Susie is one of Pozhet’s long term clients. Her life and perspective has changed significantly since she first visited our service many years ago. She has shared her story with us below.
My name is Susie. I contracted HIV 17 years ago, diagnosed 9 years ago. I was a single mother, 30 years of age and terrified to die and leave my children behind.
Over the years I have learned to live a stress free life with HIV. I don’t let HIV control my world. I see the doctor’s only when necessary, take my meds, and keep reasonably healthy. I was allergic to one medication I was on for three years, so that was hard, but I changed meds and now am on one tablet a day.
I work with acquired brain injury patients as I m a welfare worker and I love that. I have disclosed to my employer who is excellent about it, and she employs me permanent part-time to allow for doctors appointments and so forth.
I also attend the retreats Pozhet hold. This helps me to keep great mental health, socialise, and discuss HIV with friends. I met my husband at one of these retreats and always look forward to the next year. By maintaining a solid relationship with ACON workers, Pozhet and seeing my HIV specialist I am happy and healthy, and I now have two grandchildren to live for!