A decade ago memories were triggered by the mention of a place name you once went on holiday, a song playing on the radio or the smell of a lost loved one’s perfume or aftershave. We still at certain times of year or when visiting relatives flick through each other’s old photo albums to relive celebrations and different occasions (as well as fashion horrors) of our past.
The rise of social media means our memories are now more likely to be spoon-fed to us by way of technology and algorithms. It’s fun to look back at the exciting nights out, the messy weekends away or random jokes in the office. But there’s no filter and sometimes we’re reminded of the bad times, as well as the good.
This week memories from my Facebook timeline have taken me back to where my HIV journey began and my seroconversion.
I’ve still never felt as ill as I did during the two weeks in July 2009 when I was confined to my bed.
I wasn’t to be diagnosed until the November of that year and I am grateful and lucky that I decided to return to the sexual health clinic for a repeat test. My immune system was already compromised to a fair degree by the time I found I had HIV. I don’t like to imagine what may of happened to my health had I put it off any longer.
Nine years later I am living well, I’m still fortunate to have access to free treatment and care thanks to our amazing NHS and I know that the drugs protect me and my sexual partners.
The signs were there for me in July 2009. Don’t ignore yours. Use condoms, PrEP (or both). Get tested and keep testing regularly. If you find out you’ve got HIV start treatment and you can have a healthy and happy life.
5 thoughts on “The very beginning”
After how many month you was diagnosticated and what type of test you used?
Hi Dorin – it was ~5 months and a lab test (blood sample taken from arm, 12 week window period).
Thanks for your prompty reply, i am not for England,maybe my English is not so good
I asked because i had one risk about 4 month ago,i made 2 tests 4 gen. Test at 3months and 22 days and 4 months and 4 days,negative,i want to ask you if i can consider these tests definitive or have to make another tests,thanks a lot and sorry for my anxiety
4th gen test would have picked it up – even though we say 3 months/12 weeks the reality is for most it would pick up sooner than that. Take a look at the ‘When to test’ tool on http://www.startswithme.org.uk for more info on how often to test generally.
Yes Alex, these months i read something about window perios for these tests,my anxiety come from my symptoms,after 2-3 days i experienced many,bad general condition,mild fever and other and from here come these thoughts about late seroconverter, maybe my body do not produce antibodies,i don know……..maybe false negative result