May 2, 2011
Mother and grandmother, churchgoer, cancer survivor, positive for 24 years.
June 5, 2011, marks 30 years since the first published accounts of what
became known as AIDS. For this anniversary, we asked 31 long-term
survivors who’ve appeared in POZ what
moves and sustains them and whether they think they’ll live to see a
cure. Why 31? One for each year, and one more for good luck.
What’s the most helpful thing anyone has said to you over your years living with HIV?
“Take your medicine and stay positive.”
What change or development in your treatment for HIV has most affected your life—for better or worse?
For the better—having a great and consistent doctor for the journey along the way.
What is your refuge from thinking about and dealing with your health?
It’s a constant reminder. Taking medications twice daily, getting back to work part time.
What has been your major economic challenge since testing positive?
Having cancer, access to medications, financial assistance.
Do you think there will be a cure in your lifetime—and if so, will you benefit from it?
I don’t think there will be a cure in my lifetime, and I have had the virus for 24 years and won’t benefit from it.
What advice would you give to someone newly diagnosed?
Get all the information, see a good doctor, change your lifestyle, eat right, exercise and be consistent with taking medications if you choose to go on them.
to read this article as it
appeared in the June 2011 issue.
read more of our "30 Years of AIDS" coverage.
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