I Am HIV Positive

‘When the doctor gave me my test result…’

Hey guys, it’s another Wednesday and Wednesdays are for our HIV, Human Trafficking and Staying Alive segment. I won’t proceed if I do not thank you guys for visiting this blog.

Every day when I come back here to write and publish another post, I really do not think twice before I do that because the comments, views and support give me a reason to stroll back in here.

I was in Benin Republic two weeks ago; you guys have read Bella’s story obviously. I don’t think I mentioned Princess (not her real name). I met her in Benin Republic, she has this zest for life and she is HIV positive. Today, you are going to be reading about her life story. She opened up to me. She is not a Beninese; I am definitely going to skip where she is from so she is not decoded. You know the blog is read not just by Nigerians, there are a lot of people who live in other countries that read this blog.

I was born to African parents from different countries, but I grew up in Cameroun. As a kid, I was constantly falling sick. If you call me a Sickler, you are not wrong. I was literally one. At age 12, I was separated from my parents. My mum left us in Cameroun to meet my dad in the other African country I am from.

At the age of 14, armed robbers paid us a visit. We were just females in the house including my grandmother. I was the eldest of the kids at home as my parents were away. I was able to hide the little ones. The house was empty, there was no money in the house. The armed robbers turned the house upside down and they couldn’t find the money.

I had to pay for the lack of money and valuables in the house. They took turns to rape me, 3 of them. When they were done, I almost passed out. When they left, I was rushed to the hospital. Series of tests were carried out and I was given drugs. I was also asked to come back in 3 months’ time.

After 3 months, I got to the hospital ready for whatever life to offer. After the test, I was positive. Funny enough, when the doctor was saying ‘HIV is not the end of the world’ and all that’s not, I just wanted to go home. I was raped again when I was 16 and when I was 18. Please, don’t blame me. Am I expected to tell the therapist that I am HIV positive? They wouldn’t have believed me, if I don’t tell you, you don't know.

I got used to living with the virus, but one time when I went back to my other African country, I stopped taking my meds. It was not really intentional. You know it is not easy going to a new place and trying to find a hospital for your ARV. It’s not really something you get to announce to the world. Well, I got very sick, it was really terrible. When I came to the Benin Republic newly from the other African country which is not Cameroun, I knew I needed help. I told an Aunt of mine the situation of things and she took me to a hospital in Nigeria. I had to start taking my meds again as I was diagnosed with tuberculosis. That was the last time I skipped my meds for a whole 2 years.

As regards living with the virus, I forget the fact that there is something negative living in me. I take the drug as a supplement for myself. There are other things that can kill you faster than HIV. You can have the virus and live a healthy life. I have been living with the virus for over 11 years and I am still here and I am very healthy.

I don’t think I have seen anyone as positive as Princess, she has a kind of positive energy that is really contagious. Personally, I struggle with bad days, things not going as planned and I take it out on myself, but Princess is different. She takes life one step at a time, she doesn’t look or behave like someone who is HIV positive. She also is very healthy, she looks extremely healthy and she is healthy.

HIV is not the end of the world. People get it in different ways. Don’t see an HIV positive person and go and start judging. I remember an interview I conducted with a reality TV star who is on one of these series that talks about HIV. When I asked him if he could get married to someone living with the virus, he said he couldn’t. I had to remind him of the show he is on when he finally understood my line of questioning, we had to cut and record that part again.

If you are not living with the virus, try to stay healthy and clean. Take care of your body, take care of your clothes and your mental health. Watch the food you eat, be around positive and inspiring people, breathe fresh air, take a walk and be happy. Whatever is troubling you today will not last forever. Appreciate each day because you do not leave this life alive.


Comments

  1. That's good. Especially the part that said having a "good mental health". Because I've come to believe that good mental health defines ones personality.

    ReplyDelete
    Replies
    1. Yeah. It's good to be very healthy mentally. Surround yourself with positive people.

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  2. This is really inspiring and really contagious. And mental health is really of Paramount importance. Once you have a positive mind its changes other things, it might solve all the problems but it will go along way...
    Thanks Gifty for this inspiring story. May God help princess to be stronger and healthier.💞😘

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