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Author Topic: Four Years Later  (Read 7730 times)

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Online Diagnosedat50

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Four Years Later
« on: November 29, 2023, 10:17:07 am »
Four years ago today, I got the call from my doctor telling me that I tested positive for HIV. At least I finally had an idea why I suddenly fell ill a week earlier with chills, fever, muscle pain, and night sweats. I had avoided testing for years because I didn't want to know the truth (stupid, I know), and my body had done all it could to fight the virus on its own.

Like so many others, I wondered, "what now?" I was a 50 year-old returning student working on prerequisite coursework before applying to graduate school and wasn't sure if I'd be able to finish up my term, let alone continue with my studies.

I'm grateful that my life has continued relatively smoothly since that day, even as we found ourselves dealing with a pandemic just as I was beginning to come to terms emotionally with my diagnosis. I was fortunate to recover quickly once I started taking the meds (Biktarvy and an antibiotic since my CD was just under 200), reached undetectable in about eight weeks, and got off the antibiotic in three months. And I'm thankful I've remained healthy, with good results on bloodwork, especially when I remain physically active and watch my nutrition. Somehow I have managed to escape the weight gain many have reported while on Biktarvy.

I've had my ups and downs emotionally, especially after I started working towards my Masters in Science and struggled with balancing work, studies, and physical activity. But learning to take time for counseling to work on my mental health, reconnecting with friends and loved ones, and carving out time exercise regularly has been an huge help.

The past few months have been a whirlwind of "good." I graduated in May with my Masters in Science in Applied Exercise Science and Sports Nutrition, started a new job in a related field, trained for and ran my first marathon since before my diagnosis while raising funds for a local AIDS/HIV charity group, and started a PhD program in Kinesiology and Sports Nutrition. Life has been really, really good, and I'm excitedly looking forward to whatever comes next.  :)

To those recently diagnosed and wondering "what now," hang in there. Things can and will improve. To those who have been around for a long time and serve as reminders that life no longer has to end prematurely because of HIV, thank you for instilling hope!

Offline Tonny2

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Re: Four Years Later
« Reply #1 on: November 29, 2023, 11:04:23 am »

        ojo.           Congratulations in achieving your goals. There is life after an HIV diagnosis. Keep up the good work!…hugs

Offline leatherman

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Re: Four Years Later
« Reply #2 on: November 29, 2023, 03:44:58 pm »
Congratulations on all your hard work paying off!
leatherman (aka Michael)

We were standing all alone
You were leaning in to speak to me
Acting like a mover shaker
Dancing to Madonna then you kissed me
And I think about it all the time
- Darren Hayes, "Chained to You"

Offline numbersguy82

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Re: Four Years Later
« Reply #3 on: November 29, 2023, 05:31:52 pm »
Wow it sounds like you are doing amazingly, and that your physical health will have a great outlook with all of your education. Kudos, and if you’re ever interested, we have peer support bi-weekly. It has become something of a social hour while within the parameters of that week’s hiv related topic.

JOIN US FOR PEER-ish SUPPORT Every other Friday @ 7pm EST, PM me your email address for meeting link/information

Strive for “One Day When” by collecting “One Day Wins”

Offline harleymc

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Re: Four Years Later
« Reply #4 on: November 29, 2023, 10:48:08 pm »
Well done. Do allow some time for yourself


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