This blog was not easy to write… Yes, HIV took my motherhood… Back in those times when I was diagnosed, we had no medicine. At least, I didn't have any access to treatment in Colombia, my country where I left from the United States to die as it was a death sentence. I remember having that conversation with my mother and both of us being in agreement that I should never get pregnant, because unfortunately there were not a lot of people living with HIV in my country back then and those children that were being born were dying of complications of AIDS, and I never wanted any child to die because of the human condition that I had or have. That's one of the reasons, as many know, that I became the caregiver of my grandparents in Colombia… until they transitioned. These were the happiest years of my life! Finally being in a home of love, respect, spirituality, but most importantly, no violence!! Although I was dealing at such a young age with the death sentence that we had. 😞 We had no viral load test! No social media! No information. I didn’t know anyone that had HIV and this was very traumatic.
After 10 years with no access to treatment, I was dying, so I returned back to the United States and got on treatment immediately. I became undetectable in four weeks and, as we all know now, undetectable equals untrabnsmittable, which means that if you find out your status and get on treatment.. become undetectable, you cannot pass HIV to anyone sexually - zero risk!! All the global medical institutions and scientific studies back this up, 🙏 just Google it.
I know in my 30s I could've had children - even in my 40s. I am 49 currently, but it was programmed in my brain that I shouldn't have children. My children were my grandparents, my niece Angelina that I love and is studying to be an anesthesiologist in UCF, and I am extremely proud of her… Also those hundreds and hundreds of young women and men that I have mentored throughout the years in my advocacy and just in every day life… Seeing them succeed and accomplish their goals, especially when they were going through rough times and were about to take the wrong turn, something I try to prevent daily with all of those young women and men or boys and girls that follow me on social media platforms and in person.
I am extremely proud of The Well Project and the initiative they are taking or have taken as far as to show the world how now mothers are breast-feeding their babies, which I assume is better, yet I know there is a beautiful connection you have with your child. I wish I would've seen and lived those things in my time back in the days, but I'm extremely happy to see it happening right now!! God, we have come a long way! Never forget that there is hope that an HIV diagnosis is not the end anymore. You can not only survive but thrive! Get married, have children, go to school, and live almost a normal life.
With all of this being said, I will continue to advocate for those that don't have a voice yet and pass along this crucial information that we have. And all the advancements that we have. I will continue to show my face with much dignity, respect, and honesty, which are codes that I live by!! Please, if you are living with HIV, consider coming out of the HIV closet.🙏🏻 This way, we can continue to humanize this human condition, as I call it.
Much love and light,
Maria HIV Mejia