"I'm going through 25 years HIV-positive…"

I'm a three times felony, I haven't got arrested in 25 years, I have a good family, I'm working as a trainee, HIV pre-educator as a counselor, getting my life back together, you know? I got a great home, a great family, I just got to stay away from negative people, places and thing, it does work if you listen, I'm in one of the best rehab there is, Daytop, I did four years, I lasted clean 15 years, it must've been a good program if I lasted that long, 25, 15 years clean, you know? Other than that, I'm a grandma, I'm just kickin' to stay alive, you know, I been with the virus 20 years. And it's, I'm grateful. I give it away. I'm very grateful, good things are coming to me. I have no medication, my T cells are 800, you know, I can go to a trainee and teach other people that it's okay, that we gonna live, and live longer life, it doesn't mean it's a life threat, cause it's not a death threat, you know? It's just like a wake-up call, you know? To wake you up. That's how it woke me up, you know? I'm going through 25 years HIV-positive, and then, 25 years since I found out I haven't gotten high on drugs, so things are coming along very good, you know, and I'm grateful in programs that I go to.

I'm here today cause I have a misdemeanor for shoplifting, you know, I have three grandkids, you know, at that time I was very uptight. I didn't have no money, my coupons I don't get, it took two weeks, it's no excuse whatsoever, I'm still paying the price on what I gotta do, you know, I'm a trooper and a survivor, you know? Less than $10, I'm not even gonna say what I stole, it was less than $10, misdemeanor, you know? But, like I say, you know, I needed a couple dollars for milk and food, and, you know, cause I've been clean 25 years. Wasn't for drugs. But, welfare's helping me, you know, by giving me a job, I start tomorrow as a HIV pre-educator, that's talking about the medication...medication, therapy, everything that goes with it as a HIV-positive, that's why I live so long because I work with them. I used to for a year, they knocked it off because doesn't make sense give it to me cause my T cells too high. I'm good. I'm in good shape.

Evelyn
July 7, 2008