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It does get better

Hi my name is Sarah and I'm HIV positive. Not only do I have HIV, but i also have other health complications. When I was 14 I was diagnosed with having Lupus and when I was 16 I had to get a valve replaced in my heart. In March of 2001, I suffered a heart attack and I went through 2 abortions (health reasons).

When I found out I was HIV was positive in Nov. 2001. I went to the doctors for a routine physical. I asked my doctor to test me for all the STDs out there. Two weeks after the appointment, the doctor called me into her office to tell me the devistating news. I didn't beleive her at first thinking that it was the Lupus that was causing a false positive. I came home and told my boyfriend that I was positive and right away he went and got tested. He came back negative. After his results I was convinced that it was the Lupus that was causing a false positive. I couldn't understand how i did not infect him. I asked other men that I have been with to get tested and they all came back negative. Then I was convinced that it was a false positive. When the doctors told me that it was rare for one to have a false positive I was certain that I got it from a blood transfusion back in 1995. My doctors where able to find out approx. how long i had it for and they told me that i ha!
d it for 2 - 3 years. I was amazed. Till this day I don't know who infected me. I am not going to let that bother me. The issue is that I have it, so now I must deal with it.

I'm fortunate enough not to need any meds. More good news is that the HIV will put my Lupus in remission. For me nothing has really changed. I take mediacation for the Lupus and my heart, so I'm used to taking medication. If there ever is a time that I will need to take meds. for the HIV I think I'll be a pro at it!

Now that I am able to cope with having HIV, life is great!! I have a good career. All I need now is a Husband and kids.
All I have to say to someone who was recently diagnosed with having HIV is that IT DOES GET BETTER!!!
Thanks for reading my story

~ sent via email Mar 5 2002, Canada

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