forums, and so far I read a lot about the hardships of this disease. Frankly, I'm scared! Reading about the crazy medical bills, side effects of treatment, cost of treatment, stigma, etc. is very troubling. There MUST be people out there who have been living with HIV for years and have come to see HIV as a blessing in disguise. Anyone?!?!
 ??? ??? ???



Online Jeff G

  • Administrator
  • Member
  • Posts: 12,841
  • How am I doing Beren ?
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #1 on: February 01, 2011, 11:22:26 PM »
I have my days when I mostly dwell on the the fact that I survived this long and count my blessings , I also have days when I remember to be thankful for all I have when so many others do without and suffer .

Dealing with adversity can sometimes have character building aspects to it but I find it hard after losing so many friends and struggling like I have to call having HIV a blessing in disguise , I just cant see it that way .         
« Last Edit: February 01, 2011, 11:24:27 PM by jg1962 »

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,852
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #2 on: February 01, 2011, 11:38:28 PM »
Blessing in disguise?  I don't think so.  If HIV is a blessing, the price it extracts is beyond comprehension. Hundreds of dead friends and lovers, an almost infinite list of maladies surrounding HIV, along with declining health, advanced aging and medical complications too numerous to mention.  Finding that a good day is when I do not shit myself while out in public, assuming I can muster the strength to go out.  Suffering an incredible loss of quality of live...  if this is a blessing, I would sure hate to see a curse.
« Last Edit: February 01, 2011, 11:40:09 PM by killfoile »

Offline buginme2

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,229
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #3 on: February 01, 2011, 11:40:35 PM »
I dont know about blessing.  However, it has caused me to re-evaluate some things.  I've put more attention in finishing grad school, I've put more effort into changing jobs into one that is more enjoyable.  It has caused me to try and do things that I may have put off before.  I am relatively newly diagnosed though.  I wonder what some LTS's would say
Don't be fancy, just get dancey

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,852
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #4 on: February 01, 2011, 11:45:07 PM »
I wonder what some LTS's would say

The two posts above yours are from LTS.

Offline jkinatl2

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,007
  • Doo. Dah. Dipp-ity.
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #5 on: February 02, 2011, 12:13:58 AM »
As an LTS, I leave it to those diagnosed recently, to whom hopefully life will be far easier, to call it a "blessing in Disguise."

Any blessing that takes from me my friends and loved ones, many from this very site, is a disguised one, indeed.

Sure, like any major life change, it can cause someone to rethink their priorities and perhaps even strive to do/be better.

But for those of us who have had this illness for over a decade, I can assure you that any positive life changes are mitigated by experimental drug therapies, socially and financially crippling issues, mental and physical deterioration, and funerals. God, that smell of flower-spray and ancient perfume, sitting in church after church while strangers gamely pontificate on the life and works of people they barely knew.

I'd undo this "blessing" and be the person I was on track towards becoming in 1993 in a heartbeat.

I know what you are asking, and what you are looking for. But giving this pathogen the power to change the world, or a person, in the positive is, IMHO, giving it power. I don't want to do that. It's a disease. And a wretched one, for those living in the US (and other underfunded countries where healthcare is not a right).

You can survive this. Especially as a recently diagnosed person. I would be hard-pressed to find a LTS who embraces it as a blessing. It seems that only the strongest, the orneriest, the angriest, the most stubborn of us have survived to "achieve" LTS standing.

And many of us stand awkwardly, on canes, on feet that feel full of glass, with bodies and hearts misshapen by early HAART and the accumulation of grief like snowstorms on our shoulders.

For those diagnosed recently, I implore you to make the changes in our healthcare system necessary to sustain you - so that the spike in insurance does not mark you for termination in your employment, so that your meds do not break you financially. So that kissing someone is not a felony.

We - the collective community - have much to do in the years ahead. But it is YOU, the newly diagnosed, who have the physical strength to see it done. Seriously, it's up to you.

Can YOU make this a blessing? I doubt it. But you can be an angel in the wilderness. You can be a hero. You can make a difference. THAT is a blessing, no matter the source.



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

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline drewm

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,169
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #6 on: February 02, 2011, 12:28:40 AM »
I would not call HIV/AIDS a blessing in disguise, however, I would be foolish not to see some upsides in my situation. Having this virus has forced lifestyle changes, forced me to see a doctor on a regular basis and to take better care of myself. In all honesty, I was sicker than a dog with this virus for years, doing drugs and acting like an idiot before being diagnosed and now, thank God, I am healthier than I have been in years.

I wish I had chosen another course in life but there are upsides, for me, that have come with this diagnoses. I enjoy life much more, taking time to enjoy family and friends and not taking things for granted.
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline tednlou2

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,054
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #7 on: February 02, 2011, 12:36:08 AM »
I have heard some here and elsewhere say HIV was a blessing, because it caused them to get sober, or repair relationships, get healthier, or be a better person.  It is like when cancer survivors say cancer was the best thing that happened to them--for many of the same reasons.  It seems like such a strange thing to say.  I'll see them on some TV show discussing how awful the diagnosis was and all the hell they went through.  They will also be there discussing a cure.  It leaves many to think why talk about a cure, if it was the best thing to happen to you.  We should all get cancer.  I think many of them only say that, because they survived--obviously.  If it were possible to go back in time and give them a choice, I doubt many of them would still take the cancer.  It also reminds me of people who were bullied due to being overweight.  They will say how awful the bullying was, but then say the name calling caused them to work out and lose the weight.  It is hard to comprehend the mixed message.  

So far, I don't see HIV as a blessing.  I wish I could see it that way.  It hasn't improved my life.  I don't take better care of myself.  I've actually gone the other direction.  I've stopped working out and doing all the physical things I use to do like hiking, biking, swimming, etc.  I've actually gained weight and gotten out of shape.  I do get labs done regularly, but I could have done that being neg.  Well, I did quit smoking, so there's that.  I've always been nice to people (for the most part) and concerned about others.  I think HIV has made me more sympathetic and empathetic to people who are sick with something and people who don't have access to healthcare.  That is probably the only thing I can point to as a benefit--I've become more educated about what happens to people who are sick and who don't have access to healthcare.

  

Offline Matty the Damned

  • Member
  • Posts: 12,239
  • Ninja Please
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #8 on: February 02, 2011, 01:18:31 AM »
I have heard some here and elsewhere say HIV was a blessing, because it caused them to get sober, or repair relationships, get healthier, or be a better person.  It is like when cancer survivors say cancer was the best thing that happened to them--for many of the same reasons.  It seems like such a strange thing to say.  I'll see them on some TV show discussing how awful the diagnosis was and all the hell they went through.  They will also be there discussing a cure.  It leaves many to think why talk about a cure, if it was the best thing to happen to you.  We should all get cancer.  I think many of them only say that, because they survived--obviously.  If it were possible to go back in time and give them a choice, I doubt many of them would still take the cancer.  It also reminds me of people who were bullied due to being overweight.  They will say how awful the bullying was, but then say the name calling caused them to work out and lose the weight.  It is hard to comprehend the mixed message.  

So far, I don't see HIV as a blessing.  I wish I could see it that way.  It hasn't improved my life.  I don't take better care of myself.  I've actually gone the other direction.  I've stopped working out and doing all the physical things I use to do like hiking, biking, swimming, etc.  I've actually gained weight and gotten out of shape.  I do get labs done regularly, but I could have done that being neg.  Well, I did quit smoking, so there's that.  I've always been nice to people (for the most part) and concerned about others.  I think HIV has made me more sympathetic and empathetic to people who are sick with something and people who don't have access to healthcare.  That is probably the only thing I can point to as a benefit--I've become more educated about what happens to people who are sick and who don't have access to healthcare.

There's hope for you yet Theodora. :)

MtD

Offline surf18

  • Member
  • Posts: 525
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #9 on: February 02, 2011, 05:37:52 AM »
Dx'd in June. I find zero blessing in disquise in this. Not a day goes by that I don't long for my "old" life back. A life where I was happy go lucky, without the burden of thinking of this thing 24/7.

Offline wolfter

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,707
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #10 on: February 02, 2011, 05:41:36 AM »
I haven't found that yet, but feel very fortunate compared to so many others who suferred horribly before passing.  Maybe the next 20 years of living with HIV will be much better than the first 20.  

Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline GSOgymrat

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,047
  • HIV+ since 1993. INTJ
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #11 on: February 02, 2011, 06:44:52 AM »
I've had HIV since 1993. There is nothing good about it.

Offline hope_for_a_cure

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,502
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #12 on: February 02, 2011, 07:58:31 AM »
I dont see being HIV+ as a blessing in any way shape or form.  The blessing for me (if there is one) is how my family has been supportive, but I think they would have been so if I had been diagnosed with an other illness, not just HIV. 


Offline Ann

  • Administrator
  • Member
  • Posts: 28,140
  • It just is, OK?
    • Num is sum qui mentiar tibi?
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #13 on: February 02, 2011, 09:27:01 AM »
Being diagnosed with hiv was the kick in the ass I needed to do some serious work on my self-esteem issues. I believe my low self-esteem was directly related to becoming infected - I didn't think enough of myself to stand up for myself and insist on fidelity and/or condoms.

I figured insisting on either would leave me on my own. While I might have been correct about that, in retrospect it would have been far better to be alone than hiv positive.

In the first few months following my diagnosis, I did a lot of "navel gazing", tracing the roots of my low self-esteem and insecurities back to my childhood. Once I figured out where it all stemmed from, I realised it was a load of rubbish and lies that I didn't need in my life.

I'm an awful lot happier and emotionally stable as a result. I have a lot more friends now too, real friends - now that I'm not the needy, clinging wreck I used to be. My love life has also improved 100% in every aspect. Every aspect.

I suppose at a push you could call that facet of my infection a "blessing in disguise", but really, hiv is no blessing. I could have gotten to the same place emotionally without this damn virus.

It's a shame I didn't get to where I'm at now before I acquired my infection, because I'd most likely still be hiv negative if I had. C'est la vie, c'est l'amour, c'est la guerre, c'est la mort, say no more!
Condoms are a girl's best friend

Condom and Lube Info  



"...health will finally be seen not as a blessing to be wished for, but as a human right to be fought for." Kofi Annan

Nymphomaniac: a woman as obsessed with sex as an average man. Mignon McLaughlin

HIV is certainly character-building. It's made me see all of the shallow things we cling to, like ego and vanity. Of course, I'd rather have a few more T-cells and a little less character. Randy Shilts

Offline woodshere

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,477
  • ain't no shame in my game
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #14 on: February 02, 2011, 09:37:34 AM »
I think some of us try to find the silver lining in the cloud or something good from something bad.  Would I rather be HIV- of course, but since I am stuck with the virus might as well make the best of it.  My HIV cloud does have some silver lining.  I have had the wonderful experience for 3 years now of volunteering for AIDS Lifecycle, a fundraising week long bike ride from SF to LA.  Had I not been poz I would not have participated and not made some very dear friends.  I have met some great people in Louisville via a poz social group and had some very fun times with them.  I have a great dr that I see on a regular basis and am paying more attention to my health, haven't made all the changes I need too, but I am at least more aware of what I should be doing.  And believe it or not I have actually dated more since becoming poz, as well as expanding my sexual horizons (which has been a very good thing).

A blessing probably not, but there have been opportunities for some good to come from it.
"Let us give pubicity to HV/AIDS and not hide it..." "One of the things destroying people with AIDS is the stigma we attach to it."   Nelson Mandela

Offline richie

  • Member
  • Posts: 69
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #15 on: February 02, 2011, 12:27:27 PM »
I read a lot of the threads in these forums, and so far I read a lot about the hardships of this disease. Frankly, I'm scared! Reading about the crazy medical bills, side effects of treatment, cost of treatment, stigma, etc. is very troubling. There MUST be people out there who have been living with HIV for years and have come to see HIV as a blessing in disguise. Anyone?!?!
 ??? ??? ???




It's been said in various ways in the posts above.  But it's really simple.  Look at it this way:

1.  Having ANY illness can cause you to reevaluate your situation, and lift your head out of the clouds, so to speak.  It forces you to observe more than the daily drudgery of live, and evaluate what's important to you.  Life is short.

2.  For those of us who have been around awhile, AIDS is different because it's taken away many of our friends, and a generation was decimated.  History was changed (literally) in the arts and other areas where people perished in severe numbers.  A silver lining?  No.  Even if you're young enough to not have experienced it, or ignorant about what has happened. 

Having said that, being young is in your favor, as today's HIV is vastly different than yesterday's AIDs.  Problems?  Yes.  Death sentence?  No.  But in facing problems, you'll undoubtedly become a stronger and better person.  Maybe that's your silver lining.

Offline leatherman

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,310
  • Google and HIV meds are Your Friends
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #16 on: February 02, 2011, 12:50:27 PM »
fending off a terminal illness for nearly two decades (that nearly won a couple of times) has nothing about it that could be considered a blessing. As others have mentioned about their lives and experiences, in the here and now, I deal with too many years of illness and too many lost friends.

But even if I had never had a day of sickness, the fact that HIV/AIDS killed and took away from me my two long-term partners :'( is enough to prove there's no blessing about it whatsoever.

However, no one ever promised me prior to HIV, that my life would be a bed of roses either. Matter of fact my parents and the Baptist church told me that times in my future would be hard and would be a test of my strength and character to get through. Know what? Without even imagining that I'd end up with AIDS, they were still right. ;) My life has had a lot of rough moments that tried my soul - many associated with being poz, and quite a few times that had nothing at all to do with HIV.

I don't think you're going to get an answer that you might have liked because I just don't think there's some big karma-related reason for being HIV poz and your life turning out all hunky-dory. There's no "I survived AIDS for a reason" BS.

There's only the fact that it hasn't killed me (or you) yet. So any "blessing in disguise" that comes from being positive, I think has to do with what I, or you, make of our lives. ;)

If you let this hardship drag you down by dwelling on the possible negative outcomes, by worrying over imagined future illness or side effects, by retreating into yourself, by not accepting that this is your "new life" which is the consequence of your own actions, then having HIV will be a burden that will drag your soul and spirit down even in the best of times - so how will you ever endure the worst of times when the HIV actually poses problems in your life? ???

However, if you use this hardship in your life to make yourself a better person, to enjoy your life more, to be a better friend, to improve your mind, to make healthier choices, to be an activist helping prevent others from being in this situation or helping others to obtain meds to have quality of life, well then you have shown great character and have made being positive into as much of a blessing as it can be; and you'll build up the strength you'll need to endure the bad times.
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


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

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,852
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #17 on: February 02, 2011, 01:06:17 PM »
However, if you use this hardship in your life to make yourself a better person, to enjoy your life more, to be a better friend, to improve your mind, to make healthier choices, to be an activist helping prevent others from being in this situation or helping others to obtain meds to have quality of life, well then you have shown great character and have made being positive into as much of a blessing as it can be; and you'll build up the strength you'll need to endure the bad times.

Very well said.

Offline mecch

  • Member
  • Posts: 12,079
  • red pill? or blue pill?
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #18 on: February 02, 2011, 01:55:31 PM »
Which of these challenges do you face presently or in the near future?  As a newly diagnosed person, its good not to take on all the worries at once.

As for the blessing? Well, there is something to be said for the benefits of overcoming difficulties that life can put in your path, so there are good things to come out of an HIV infection, just like dealing successfully with any other crap that might happen in life.  Doesn't mean the crap is a value.

Anyway, its just a deadly virus, millions have it, and there are effective treatments if you can get them. 
“From each, according to his ability; to each, according to his need” 1875 K Marx

Offline Buckmark

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,567
  • Would you like to tie me up with your ties, Ty?
    • Henry's Home Page
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #19 on: February 02, 2011, 02:04:27 PM »
I read a lot of the threads in these forums, and so far I read a lot about the hardships of this disease. Frankly, I'm scared! Reading about the crazy medical bills, side effects of treatment, cost of treatment, stigma, etc. is very troubling. There MUST be people out there who have been living with HIV for years and have come to see HIV as a blessing in disguise. Anyone?!?!
 ??? ??? ???

You should have a certain amount of fear when you have HIV.  It's a life-threatening disease.  The consequences are serious -- not only to your physical health, but potentially to your relationships and finances as well.  Many nowadays are lulled into thinking that it is simple to manage.  While we are fortunate to have more and better treatments (if you have access to them), until we have a cure it doesn't basic nature of HIV and AIDS.

So what do you do with the fear?  Take action.  Be proactive with your health.  Take advantage of the improved treatments we have these days.  Become more compassionate and supportive of others who have HIV.  Like other serious hardships you have or will face, you decide how to react, and that influences your outcome.  Sometimes, and ideally, this will lead to make other decisions which improve your life, career, relationships and yourself in other ways.  That is what I call making the best of a bad situation.

But I can't see HIV as a blessing.  Over the past 22 years, I've seen too much death, destruction and hardship to see it that way.  Yet I have learned how to make the best of a bad situation, and I suspect you will too.

Regards,

Henry


"Life in Lubbock, Texas, taught me two things:
     One is that God loves you and you're going to burn in hell.
     The other is that sex is the most awful, filthy thing on earth and you should save it for someone you love."
- Butch Hancock, Musician, The Flatlanders

Offline leatherman

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,310
  • Google and HIV meds are Your Friends
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #20 on: February 02, 2011, 02:12:19 PM »
Anyway, its just a deadly virus
::) LOL
nothing like downplaying it to take away it's power, huh? :D
leatherman (aka mIkIE)


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

Offline newt

  • Member
  • Posts: 3,887
  • the one and original newt
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #21 on: February 02, 2011, 03:42:35 PM »
Quote
Being diagnosed with hiv was the kick in the ass I needed to do some serious work on my self-esteem issues.

Agreed.

But would be nice if it was just a kick up the ass not a lifelong virus thing, like, perhaps, yer mum dissing yer marmalade in the judging at the local fete, or your man/woman emptying yer bank account and doing a runner with their salsa trainer. There are easier ways to decide to pull yourself together.

Make rare metal of blood and bone, all art requires sacrifice, except today, just now, I wish the art of being good at being HIV-positive was not my day in day out existence.

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

Offline eric48

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,202
  • @HIVPharmaCure & tinyurl.com/HIVPharmaCure
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #22 on: February 02, 2011, 05:21:31 PM »
To me:

Sword of Damocles from day 1

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Damocles

When I got diagnosed, I passed out.

more than 25 years eluding the threat, now almost a year in feeling the tip of the sword onto my skull

A blessing in disguise? ? ? ? ?

Eric

PS: many thanks to BigPharma and all those who contributed in giving me a second chance

PPS:
Does not Dionysius seem to have made it sufficiently clear that there can be nothing happy for the person over whom some fear always looms? - Cicero
« Last Edit: February 02, 2011, 05:24:43 PM by eric48 »
NVP/ABC/3TC/... UD; CD4 > 1000; CD4/CD8 ~ 2.0   safety stock : 3 months (2013: FOTO= 5d. ON 2d. OFF ; 2014: NCT02157311 = 4d. ON, 3d. OFF)

Offline drewm

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,169
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #23 on: February 02, 2011, 05:44:56 PM »
However, if you use this hardship in your life to make yourself a better person, to enjoy your life more, to be a better friend, to improve your mind, to make healthier choices, to be an activist helping prevent others from being in this situation or helping others to obtain meds to have quality of life, well then you have shown great character and have made being positive into as much of a blessing as it can be; and you'll build up the strength you'll need to endure the bad times.

Well said!
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline kellybryana

  • Member
  • Posts: 97
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #24 on: February 02, 2011, 11:06:48 PM »
wow, thats a lot of responses. I respect everyone's experiences, and appreciate the time you took to respond. I am choosing to look at this as a blessing in disguise, though.  I don't know if I would have ever gotten the kick in the ass to look at my life the way HIV has forced me to look at it. I've had to completely rearrange my priorities and re evaluate every aspect of my life. Sure I could have done the work to make myself a better person without having been diagnosed with this ridiculous virus, but would I have? I don't know...

I am choosing to look at this as what I need to go through to become the person I was meant to be. Character is built through surviving hardships, and you find out who you truly are in the face of adversity. I refuse to let this take my optimism and my spirit. I will thrive.

I appreciate the scientific advances that have been made in the last 20 years to improve the quality of life of people infected with HIV today, and I am truly sorry about the hardships the LTSer's have had to endure these last decades. However, I am very thankful that with the advances in medicine, my experience with HIV will be much different.

Here' life according to Kelly: We are all going to die. Everyone is going to get some kind of disease at some point. Everyone has problems. This is my problem now...who's to say that my situation is worse than anyone elses? And why am I going to let this get the best of me? I will find something to be thankful for every day of my life, even if it is simply that I have fingers to type this response. I will fight for my happiness, and I will give more to this world than I can even imagine. I've had a very good life, and I know that my best days are yet to come.

Offline surf18

  • Member
  • Posts: 525
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #25 on: February 02, 2011, 11:15:52 PM »
I will say kelly you have a great attitude. I too had this virus make me smell the roses so to speak. I too also wish my kick came an easier fashion.

Offline jkinatl2

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,007
  • Doo. Dah. Dipp-ity.
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #26 on: February 02, 2011, 11:40:47 PM »
I am very thankful that with the advances in medicine, my experience with HIV will be much different.


I am glad for this as well. Sadly, you do have a lot of fighting ahead of you. Maybe not for the existence of meds, but if you are in the USA, access to them may or may not be an issue.  There are a lot of tips and tricks to make certain you get access to meds, and when/if the time comes for you to start, who knows? The government might have developed a means by which people can have a viable and ctive life with HIV, and not be worried about getting laid off, or changing jobs, or anything else that might interrupt the necessary flow of medications.

That sort of activism takes guts, brains, and stamina. Congrats! You have those! Many of us still have guts, and even a few brain cells, but stamina? Not as much. It's really up to you and this current generation of pozzies to change the system - make HIV meds affordable for everyone. Make healthcare a right. Make it possible to work where you want, how you want, as long as you want, without HIV meds making those decisions for you.

Make this a non-issue. We are here to help, as best as we can :)

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

-Kimberly Page-Shafer, PhD, MPH

Welcome Thread

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,852
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #27 on: February 03, 2011, 12:01:29 AM »
wow, thats a lot of responses. I respect everyone's experiences, and appreciate the time you took to respond. I am choosing to look at this as a blessing in disguise, though.  I don't know if I would have ever gotten the kick in the ass to look at my life the way HIV has forced me to look at it. I've had to completely rearrange my priorities and re evaluate every aspect of my life. Sure I could have done the work to make myself a better person without having been diagnosed with this ridiculous virus, but would I have? I don't know...

I am choosing to look at this as what I need to go through to become the person I was meant to be. Character is built through surviving hardships, and you find out who you truly are in the face of adversity. I refuse to let this take my optimism and my spirit. I will thrive.

Kelly,

I salute your spirit and commitment to thrive, in spite of your HIV, but I believe that it is not the HIV that has bestowed any blessing, rather it is your reaction to life altering news.  For me, HIV has brought me nothing but pain and sorrow, whereas my reaction to these challenges has enriched my life beyond description.  I view my HIV as simply a virus, that if given the chance, will surely kill me.  A mindless virus, has no ability to instill anything in anyone, however, since it also represents a truly life-altering event, it does have the potential to challenge us and it is how we choose, to meet that challenge, that can be a blessing.

As others have said, if you accept your infection and use the challenges presented, assuming you are successful, you will grow in so many ways and some of them will not even be evident to you.  When I look back on some of the challenges I have faced, it was my faith in my medical care, friends and lovers that helped to pull me through, but none of that would have mattered, if I did not have faith in myself.

I think some of this is just a case of semantics, because we all seem to center on life after diagnosis and to be honest, the ones who are the most adaptable and possess the internal strength are generally those who eventually thrive with HIV.  Ultimately, all that matters is accepting and treating your HIV infection and if you choose to view positive life changes, as a "blessing in disguise", then more power to you.  The point is not just what you believe, but how you translate those beliefs into meaningful actions.

Offline drewm

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,169
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #28 on: February 03, 2011, 09:23:52 PM »
You can choose to see the glass half full or the glass half empty. Like Cher, "if I could turn back time," but I cannot. I choose to live each day to the fullest and get everything out of this life that I can. I like your outlook and it sounds like we have a lot in common.

Keep your spirits up and your eye on your health. You are worth it and thanks for asking and sharing!
Diagnosed in  May of 2010 with teh AIDS.

PCP Pneumonia . CD4 8 . VL 500,000

ATRIPLA - VALTREX -  FLUOXETINE - FENOFIBRATE


Numbers consistent since 12/2010 - VL has remained undetectable and CD4 is anywhere from 275-325

Offline roy100

  • Member
  • Posts: 123
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #29 on: February 04, 2011, 10:12:17 AM »
The blessing part is finding out you have it , instead of going arround spreading the desease.

Then you begin to fill better and be as normal as one ca be.

Read all the answears from killfoile, he is my Guru.
Anything he says has wisdon.
Gretings Killfoile, you are an inspiration to me , and that is a blessing !
Diagnosed 18Th March 2010
March 30Th VL +100,000 CD4 46
CD8T  575 CD8 %60.6
On Truvada and Kaletra. . Remeron 15mg  and150 mg  wellbutrin xl for depression. Clonazepan 2 mg to sleep. Omeprazole 20  once a day.
July 17 2010 Vl 362 CD4 155, 6.4 %
CD8T suppressors 1482 CD8% 61.1
 Nov 16 2010: V l 937 CD4 188,10%
CD8T Suppresors 997 CD8%55.8
August 15th 2011 Vl UD, less than 40.
CD4:543(26.7%) CD8:887 (43.6 %) Ratio .61
Jan 14th,2012 ,less than 40.
CD4:478 (24.4%) CD8: 962 (49.1%) Ratio.50
June 2012 CD4 599, CD8 856 UD
Oct 2013 CD 702, CD 843 UD Ratio:.87

Offline Cliff

  • Member
  • Posts: 2,645
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #30 on: February 04, 2011, 10:17:10 AM »
Getting older, and all the experiences I've gone through since 2003, has made me a better person, maybe, but not HIV.

Offline woodshere

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,477
  • ain't no shame in my game
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #31 on: February 04, 2011, 11:57:17 AM »
Call it whatever you want, look at it however you want, after all it is your HIV journey.  Do what it takes to travel it.
"Let us give pubicity to HV/AIDS and not hide it..." "One of the things destroying people with AIDS is the stigma we attach to it."   Nelson Mandela

Offline steps

  • Member
  • Posts: 12
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #32 on: February 04, 2011, 10:07:36 PM »
I read a lot of the threads in these forums, and so far I read a lot about the hardships of this disease. Frankly, I'm scared! Reading about the crazy medical bills, side effects of treatment, cost of treatment, stigma, etc. is very troubling. There MUST be people out there who have been living with HIV for years and have come to see HIV as a blessing in disguise. Anyone?!?!
 ??? ??? ???



I have been "living" with HIV for 23 years have also been on 4 different med combo's some have had bad side effects the combo i am on now so far has had few  if any noticable side effects.
Yes the cost is by far way too high for meds . There is coming up a way of knowing what will be least harmful in side effects and most helpful in treating the HIV its called gene testing this may become the brenchmark for treatment selection.
Aside from the medical there is the living with HIV. When I was told of my being positive in those days it was like receiving a death sentence, there was almost nothing that worked as a treatment.
To add to this i had just buried my partner of 19 years who died a very bad and terrible death from AIDS.
I was alone with no close freinds nor any family since most of my birth family was gone.
I had spend most of my entire life doing for others .
Something clicked in my head that had been in there hidding for a very long time.
I told myself "If this is the end of my life then I will live it as me and not prejudge anyone and will have no one prejuding me.  Having felt hurt from others I will give no hurt to any nor will i allow it upon me.
I am a person of worth as is others and I will not be viewed as a person un-worthy.
I feel no shame or gulit from being HIV it as in fact taught me the value of life.
I learned of my own mortality and in so doing it taught me to live.
Facing the possibly of my own death was and is the best teacher i never knew.
I met others like me. I met people who wanted nothing from me other then to be a friend.
I found the best love of my love and have been together for over 11 years now.
I do not lie about my HIV I enjoy the friends I have and am glad to have them.
After 23 years it has taught be more then a life of wealth or endless health could of ever of taught me.
You are a person of worth HIV is a part of that, it can be a great teacher when you see your possiblies came not from having HIV but from knowing you have it.
Being positive does not mean you are HIV it means you are positive about yourself.
It takes only a few times of knowing this to learned it.

Offline carousel

  • Member
  • Posts: 821
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #33 on: February 05, 2011, 08:01:58 AM »
If there was no HIV, what would I do with my time?

Hours reading about stuff that will probably never happen me, watching videos on Youtube of people wanting to share their stories of hope and self diagnosing my latest disorder from DSM1V.  Add to that, the time I would save recycling at the bottle bank.

It doesn't bare thinking about.


Offline DangerBoyXIII

  • Member
  • Posts: 9
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #34 on: February 05, 2011, 02:44:20 PM »
I was diagnosed about 3yrs ago.  I'm coming up on my anniversary actually! 

I haven't suffered from any illnesses as of yet and I don't feel any different then I did when I was negative.  At least, not physically.  Mentally it's been challenging. 

I've outted my status to a few people and even to a boyfriend.  When we broke up he made threats to expose me.  He knew going into it that I was positive and didn't have an issue with it.  However, things got ugly when I uncovered his web of lies.  I don't date and this ex of mine is the reason why.  I don't trust anyone.  I think I've become more paranoid now more so then before.  Finding other HIV positive people has been rough since I do live in a small town.  When I do manage to connect with people I never allow it to go further then platonic friendship. 

I am super lucky that I live in Pennsylvania and I am on a special insurance plan that pays for my lab work and my atripla.  I wish everyone was as fortunate. 

I wish I could turn back time.  I'd save everyone that I've lost and fix my self esteem so I'd know I deserved better then I gave myself credit for.  But that won't be happening.  It's not a blessing for me.  But it's not a horrible thing for me yet.  It's a call for a lifestyle change I desperately needed and a chance to slow my life down!!

Offline wolfter

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,707
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #35 on: February 05, 2011, 02:57:42 PM »
Perhaps now that we've had this thread a few days, I'm beginning to have a feel for what the OP was asking.  Perhaps it was being asked if we've had anything positive come from the disease.  I'll never call it a blessing, but I have gained mental maturity that I'm sure would have been left undiscovered if not forced so deep within myself.  The arrogant, vane and judgmental self died a long time ago. (He comes out on those rare occasions when needed) So yes, there have been positives that came back, but certainly nothing I'd call a blessing.
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline surf18

  • Member
  • Posts: 525
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #36 on: February 05, 2011, 03:17:39 PM »
i find myself in the poster that said what would he do without hiv?what would he read.ha
wolfer good points.
the hiv has made me slow down smelll the roses. i had some great vacations after dx in july,had a great christmas season. as i allowed myself to sit back and enjoy life.
i have learned a new better way of living. now in my perfect world i would love to be in perfect health which is neg and keep this wonderful new way of life i live.that is what i think about all the time.

Offline surf18

  • Member
  • Posts: 525
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #37 on: February 05, 2011, 03:19:18 PM »
i also want to add too
look we all knew the threat of this thing was out there and im sure when we were neg we thought about what it would be like if we got it ,how it would feel. for me personally its way worse than i could have imagined way worse but yet its also not as bad as i have imagined.does that make any sense?

Offline wolfter

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,707
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #38 on: February 05, 2011, 03:29:45 PM »
Surf, I'm sure you're going to get all kinda flack for that one.  I won't since I'm no longer judgmental....lol  For many of us LTS, we DIDN'T know it was out there.  When we first heard about this new illlness striking out west, we had no idea it would affect places like rural West Virginia.  I guess being older now, I'd like to think I'd be wise enough to take extra precautions if we had the knowledge that exists now.  Maybe?  Probably not. 
Complacency is the enemy.  ;)  Challenge yourself daily for maximum  return on investment.

Offline eric48

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,202
  • @HIVPharmaCure & tinyurl.com/HIVPharmaCure
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #39 on: February 05, 2011, 04:31:14 PM »
how it would feel. for me personally its way worse than i could have imagined way worse but yet its also not as bad as i have imagined.does that make any sense?

does that make any sense?

may sound awkward and offensive to the old timers, but, as a newly infected, me also, I kind of feel the same as surf

Eric
« Last Edit: February 05, 2011, 06:08:17 PM by eric48 »
NVP/ABC/3TC/... UD; CD4 > 1000; CD4/CD8 ~ 2.0   safety stock : 3 months (2013: FOTO= 5d. ON 2d. OFF ; 2014: NCT02157311 = 4d. ON, 3d. OFF)

Offline surf18

  • Member
  • Posts: 525
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #40 on: February 05, 2011, 06:00:09 PM »
oh god no. i dont mean any disrespect. this shit sucks big time and when i say not as bad as i thought im thinking me mentally able to handle it. not the illness it self.
there is no mistaken this ,this illness sucks shit big time ,

and us newbies should have knowen better ,just like people that smoke, we knew what caused this and should have been more careful.

but no disrespect meant whatsoever.
and like i said too its worse than i ever thought mentally to have this too.

Offline elf

  • Member
  • Posts: 617
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #41 on: February 05, 2011, 07:32:05 PM »
I am fine as long as I don't think of myself as a sick person. I try to think that the only difference between me and another person is my taking medication every day at 6 p.m.
I try to survive like this, if it wasn't so, I would be going crazy and end up in a psychiatric institution.

But everytime I hear people say ''people get AIDS and die in a few years'' or ''AIDS is the most terrifying thing you can get'' I'm all down to Earth, I feel lonely and depressed.  :-\

Sometimes I think it is those people who want me do die quick, as if they were paying for my medication and think ''it's too costly for our government''...

So, medically speaking I'm kinda okayish (my doctor says: ''Your healthy with 1000 cells'', but
people around me, the society has that ugly: you have AIDS so die quick approach which makes me really sad and depressed. It is them who make me feel like shit, that's for I've been avoiding most people and have only a handful friends left.  ???

Offline elf

  • Member
  • Posts: 617
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #42 on: February 05, 2011, 07:47:27 PM »
Being diagnosed with hiv was the kick in the ass I needed to do some serious work on my self-esteem issues. I believe my low self-esteem was directly related to becoming infected - I didn't think enough of myself to stand up for myself and insist on fidelity and/or condoms.

Same here.

Now, I don't really care about what other people say. :)
They want me to be sad and devastated, but I will be smiling.  :P ;D

Offline tednlou2

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,054
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #43 on: February 05, 2011, 11:39:06 PM »
oh god no. i dont mean any disrespect. this shit sucks big time and when i say not as bad as i thought im thinking me mentally able to handle it. not the illness it self.
there is no mistaken this ,this illness sucks shit big time ,

and us newbies should have knowen better ,just like people that smoke, we knew what caused this and should have been more careful.

but no disrespect meant whatsoever.
and like i said too its worse than i ever thought mentally to have this too.

Modified:

I wanted to say that sometimes it is hard to tell the tone of someone's post.  I sometimes think people sound all angry about something.  Just wanted to let you know I was just engaging in the dialogue.

I don't like the idea that we "newbies" should have known better any more than someone in 1987. People in '87 knew very well what catching the virus would do, because they were watching so many of their friends die.  It was on the news more than anytime since.  Since HAART, media attention has disappeared almost.  I worry about the generation coming up now.  They will never have heard of anyone dying of AIDS--and that is great.  But, they also aren't getting any education about HIV--except you can just take meds for it.  And, I've made the same statement before that I should have known better than someone infected a long time ago.  Well, not really.  Okay, didn't mean to get off the main topic here.  
« Last Edit: February 05, 2011, 11:48:27 PM by tednlou2 »

Offline Matty the Damned

  • Member
  • Posts: 12,239
  • Ninja Please
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #44 on: February 05, 2011, 11:50:26 PM »
Modified:

I wanted to say that sometimes it is hard to tell the tone of someone's post.  I sometimes think people sound all angry about something.  Just wanted to let you know I was just engaging in the dialogue.

I don't like the idea that we "newbies" should have known better any more than someone in 1987. People in '87 knew very well what catching the virus would do, because they were watching so many of their friends die.  It was on the news more than anytime since.  Since HAART, media attention has disappeared almost.  I worry about the generation coming up now.  They will never have heard of anyone dying of AIDS--and that is great.  But, they also aren't getting any education about HIV--except you can just take meds for it.  And, I've made the same statement before that I should have known better than someone infected a long time ago.  Well, not really.  Okay, didn't mean to get off the main topic here. 

Still can't take responsibility for yourself Theodora?

MtD

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,852
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #45 on: February 06, 2011, 01:40:34 PM »
I don't like the idea that we "newbies" should have known better any more than someone in 1987. People in '87 knew very well what catching the virus would do, because they were watching so many of their friends die.  It was on the news more than anytime since.  Since HAART, media attention has disappeared almost.  I worry about the generation coming up now.  They will never have heard of anyone dying of AIDS--and that is great.  But, they also aren't getting any education about HIV--except you can just take meds for it.  And, I've made the same statement before that I should have known better than someone infected a long time ago.  Well, not really.  Okay, didn't mean to get off the main topic here.  

I am going to ask you to stop making insulting comments, regarding who knew what and when they knew it.  For you to suggest that everyone in 1987, knew all the facts about HIV is incredibly insensitive.  For you to suggest the new generation will never have heard of anyone dying of AIDS, I refer you to our own memorial forum, as well as the multitudes, worldwide, who die of AIDS every day.  Your comment regarding the lack of present day HIV education, is beyond response. 

What I find the most distasteful however, is your refusal to accept that YOU should have known about the dangers of HIV.  HIV prevention information has been around for decades and if you truly had no knowledge of HIV prevention, then the fault rest squarely on you.  Not on people who you never knew.

Offline Hellraiser

  • Member
  • Posts: 4,140
  • Semi-misanthropic
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #46 on: February 06, 2011, 02:52:26 PM »
I am going to ask you to stop making insulting comments, regarding who knew what and when they knew it.

The same could be said about you attempting to paint all those who were infected recently with the same brush.  How are you to know how much information was available to my generation and my circumstances, or Ted's?  You assume too much.

Offline GSOgymrat

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,047
  • HIV+ since 1993. INTJ
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #47 on: February 06, 2011, 02:55:11 PM »
They will never have heard of anyone dying of AIDS--

That is very optimistic.

Offline Joe K

  • Global Moderator
  • Member
  • Posts: 3,852
  • 31 Years Poz
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #48 on: February 06, 2011, 03:14:59 PM »
The same could be said about you attempting to paint all those who were infected recently with the same brush.  How are you to know how much information was available to my generation and my circumstances, or Ted's?  You assume too much.

I never said any such thing and my comment was directed only to Ted. The idea that HIV prevention information was plentiful in the mid-80s is wrong, as witnessed by an uncaring President Reagan and a disinterested public. There was barely enough HIV service funding to meet even the basic needs of our community and printing prevention information was not always a top priority. Trying to keep people alive was.

I am the first to admit that HIV prevention messages are disjointed, underfunded and that millions of Americans have little access to science based prevention services. I would never be so callous, to suggest that everyone should know the dangers of HIV, but Ted was saying that we had the same amount of prevention services in the 1980's, vs. what we have today and that is simply not true.

And I stand by my statement that any sexually active gay man, should know HIV prevention information.

Online bmancanfly

  • Member
  • Posts: 600
  • Medicare For All !
Re: blessing in disguise?
« Reply #49 on: February 06, 2011, 04:18:19 PM »
The same could be said about you attempting to paint all those who were infected recently with the same brush.  How are you to know how much information was available to my generation and my circumstances, or Ted's?  You assume too much.

I agree.
"The trouble with the world is that the stupid are cocksure and the intelligent are full of doubt."

 Bertrand Russell

 


Terms of Membership for these forums
 

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