I have not disclosed to many people. I've told my parents, sister, grandparents, my best friend and of course my co-workers who were around my desk when I received my diagnosis. Writing this blog has allowed me to work through some of my issues and become more accepting and understanding of my status. As a result of this, I believe I am to the point of wanting to share my story.
An opportunity presented itself at Bible study not long ago. However, I couldn't bring myself to share. But I recently had another opportunity. My office hired a new employee. I've gotten along with her very well and have had some great conversations, getting to know her more and more. Then one afternoon when we were by ourselves in the office, an opportunity came up in our conversation for me to disclose my status as HIV+.
As I was telling her, I could feel the blood rushing through me...I felt hot. I knew I must have been blushing. I was embarrassed...I felt so vulnerable. She looked at me and said her Uncle had died of AIDS. She went on to tell me that she was the primary caregiver to him toward the end of his life and one of the only people who would hug him. She then came around my desk and HUGGED me. I felt accepted and calm. And to be perfectly honest, relieved that she had not ran out of the room!
What great relief it was to disclose to someone so caring and understanding! I know all of my disclosures will not go this well, but it was simply heartwarming to know that people do understand and not everyone is afraid of you.