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Author Topic: Who am I and how did I get here  (Read 3512 times)

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Offline woodshere

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,477
  • ain't no shame in my game
Who am I and how did I get here
« on: November 06, 2006, 05:40:16 PM »
Let's start with the second part.  How I got here, well I think it is pretty obvious.  Somewhere along the way I made some poor decisions, which at the time provided great fun, led to some serious consequences.  I was sitting at my desk this past March when the phone rang and it was my Dr.  He said, "Can you talk?"  Please as soon as he said that I knew. He said he had some good news and bad news.  The bad news was I was HIV+, but the good was everything else was fine. Makes those low cholesterol numbers seem trivial.  I hadn't been tested in years and with my adventuresome sex life (sounds so much better than calling myself a promiscuous whore) it really wasn't a surprise.  I just kind of went numb.  Fortunately I had done some advance planning in case this happened and had some resource people to call.  Within 2 hours I had spoken to a guy at the Aids Resource Center, someone from the AIDS Interfaith Ministry and 2 guys who had been positive for 15 and 21 years. All gave reassuring advice and support to a complete stranger. I didn't cry, I didn't get angry, I didn't feel guilty.  I quickly accepted this was where my life's journey was headed so I had to learn to deal with it. 

And what a remarkable 8 months I have had in learning to deal with being HIV+.  I am learning the HIV+ language, you know PI's; HAART;VL;meds.  I thought I was pretty smart about this HIV thing but boy was I wrong. I have joined a HIV+ social group that gather on a routine basis for potlucks, parties, happy hours.  I volunteered with the AIDS Walk in Sept and was team captain for my churches team.  And now I am getting ready to be trained to serve as a volunteer pre&post HIV test counselor with the county HIV prevention services.  In this short time I believe I am being pulled to become an advocate for early testing.  I am a perfect example of what happens when you never get tested and participate in risky behavior.  I started with poor numbers and had to immediately start Reyataz, Truvada, Norvir and Bactrim.  Plus no telling how many others I have put at risk. 

And now just a little about me (this is much longer than I want but there is so much to say or at least I think there is).  I am very active in my Baptist church.  I know what you are thinking Baptist, but as we like to say we aren't your typical Baptists.  Our church has a gay & lesbian study group with about 40 members.  I am a deacon, chair of fellowship committee and children's Sunday School teacher and everyone knows I am gay.  My faith is very important!  Fortunately I have never struggled with being gay and a Christian.  It is my firm belief that I was created as the person I am who is a child of God.  Those who differ and talk of a God of hate and damnation, I say screw 'em.  Now some are probably thinking a Gay Baptist Deacon Whore, how does that work.  Folks we are all human, sometimes we struggle and because of that we make mistakes.  But the mistakes I have made in life can't be changed nor would I want to because they have led me to this place in life which is pretty damn good.

Quickly now things I like and words to describe me: beer, blackjack, country cookin, floral designer/ event planner, spendthrift, liberal, uncle, funny, witty, average looking, drag, jazz, opera, leather, reading, Amazing Race, college football & basketball, single :(, HILLARY OR OBAMA IN '08!!!

I am so pleased to have found this site. Thanks for reading and getting to know me a little better.  I look forward to getting to know many of you on this journey.

"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 Blixer

  • Member
  • Posts: 712
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #1 on: November 06, 2006, 07:16:42 PM »
Welcome to the boards Woods!  Sorry about how you got here, but you seem to have plenty to share and I'm looking forward to hearing much more from you!  It sounds like you are taking things in stride and that is great!  I know your post is a very serious one, but I had to snicker with your comment about the "good news, bad news" and yes it does make the low cholesterol numbers and many other things seem quite trivial.  Hopefully you will find the support you need here as I'm sure you are going to be great support for those who pass this way.
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 RapidRod

  • Member
  • Posts: 15,288
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #2 on: November 06, 2006, 07:34:03 PM »
Welcome sir.

Offline poet

  • Member
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  • Poet living and working in Central Maine
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #3 on: November 06, 2006, 07:50:55 PM »
Hey Woods: welcome!  It seems to be that sort of night.  Someone pointed out a thread from June in which everyone was introducing themselves so now I have a much better idea of the persons behind the screennames.  Win
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 Life

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  • Member 2005
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #4 on: November 06, 2006, 07:56:12 PM »
Hi Woods... Glad you found us...  I think you will find it pretty sweet hangin with us... We got em all here....

Offline AlanBama

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  • Alabama: the 'other' 3rd World Country!
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #5 on: November 06, 2006, 08:18:18 PM »
Hi Woods and welcome!

Glad to have you join us.

"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 Eldon

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  • Posts: 2,664
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #6 on: November 07, 2006, 12:14:01 AM »
Hey Woods...

It is a pleasure to have read your introduction to get to meet you! You may have knowledge of this, however:

I wish to extend to you a warm WELCOME here at the forums. Here you will find the encouragement, communication, understanding, support, some cries, some laughter, and many of your questions relating to HIV/AIDS answered.

We have a great group of Real people who will listen as well as answer you. We are here to encourage one another and to learn from each other.

Talking to other people helps us see that we are not the only ones with problems. Feel free to come and vent with whatever is on your mind from time-to-time as it is highly therapeutic.

In the interim, you may want to start taking a multi-vitamin, Omega 3 and eat a diet high in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and low-fat dairy and avoid processed foods, saturated and trans fats. This will also help you maintain a healthy weight.

Exercise at least three times per week for a minimum of 30 minutes.

Make the BEST of each and every Day!

Offline Queen Tokelove

  • Member
  • Posts: 6,033
  • Smokey the Smurf
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #7 on: November 07, 2006, 12:20:32 AM »

Welcome to the Forums! I say ditto to everything everyone else has said. I would say more but am feeling a bit under the weather due to getting my flu shot today. Take this short post as a blessing because at times i don't know when to shut up.... ;D....I look forward to hearing more from you in the future.
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 david25luvit

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,409
  • Member since March 2005
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #8 on: November 07, 2006, 04:10:30 AM »
Welcome Mr. Woods..........

               You're among friends..... :-*
In Memory of
Raymond David McRae III
Nov. 25, 1972- Oct. 15, 2004
I miss him terribly..........

Offline Nadine

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  • Posts: 1,253
  • Member since: August 2005
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #9 on: November 07, 2006, 05:44:49 AM »
Welcome Woods...Thanks for the introduction

Offline aztecan

  • Member
  • Posts: 5,517
  • 32 years positive, 60 years a pain in the butt
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #10 on: November 07, 2006, 09:15:00 AM »
Well Howdy Woods!

I'm glad you found us and even more so you have chimed in and introduced yourself.

Wow! A gay Baptist?!? I didn't know such a person existed!  ;D

Seriously, I'm looking forward to getting to know you better. Oh, by the way. You are mistaken. Unless you were charging for it, you aren't a whore. You're a slut, just like moi!  8)

I just wanted to say welcome from the Land of Enchantment.


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

Offline woodshere

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,477
  • ain't no shame in my game
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #11 on: November 07, 2006, 10:06:59 AM »

Who says I was not charging on occassion? ;)

"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 Christine

  • Member
  • Posts: 1,069
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #12 on: November 07, 2006, 12:54:46 PM »
Hi Woods,
Your post was great! Welcome to the forums!
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

Offline o

  • Member
  • Posts: 52
Re: Who am I and how did I get here
« Reply #13 on: November 07, 2006, 01:42:22 PM »
Hallo Woods

so u became a saint? :-)




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