This post originally appeared October 28, 2012 on the blog of HIV Poz Guy here.
Nothing in this world will ever prepare you for that dreaded moment a stranger you hardly know says the words ‘you are HIV positive’. At that one moment, time slows down, your head implodes, suddenly you think death is all you have to look forward to.
The last place you want to be is sat in a tiny hospital room, on your own in that moment, with a man who is probably the same age as you, well educated, good looking and a nurse looking at you with such pity, telling you to ‘breathe’. The most basic function we take for granted, the first thing we do when we enter into this world, and all you can think about in that moment is death.
Well…I am HIV Positive….there….I said it…it’s out there.
I decided to write this blog because I think a lot needs to be said about HIV, all the negative and positive aspects that go with it (believe me, there are positives!). I want other people to be able to read this and have the assurance I so desperately searched for when I needed it the most, I almost craved good news to keep me going some days and I want to be able to share all of this with you. I want to keep this going for as long as I can, to track my life anonymously in the hopes that this one day becomes my legacy which is passed between all who read and need this.
Where to start though I guess. Well judging by the above you can imagine I was pretty gutted but let’s take you on my trip on how I ended up in that ill-fated hospital room sobbing my heart out thinking my world was ending.
As the title may suggest, I look back on this day and see it as the start of something new, a milestone if you will, of when my life began (don’t worry, I’m not gonna get all philosophical on you and spout on about how I found god or anything!). So… A week before I found out, I was in hospital having had a bad allergic reaction to something, whilst there. A routine blood test was carried out and my platelet count was half that of a normal person. I had platelet problems as a child so thought nothing too much of it. Well thankfully the hospital decided to run other tests on my blood as a result of this.. ‘Routine stuff’… they told me. So my liver, kidneys got tested, I was tested for hep b and c, as well as HIV. I was told the results would be with my doctor within a day or two.
Having called my doc up, he had no results and so I rang the hospital up, was told everything came back fine but the HIV test was being sent elsewhere for testing.
This was the initial warning bell in my head, I’m not thick and not a lot gets past me, once I have a bad feeling about something, I don’t let go of that instinct to find out what the hell is going on. I became a man possessed that week from what I can recall, searching the Internet like a detective, trying to find clues and reasons why it was all taking too long to get these bloody results back.
I found out that HIV testing involves the initial test followed by a further one to double check it using what’s called a ‘western blot’, which is basically never wrong. Having spent the rest of my week ringing my docs and hospitals up for the results, I ended up being quite pushy and demanded to speak to a doctor at the hospital. He called me to say I should go in and see him for a chat….well straight away in that moment I knew why.
I threw care to wind on what clothes I was wearing, opting for comfort over style, I mean what clothes do you wear to something that could potentially change your life forever?! My hair was short and scruffy; bed head comes to mind. I parked up outside the hospital and ran in, this was in the morning by the way. By this point I had messaged by boyfriend to come as well. I walked and met the doctor, with the nurse that showed pity and kindness to me, as well as a plastic cup of stone cold water.
When the news was given to me, as mentioned above to you, it was horrid. One of the worst experiences of my life that I would never want to relive.
I’m a tall guy, but sitting in that room, I felt like I was sat in a stadium, I felt so small and insignificant, like a bug waiting… no not waiting… wanting… wanting to be squashed, anything to get away or out of this vacuous hell hole of a room. I’m trying to describe this in as much detail as I can so others can relate to this feeling, it’s certainly like no other.
To be continued . .
About the writer
This is the story of me, I’m an engaged gay guy, in my 20′s, and living with HIV – diagnosed in Oct 2012. I'm from Bournemouth, England.
I wanted to tell my story to help and inspire others… to provide hope to those that need it, just like I did and still do. A little about me, I’m at college at the moment and preparing to go to Uni. I have a loving boyfriend who i love with and who turned into my fiance at the end of 2011, but I’ll just refer to him as my partner or boyfriend, fiancé to me sounds too.. Um… uppity or supercilious to me.
I’m also on twitter, bizarrely no one else has a twitter name of @hivpozguy, so that’s where you can tweet me or follow me at to get tidbits, thoughts and news I feel is relevant