Discovery and Team Work
September 1998 marks the first anniversary of a discovery that changed my life forever. I am referring to the visit with my doctor and my AIDS diagnosis. As I have said before, I was the first person I knew of who had AIDS. This left me feeling quite alone and unprepared for my uncertain future.
I wish to express my deepest feelings of thanks and love to the members of the Women Alive Coalition.
Love and Support
Their love and support has guided me through a year filled with fear and anxiety. The wonderful little converted house on S. Burnside has felt like a home away from home. I feel as if I am among friends who have somehow become family. We all care so much for each other. I can nourish my spirit here and replenish my willpower just by dropping by.
I awoke in the recovery room after major surgery, my eyes focusing on a large bouquet of exotic flowers at the nurse's desk. The card said they were from all the ladies at Women Alive. I felt like Hot-S**t as everyone bustled about the room commenting on my beautiful flowers! "Ooh! Somebody must sure care about you!" I heard as I fell back asleep. I received a card on my birthday signed by everyone. Again, I was wrapped in the warmth of love.
I like to think of everyone helping me as being members of my team, Team Shelley. You all play an active part in my growth and healing. You have given of yourselves in an effort to guide me just as a team rallies behind its quarterback, watching out that I don't get blind sided or sacked.
I Never Feel Alone
Though I can't list all your names and what you do for me I would like to mention a few who stand out for going that extra mile. Aleece calls and sends those great pick-me-ups when I need them most. I just met Mary Lucey, the co-founder of Women Alive. There are volunteers who hold yoga classes, give us a massage once a week, and help run the office. Then there are those I join for Heterosexuals Too (or H2, as I call it). Everyone there is a Godsend for me.
While I'm thanking my "teammates;" I'd like to include others not necessarily connected to Women Alive whom I consider vital to my on-going fight for a good life: My husband, Dan, my entire family, Dr. Galpin, Marcy Fenton RD, and everyone in my Monday support group -- well, you know who you are.
It has been quite a year. I'm better now and I never feel alone. Thank you.
This article was provided by Women Alive. It is a part of the publication Women Alive Newsletter.