February 1, 2017
I don't want to get crazy and emotional if it's all speculation; it might not be as bad as it sounds. Trump might not get rid of the part of Obamacare that guarantees medical insurance to people with pre-existing conditions. You never know, Trumpland might not be as bad as I think it will become.
However, after his first week in office, I'm now more afraid than I was before he moved into the White House. I had a dream last night that I was moved into an HIV camp; it was full of HIV-positive people, so we could not spread our disease. Trump decided to contain us to reduce the cost of HIV care in the future. If you capture us all, the disease dies inside the camp, and he will be a hero. After watching the travel-ban chaos, and watching the lack of input or assistance it looks like he's getting from his administration, I wouldn't put it past him to come up with some wacko plan like this.
If funds and programs are cut that actually assist us Americans with pre-existing conditions, he is basically sentencing them/us all to death.
HIV meds are far from affordable without medical insurance. They help make us functioning parts of society economically and emotionally. We are mothers, fathers, sisters, husbands, brothers, grandmas and friends. If you take away our medication and our ability to go to the doctor, where does that leave us?
How can you say our lives matter less than "healthy" people? What a crock of shit! We have enough emotional stress that comes with our diagnoses; this additional load sucks and is unneeded.
I work part time and have no medical insurance from my employer: That is not my fault. I am a functioning member of society; if you take away my medication, it's only a short matter of time until I am not one.
Does my six-year-old son deserve to have a sick, dying mother rather than the functioning one my medication helps me to be? Keeping programs like the Affordable Care Act and Medicaid expansion active and funded keeps his mommy alive and working, not dying in some hospital bed.
I feel like I'm being treated like an addict, and the government is telling me I don't NEED my pills. It's not important; we are not important, but we ARE. I AM. We have a voice and we need to be heard, now maybe more than ever.
When I was diagnosed, I thought it was a death sentence; I assumed my son would grow up without me. After months of research and support from BABES and Lifelong AIDS Alliance in Seattle, Washington, I found a sense of normalcy since learning I had an incurable, fatal disease. I choose to overcome my fear with the power of words. I have been writing since 1992 trying to save the world one page, one poem, one play or column at a time.
I've written about the epidemic of school violence in America and the handful of little girls who were abducted and murdered about 12 years back. My voice has always been for others until my HIV doctor sent me to TheBody.com's website, then my voice began to include myself.
I am not going away quietly. I'm a child of Woodstock parents, and I will stand up to injustice in our country whether it directly affects me or not.
|What Could Happen to Your HIV Health Care Under Trump -- and What You Can Do About It|
|Trump's Block Grants Would Destroy Medicaid, Bedrock of HIV Care|
|New Administration, Old Approach: Trump Advocates Medicaid Block Grants and ACA Repeal|
|More Personal Accounts of HIV and U.S. Health Insurance|
Brooke was diagnosed HIV positive in January 2010 -- two months married and 11 weeks pregnant with her first baby -- and has already begun to educate others about HIV. She now lives in Texas, and her poetry has been featured on TheBody.com. Her son was born on July 15, 2010.
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