Miami, Florida

Positive since 1989

I am 47 years old. I knew I was HIV positive in 1989, but I did not want to believe it. I was ashamed. I went for two years living a normal life. I started losing a lot of weight, so I began getting help. I was taking a lot of medicine: 12 pills twice a day. I wanted to believe I didn’t need help, so I stopped taking my medicine. Again, I lost so much weight. I put myself in the hospital. I needed a blood transfusion, but I got better. In 1991, I had a little baby girl. She lost her life in 1993. I started doing the right thing. Now, I am on the perfect trail of life.

What is your greatest achievement?

Bringing my viral load to undetectable.

What is your greatest regret?

Losing my daughter.

What keeps you up at night?

Taking a nap during the day.

If you could change one thing about living with HIV, what would it be?

Being the way I was in 1990.

What is the best advice you ever received?

Take your medicine every day.

What person in the HIV/AIDS community do you most admire?


What drives you to do what you do?

My mother.

What is your motto?

Living many more years.

If you had to evacuate your house immediately, what is the one thing you would grab on the way out?

My medicine.

If you could be any animal, what would you be? And why?

I would be a dog, because they’re a person’s best friend.