United States

I am a 24-year-old free spirited woman. I love solo travels to the beach, I love meeting new people, and I love finding myself each and every day.

In June of 2023, I was cheated on by my partner of three years. In that same month, I was diagnosed with HIV, despite being tested every year prior. Only a three-letter word, a four-letter sentence that is so soul crushing. "You are HIV-positive." My mind went blank, my heart was broken. My womanhood felt like it had been completely destroyed. My sense of beauty, my life as I knew it, felt as if it was stolen from me in the blink of an eye. Of course, that was all based on internalized stereotypes about HIV.

Despite all of the stigma and misinformation surrounding HIV, I managed to find myself again. I managed to talk about my experience. I managed to create a safe space within myself, for not only myself but for everyone else around me, no matter what life throws at them. Talk about the hard things. Talk about the embarrassing things. Release yourself from all of the built-up emotions.

I am still me. You are still you. We are all humans, shifting with life each day. Nothing makes anyone less of a human than anyone else. Remember, whatever emotions you feel about an HIV diagnosis… it's something that simply can happen to humans from normal human activities- the H in HIV stands for HUMAN.

The divine within me bows to the divine within you.

Why Avery wants to be part of A Girl Like Me: I am living with HIV and I want to make sure that nobody else, man or woman, ever feels the things I felt at the time of my diagnosis. It's an emotional roller coaster for sure, but I don't want anyone to ever feel alone.



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