HIV! The Positive Diva Speaks!
Despite the conversation that HIV/AIDS is a silent killer, I beg to differ. The voice of fear screams loudly, the spread of stigma and ignorance is deafening, the loss of love ones from the virus is real, the grief is our living with the shame and blame is disheartening! How can anyone see the effects of the HIV/AIDS virus in our community pretend that to recognize its impact? Recently, I spoke to a group and said that each one should look in the mirror and see the face of HIV. There is no certain look. It definitely looks like me! I did not have to audition for the virus. It cared not about my race, gender, gender preference, social position, education, or religion. I never went to a physician to get a prescription for HIV. It can happen to anyone. A marriage license, wedding ring, and a mortgage does not protect you from getting infected with HIV.
As an professional woman, minister, daughter, mother, sister, grandmother, and friend, I must lend my voice to raise awareness to save lives. I must be the face of truth, the good, bad, and ugly regarding HIV. It does not matter how you become infected! The results are the same, stigma, shame, blame, and discrimination become a part of everyday life. You are judged, called bad names, and often told that no one should love you. You are invited to fewer events, receive fewer calls, and sometimes no visits from family or friends. We are social animals and need to be hugged, kissed, laughed with, held, and cried with. We need to be encouraged and supported.
I am more than just a woman living with HIV/AIDS. I am the voice of the silent, the face of those ashamed to disclose, the strength of those afraid, I am wind under the ones that need help to rise. I am an advocate and servant!
Thank you reading my commentary, get tested,get test results, protect yourself and those you love, get involved, help make a difference!
Dr. Joyce Turner Keller,
“The Positive Diva”Read more »