When I was diagnosed with HIV in 1997 my first thought was my 7-year-old daughter. Who will care for her, and who will love her unconditionally the way that I have? My tears and pain were because I just knew in my heart that I was going to die soon and there was no one who could convince me otherwise. When she was born it was one of the happiest days of my life that I had ever experienced. I gave birth to a life and this tiny little baby I was responsible for, she was depended on me. This precious 8 pound 2-ounce baby girl was all that mattered. I vowed to give her everything she needed. Even going through a bad relationship with her father who was addicted to drugs and abusive it didn’t even matter anymore because being a mom made me feel like I had a new start. I worked to give her all she needed she was such a loving girl always hugging her mommy. Her Christmases were huge and to always see that great big smile of hers made me so complete. We did everything together and one of my happiest thoughts with her was when she started kindergarten instead of driving her to school I walked beside her as she drove her Barbie car, she loved that pink Barbie car.
Can you imagine after finally leaving a terrible relationship thinking that you and your daughter will live happy together with no more worries and you find out you have been diagnosed with HIV? I felt like I was being punished like I did something wrong. Why was this happening to me and what do I do now? My world was my daughter and I was so afraid that I will never get to see her grow up and that’s all I wanted. I was always crying and praying that I stay alive just to see her turn 18 years old so no one else will have to raise her. My prayers came true, she is now 26 years old and still just as beautiful as she was when she was born. The ARV’s (HIV medications) kept me here to see all that I wanted in her life and then some, what more could I ask for. Faith once again saw me though!