I recently had the privilege of speaking for the Ohio State University AIDS Clinical Trials Unit. This was my first time speaking before a group of people (let alone, people who knew my HIV status)! I was terrified to say the least. I volunteer for this organization, so it helped that I knew most of the people. On a typical meeting, we may have 8-10 people in attendance. Of course the day I'm speaking we had closer to 15 attendees. While still not many people, it seemed intimidating.
I created a slide show (the last time I did that was 10 years ago in college)! My presentation discussed the conferences I attended over the course of 2014, including the Speak Up! National Summit for Women Living with HIV, Positive Living Conference and the United States Conference on AIDS (USCA).
Despite being terrified, I think it went well. I spoke a little too fast, which was simply my nerves. But it was empowering to share some of the information I've learned. As a person living with HIV, it's nice to share my viewpoint with others who are HIV positive, as well as people working within the HIV community.