Managing Death with Poison

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Status: In Progress  |  Genre: Non-Fiction  |  House: Booksie Classic


This chronicals my very personal battle with AIDS after 20 years and my desparate desire to stop taking medication all together. And, my experience with being diagnosed, my empty personal life and
my hope for the future.

Submitted: June 30, 2018

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Submitted: June 30, 2018

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Many think it’s a manufactured virus, other’s deny it’s existence all together. But, only those actually living with it, know it’s true effects on the human body. In the early days, many lives were lost and fear gripped society. Then, revolutionary medicines came about that rendered it “manageable”. But without the painful stigma, not one bit, fear persisted. Big Pharma, wanted congratulations for making it livable, but I oppose that summation. Sure, the afflicted survive, but not before being made a cash cow of, without so much as a gift card given, to the patient.. However, pharmacies cherish a virus carrying customers, due to the plethora of medications that are necessary to stay in “good health”. They might even deliver birthday gifts of Calvin Klein cologne and other products, if you’re committed to them. The distressed  are technically alive, but is it really living? Making doctor appointments, going on referrals and remembering to maintain the regiment like clockwork, is like a job on it’s own. The virus of which I speak is the, Human Immunodeficiency Virus, more commonly known as the acronym HIV.
It started, for me, November 8, 1998. Two weeks after my 25th birthday. In the late afternoon on that day a doctor told me that I tested positive for HIV antibodies, after going in to the ER because swallowing had become a painful problem. They made a courtesy call, reminding me to make my appointment (when I knew of my doom). I had an “opportunist infection” called Thrush. Usually, an infant acquired illness. In my second or third doctor visit, I was told that my true diagnosis was AIDS, the disease that somehow was caused(?) by the HIV virus. Perhaps, the doctor was trying to scare me into taking medications when he told me that at 175 T-cells, I was well below the 200 that is the demarcating line of symptomatic HIV and “full blown” AIDS. What is meant by “full blown” anyway? The fear tactics didn’t work, because honestly, I felt liberated from all that was expected of me in life.  Marriage would not be assumed of me, nor children. Had I understood the solitude that accompanied that liberty, perhaps I wouldn’t have felt so free. However, the “scare” ignited a peculiar responsibility in me, for the “life” that I have been granted. Conceding, I took the pills prescribed to me. They were new medicines of a family that came out only three years earlier called protease inhibitors. These meds have nothing organic about them.
After twenty years of taking the three drug “cocktail”, I found myself wanting another way. At least, consider another(holistic) way. However, no doctor I’ve ever had would even recognize the suggestion. A friend of mine says that if I give up the medications, that I will die. I guess she supposes that my body is used to the poisons, I mean pills. But, I don’t believe that and since my body survived the absolute HELL that I exposed it to, I think that it deserves a little credit. I don’t even know if I would feel different, without poisons coursing through my veins. My standard operating level is pleasant already. However, I would attribute mood more to diet, but I’m sure the pills are affecting me somehow. 
The internet and it’s making access to knowledge widely available, has ruined many things for people and confidence in the medical establishment, is the top, for me. The long term effects of these medications is unknown due to the fact that they were so new. As I discovered more about Big Pharma, their use of the power of suggestion in commercials, and the curious introduction of new name medications for the same disease as the previous year, I wanted as little to do with them as possible. 
But, I was tied to this disease. And, it was one that required copious amounts of Big Pharma’s product, on a daily basis. At first, my resolve was solid, I figured that I would be taking these pills all of my life, what was left of it, and was relatively satisfied with that. My side effects were minimal and they didn’t seem to affect my mental state . 
Then I discovered Dr. Sebi, an African-American man, who claimed to have  cured AIDS, cancer, diabetes and many other lifelong illnesses requiring daily medication. With a cursory study of this man, I concluded with that diet was as important as anything, to my health. I researched many fruits that we as Americans, have never been introduced to and vitamins that we don’t know about. As well as, treatments that I can only figure were denied to us because they didn’t support Big Pharma, they being one of the largest contributors to presidential campaigns. Many politicians are swayed by Big Pharma, so much that, they will not pass any legislation that even begins to threaten their revenue.
Meanwhile, Dr. Sebi was brought up on federal charges, in front of a court in New York and jailed, not for serving those who sought him out, but because he was promoting a method counter to the American Big Pharma model, but he prevailed. Only later to died in a Honduran jail as those that worked for him abused his reputation for profit. Dr. Sebi promoted a diet based regimen, using minimally, supplements that were his formulas. There are other doctors, online, that champion a, clean water, clean food and taking NO chemicals into your body, as a way to cure one’s self. Western medicine has NO interest in cures and cares not if you live or die, only that they make a profit off of your symptoms, before you perish.
Reading this information, that I knew instinctively, motivated me to move away from Big Pharma. There are many fruits and vegetables that boost immunity. And, the human body is a magnificent self-regulating machine that heals itself. I gleaned from the doctors online, that if you stop the damage, no chemicals, that the body will use the energy to fight off the poisons, to rehabilitate it’s defenses.
Crushing solitude was an unwelcomed gift from HIV. I didn’t believe that I could ever have a girlfriend or that anyone would want to be around me. That belief was reinforced by my lack of adeptness in the social realm. But now, I have overcome that. I had a girlfriend, briefly, in 2014, but I still keep my affliction a secret. The hurtful stigma is alive and well due to lack of education, and frankly, lack of interest or necessity. 
With the legalization of Cannabis in my home-state of California, general anxiety with giving this virus a home is mitigated quite well. However, there are other psychological afflictions that befell me, as well as many others. A long battle with depression, exacerbated by my diagnosis, was a fight that at the time, doctors treated with a plethora of anti-depressants, (which took years to dial in.). I would lay in bed at night thinking of ways to off myself until I was faced with my own lack of nerve to do it. 
I was living in a house with many roommates In the backyard I had tied a noose out of a long extension cord. Then, all my roommates went out and only I remained at home. It was a showdown, with myself. I spotted a beam that I could loop the noose around and, visually chose a spot to tie off at. But, I could not get up to a level that would break my neck. Suffocating was a misery that I was not eager, nor prepared to endure. I still wanted out of life, but it was not going to happen on that day. I soon began asking myself, upon waking in the morning if I wanted to end it all, and if I didn’t, I would get on with living. Sadness, I saw as a complete waste of time, and rather ridiculous. I tend to be an extremist, seeing the world in black and white. Sadness is a gray emotion. My depression only ceased when I fully gave into it. But, by that time, depression didn’t put up much of a fight. However, I still had  anxiety, like jagged residue from a prior disorder.
After 20 years of carrying this virus with me and seeing no improvement, I neglected to arrive to my next doctor appointment, then quit going all together. In the first year away, my cell count doubled the highest count I ever had while seeing a doctor on a regular basis, since I started medicines. It made me wonder what was being accomplished with all the money given to research. The virus was still undetectable in my blood, as it had  been since the first months. I began to understand the mind over matter side of being healthy. It certainly was not the only facet, but for me, it was an encouraging observation. I am currently beginning my second year. 
When I decide to go holistic, I considered documenting my journey in an online video, hoping to inspire others in my position. To possibly show that the system we’ve been sold, in America, is not the only one. And, to reinforce the power that our minds have and that of our bodies, in maintaining wellness of body, mind and soul. Also, to demonstrate the “impossible” for the encouragement of others.
 


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