When I last left off I was walking out of the Health Dept after just finding out that I was HIV positive.
Well to be correct I was told I was most likely positive a second round of test would be done to confirm the results. It was another two weeks before these test came back. Thats when I got the little piece of paper confirming that with Western Blot test I was positive for HIV antibodies. I must admit I had held out a slim bit of hope that it would not come back positive. Hey a guy can dream can't he.
Now in the movies you would cut from this scene to one where the person is in the hospital with doctors hoovering over saying there was nothing else they could do. In real life a whole list of thing have to be done.
Since I had no insurance, I was told I could go to Pinellas Cares Clinic and see a doctor there. Now I was expecting to call them on the way and immediately be seen by a Doctor. Much to my surprise the Clinic didn't feel the same sense of urgency I did. My first appointment was set for the late part of February
(((((((note I have paperwork with actual dates on them somewhere and will probably make one post a timeline from beginning to end but for now approximate will work))))))
I might have tried to look on the bright side when I first got word, but after that it was all down hill. I have never experienced a countdown to something that consumed me the way waiting for my first doctors visit did. I did talk to a couple people who were positive and bottom line the things I learned from them just added to the dis information.
The day finally arrived and I reported to the Clinic, the paper work, form after form, i don't know how many times I signed my name and filled out my address eventually I saw a nurse. Now again I refer to movies over real life, in the movies they show the pills you get to take. But they don't show the 7 vials of blood they take. I am sure the nurse explained what they were for . words like viral loads and blood counts. I don't really know it was a very "Fear and Loathing in Las Vegas" reality moment, I couldn't hear, I had extreme tunnel vision.
Let me try to give a different vision of how I felt. Instead of calling the friend that was supposed to pick me up I walked 78 blocks back to his house. I have no idea how long it took. My appt had been for 930 am and I arrived back at his house at 4 pm.
next time waiting for blood work results and dealing with the VA.