Dear Advocate

Dear Advocate,

2021, so far, has been a year of focusing on me and choosing me above all else. Too often I have dimmed my light and emptied my cup for the needs of others. I'm an empath and a nurturer, so it comes with the territory, or so they say. But I strongly feel there needs to be more conversation about the impacts of not choosing yourself. About giving so much of yourself there's nothing left.

When you're living with a condition like HIV, a condition that's manageable, it's society's perception of us or blatant disregard for knowing the basic facts of HIV that makes things exhausting. Where do we draw the line between advocating for a cause and placing responsibility on those individuals to learn on their own about something that can happen to anyone?

While I love advocating and educating others, I have decided to be more intentional with how I do it. I pride myself on saying I'm more than my diagnosis, therefore every second of breath shouldn't be spent discussing my status or the condition. When you hear the letters HIV, I want it to be a thought, but I want to be more than just "the girl with HIV".

I want to be remembered as a fearless community leader who spoke up for change, BUT, at the end of the day, I've realized my own interpretation of myself is all that truly matters. I love myself beyond the fear of your thoughts or perception of me. I love myself beyond societal expectations of me because I'm living and thriving with HIV.

So for 2021, I'll keep focusing on me. Pushing fear aside and making some monumental moves for myself and anyone who comes along for the ride. Your company is not needed but welcomed!

Never forget you, we, are more than this diagnosis!

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True talk

boseolotu's picture

Thank you so much sister. True talk we are not defined by the AIDS virus and any circumstances.

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Hello boseolotu,

Marig2016's picture

Hello boseolotu,

thank you so much for your comment and reading my entry! For clarification AIDS is not the virus HIV is . AIDS is simply the medical classification given to someone living with HIV to reflect that they have or previously had a very weakened immune system. Language is super important when trying to break stigma so I just wanted to provide clarification. 
 

hope you're having a great day! 
 

 

 

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Whew!

ci.ciiiiii's picture

You said a mouthful! There is so much more to us than this diagnosis. And we deserve to take care of ourselves. Our lives literally depend on it. 

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Literally!

Marig2016's picture

Our lives literally depend on it and I think we so often forget that. Diagnosis or not we have to do better at making the best decisions for us!!! 2021 is the year for growth to be our best selves ❤️❤️

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You said a mouthful

Dream90's picture

We definitely have similar characteristics. I've learned over the years that self-care is important and it's ok to say no. I'm recently diagnosed and still trying to adjust. Thanks for this post. 

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You are so welcome!

Marig2016's picture

That's what AGLM is about connecting us and realizing we aren't alone! May will be 5 years into my diagnosis. Some days are still a struggle! How are you doing? Are you managing things well? If you need anything don't hesitate to let us know! As a CAB member myself and many other ladies in addition to our fierce leaders are here for you!! ❤️❤️

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Red40something's picture

Red40something commented on 9 By 49

Wed, 9/15/2021 - 1:51am

Red40something's picture

Red40something commented on 9 By 49

Wed, 9/15/2021 - 1:50am

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