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A man of many words. Profane, profound, loyal to a fault and a right rat bastard. I love the finer things in life: expensive cigars, cheap women and all the salted, cured meats I can eat. A friend to dogs, lover of humanity and despiser of people. If I were King the world would be a better place, because, well...I would be King! Oh, and I like ice cream.

Thursday, January 10, 2008

My Education in HIV/AIDS

Today I "shadowed" a Pediatric HIV/AIDS physician at the local clinic. What an education. Met a lot of staff folks. All very dynamic, giving people.

But it was the kids that made the experience unforgettable.

I met a young teen-aged lady who found out she did NOT have HIV. Seeing the realization on her face was palpable. The relief that she was not going to die changed her whole persona. I said afterwards that as days go she had just had a pretty darned good one!

But there was also the cutest little three month old HIV positive baby boy, a sixteen year old HIV positive girl and a set of four-year-old identical twins in which one was HIV positive and the other HIV negative. All were in for treatment of non-AIDS type complaints, like colds or to check their blood levels. They were all symptom free.

It was an exposure to a world I have to date not known. This will be my life for the next two and a half years.

An interesting point: The doctor told me that due to the medications now available AIDS is a management problem in much the same manner as diabetes. Life expectancy will not be as long probably as it would if the patient was negative. Same as with diabetes. Plus we don't know what will be developed in the future in the fight. But , HIV positive folks can look toward living a basically normal life. Twenty years ago that was out of the question.

But for those of you who think AIDS is God's retribution for some kind of lifestyle, tell it to that three month old baby. Then go to Hell.

2 comments:

Jan Doble said...

Go Mike! I couldn't have said that last line more clearly myself. And by the way, thank you for the meditations on pain release. Meditation alone helps me focus on things other than pain. But it also helps to have a little back-up support along the way. So, thanks. Bless your kind, caring soul. Jan

JJ said...

I like how you tell it like it is!

Your new fellow PC bud,

Jen J

Hey, do you mind if I send your blog to a friend of mine, you know, the courageous woman who moved to Afghanistan after 9/11?