You came into this world with your eyes wide open, I watched you grow, from your first smile, giggle, words, tooth, steps and school days. I watched in awe and pride of your triumphs, until one day I noticed you were sick, glued to your chair, burning up and no amount of comfort could shake off what I saw. Continue reading
A labyrinth is not like a maze – but both can drive anyone to the depths of despair, exhaustion and even destruction. A labyrinth’s end is its centre and even on finding that point, you still need to find your way back out. A maze requires you to find your way out at a different place from where you began.
I’m not a religious man. I don’t go to church and I haven’t said my prayers at night since I was a child. Some folk get comfort from their faith, their beliefs and that’s kind of cool. I wouldn’t know how to pray. There are lots who do though and I bet they wish they were as out of touch with praying as me and didn’t feel the need. People pray for all kinds of things, a better job, a happier marriage, world peace, oh, and I almost forgot, the catch-all prayer for “those who are sick and less fortunate than ourselves”. There was a lot of praying going on in 1984. There were a lot of sick and less fortunate people. God had his work cut out. We were in the midst of a so called “plague”, although God must have been a bit confused because this was one plague he never sent. Bring back flies and locusts that’s what I say! Continue reading
When HIV and AIDS first became apparent, it seemed like a Pandora’s box had been opened and all these evil things escaped to do terrible things to people in the world. But if you know your Greek mythology you’ll know that, despite all the terrible things that were unleashed into the world from Pandora’s box, there was one thing left in there after everything else had escaped. That one thing left was hope. Continue reading
Nothing and no one could ever have prepared me for the way HIV came into my world, like a tidal wave crashing down on the shores of my life and laying waste to all that lay before it. I was diagnosed after being rushed into hospital with PCP pneumonia and a blood CD4 count of 21. I’d been ill for some time. A cough that just refused to go away, and a breathlessness which, at times, felt like I was drowning. I don’t know whether it was because I was too ill to care, or that I finally knew what was wrong with me, but being told I had HIV came as a relief. Continue reading
Sometime ago I was informed by the doctor that the dreaded and mysterious virus had invaded my blood, changing my life forever. The invader was so powerful, (insert comma) such that it rendered my immunity system helpless, leaving me exposed to all sorts of diseases and the possibility of an early death. Since that time, it has demanded my full attention so I am hosting it reluctantly, because I have no choice. When I was told about this invasion I was angry, how could it happen? I thought my defences were secure but the enemy had broken them. Continue reading
When I found out that I was HIV positive ten years ago, I thought at first I was going to die. I felt I was on Death Row. It just felt like I had been exiled from my home world. Continue reading
I sat across the table from you in the Nottingham Gay Social Group and remember you all chatting away. We all had a laugh and a cuppa and decided on our future events. I was unaware of the pain some of you were going through, as you never showed your despair, you still hugged and kissed me and held my hand in times of trouble. Continue reading