Saturday, 22 December 2012

As one life seems to end, another Blossoms

The Orchid flower is one of the most beautiful flowers in my opinion yet can be very temperamental without the right care. Blossoming sometimes for months in my experiences until the flowering season ends. Trimming the ends making the plant look like a tough leafed shrub lacking any beauty as it did once  and caring for the plant as if nothing had changed, is your best bet for it to blossom over and over again.

Being newly diagnosed HIV positive does not mean that life has to end for you, just like the Orchid a new life for you too has started to bare its buds and is striving to blossom, you only need let it.
Speaking to a friend of mine who in 2003 found out about their status and was understandably devastated, they told me once they had found out life to them became more important than what they had thought of it. In their words “Life was just a play it day by day sort of thing. No real meaning, but now there’s so much I can see that I didn’t before.” They said that life before being diagnosed was in fact one big party, never sticking to a job and stumbled from city to city in the UK. Finding out forced them to become in their words again “Grow up” and take charge of their life. That same friend is in a relatively well paid job and has being climbing up the ladder in their industry, bettering themselves for years now, they live alone, party with friends and now is planning on having a child, biologically, so you see life for them has blossomed and continues to.

How does one living with HIV have children? I asked myself that same question, but where there’s a will there also may be a way, the way is treatments. I came across the term ‘Sperm-washing’ and had no clue what that meant, in fact I thought if the male partner was positive then he’d ejaculate in a cup and somehow washing the sperm in a soapy substance. Sperm washing rests on the premise that HIV-infected material is carried primarily in the seminal fluid rather than in the sperm itself. The technique which is used separates sperm from seminal fluid. When the sperm has been washed, there are many ways it can be used. The simplest of these is to perform a technique called intra-uterine insemination (IUI), where the washed sperm is placed directly into the uterus of the female partner. This is done when she is most likely to get pregnant, so around her ovulating cycle. If there are any other fertility problems that may occur there are procedures that you may be familiar with like IVF (In vitro fertilisation) eggs are inseminated with the washed sperm  and ICSI (Intra-cytoplasmic sperm injection) where they directly inject the sperm  into the egg. However if the female is the one which is positive, she would have to carry on taking her treatments as normal or be advised to switch treatments for the health of the baby. I also heard that having a cesarean can lower the risk of transmission to the unborn baby. In all scenarios the viral load of the person would be advised to be undetectable before and would be monitored throughout the pregnancy.

The future gets brighter everyday and as most people walk through life, they find themselves in relationships too. Find another Orchid to make a lovely hybrid is not an easy task, but when you find the right compatible partner life for you can have new blossoms of joy.
Rushing into things is not advised, too many young people have done so and without the right education and protection have received news they did not expect. Take your time and by all means be honest to yourself about what you intend to gain from a partnership. As many good well intentioned people there are in the world there are those that would, I would say be “The snakes in the grass with the venom on their tongues.” I’m not saying keep your status to a minimum, but you don’t particular what to start a journey with someone that understandably you don’t want every Tom, Dick and Sarah knowing about your HIV positive status, because yes it is still an untalked about issue amongst many whom may not be as educated as you, the last thing you want is added stress in your life. On the positive look on your endeavours of find a possible partner, you should be honest with them once you feel you can trust them, get to know them before become physically intimate.
Many social networking sites out there especially amongst the Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual and Transgendered communities (LGBT), social networks allow you the option to disclose your HIV status or not.
Because you are becoming more knowledgeable of the virus and you now know that just because a life you thought you had has ended, another and many are about to begin, remember the most important thing is to take care of yourself, love yourself and through doing this you inturn will be able to protect others and hopefully find your partner you decide you want to have a life with.
Life as you know it, has not ended, it’s just found a beginning to a new path you can enjoy once again.

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