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Philip D.

A Positive Spin

Adding Life to Our Years
July 7, 2010

Maybe it was pure coincidence that I had just begun working with a Life Coach several months before being diagnosed HIV positive, but then again you never know. Since I had no therapist at the time and was still unsure of who I could disclose my new status to, the hours that Geary and I spent on the phone "coaching" were precious and pivotal in the months that followed. In fact, I'd like to dedicate this post to the man that has taught me some fundamental lessons, more valuable than a year's supply of HIV meds. One in particular I'd like to run past all of you.

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June 23, 2010

I think it's safe to say that whenever I start a sentence, "Mom and Dad, I've got something I need to tell you both," they brace themselves for just about anything that might come out of my mouth. My life has, if nothing else, been decorated with a few stunning, life-changing "plot twists," and those two special people have seen me through each one, no matter what.

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Cry Me an Ocean (in the Desert)
May 5, 2010

When I say that I've cried more in the past two and a half years than I have in the rest of my life combined, I'm not really exaggerating. Since my diagnosis, it seems almost anything can get me going. Though a funny thing happened on the way to the Kleenex box; I discovered that I'd actually been missing out on something that can be as relaxing as a massage, uplifting as Confession and doesn't cost a dime. I'm Philip D. and I love a good cry.

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Dear John
April 14, 2010

It would be impossible to really tell the story about my experience with HIV and not mention you; the very best thing that came from all of "this". Your love has not only propped me up through some of the toughest times but it has shown me that even the darkest, blackest cloud might just have a lining so silvery that it defies words. It's quite possible that you're the one I'd been waiting my whole life for, but da, I never thought to look for an angel.

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Little Soldiers and Superheroes
March 30, 2010

March 25, 2008. At the time, I called it "the first day of the rest of my life". My medical chart refers to it as the day I started anti-retroviral therapy. Either way, it's an anniversary I will certainly never forget. As I look forward to a regimen change in a few weeks, I can't help but feel a bit sentimental.

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What Will You Do?
March 17, 2010

Several weeks ago, I attended a Town Hall meeting at the LGBT Center here in San Francisco, where some very learned men did their best to describe to a room full of lay people how leading medical minds propose to eradicate HIV from the body.

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Wingman: My Doctor and Me, a Medical Partnership
March 2, 2010

Recently, while preparing to be part of a patient panel of an AIDS Forum for second-year medical students, I struggled to find a way to describe the unique, relatively new relationship between myself and my doctor, since testing HIV positive.

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Someone Saved My Life Tonight
February 17, 2010

Of all the days to finish work early, why did it have to be this one? I now found myself with three hours to kill before I could pick up the results for my second confirmatory HIV test. Would I spend the rest of my life HIV positive or not? That was the question; and before long I'd know the answer. To really understand how I used the time, we'd have to flash back to August 1995.

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The Fortune Teller
February 3, 2010

Two years ago, I tested positive for HIV. Figures it would happen on the longest night of the year. Actually, it felt more like the longest night of my life, and to say I was blindsided would be putting it mildly. Why else would I get tested the week of Christmas with 10 days off and no particular Holiday plans? In between grocery shopping and picking up my dry cleaning, I dropped in to the neighborhood Rapid Testing site since it had been over a year since my last results.

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A Positive Spin
January 26, 2010

Why am I here? Because I really like this Web site. In my opinion, it's one of the best sources of HIV information on the Internet. I still have much to learn, but I've also picked up some choice tidbits in my short yet action packed two-year journey with HIV that I'd like to share. I suppose that's what it really boils down to, sharing what we have learned to make it easier for those who will follow.

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A Positive Spin

Philip D.

Philip D.

After testing HIV positive in 2007, I promised myself that I would make something "good" from all that I was handed. From the very beginning, each time I was presented with an obstacle or challenge, I also received some help. Usually in the form of a person, sometimes an opportunity; but I have grown so much, it has made it impossible for me to call the past few years "bad." Although I've never written much of anything before, I have been so incredibly fortunate, I feel like I must pay it forward somehow. Maybe by sharing my experience, it will help those starting later in the game, on the fast track to HAART, or anyone that's feeling a bit isolated or "stuck" with their diagnosis.

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