Last Sunday was World AIDS day. Thirty years ago I lost countless friends during my days of drug addiction , to what was then called fever of unknown origin. Later named AIDS.
I was diagnosed with AIDS in 1993 . As I sit here this morning I am grateful to be alive and healthy.
When I was given my results , I made a decision to believe that I was bigger than a diagnosis. I made an intention in that moment to live a vibrant life despite the label and all it implied. I am a Registered nurse, so I knew the dark places this diagnosis could take me if I allowed it.
I made a choice to surround myself with people who saw me and not a label.
People who believe we have a spirit in us that is bigger than any dis – ease that may appear in our lives.
Through my many hospitalizations in the 90’s, I kept my intention clear in my mind despite what my body was going through. It has been a journey of self discovery and courage building, indeed.
My intention for this next year is to share my story more. To inspire all women living
with a life changing diagnosis, to see themselves as whole and capable of living
the life they choose. All things are possible. I am living proof of that.
A diagnosis is just that. A label and list of things that could happen. Not that it has to. It is not etched in stone. You are the creator of your experiences and the meaning you give them.
We each have the power within to sit still and ask for direction for the next right step. You are unique and can weave a life and story like no other.
If you are a woman who is living with a life changing diagnosis, breathe. Sit still and reach for what will support you through this phase of shock , fear and indecision. You will grow through this. I have.
Remember you are bigger than a diagnosis.
I am Doretta Gadsden of Women will Bloom and I am living with an AIDS diagnosis.
Yes, I have known fear and indecision at times.. I have known moments of hopelessness when my body was not at its best . When I wanted to run and could barely walk.
I also know if you reach inside, trust your journey and believe in your strength , you will come out on the otherside.
For more support connect on me @ email@example.com or visit me on FB