Saturday, July 30, 2011

beginning of a life time

Barely an hour from now, I will start the beginning of a life time. Life time commitment to taking ARV's.

When the brown bag was handed to me yesterday by my doctor, I simply said. My new partner, my lifetime partner. She smiled, so do I.  This is it. The beginning of a life time. I have already pledged my allegiance to these meds.

Let's see what happens next. I'll tell you soon. I hope it's good news.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

reality bites

We do this almost yearly, but this is the first time I went out of the country with the "thing". I am excited and a bit scared on day one as I don't know what will happen to me within the next 3 days. And I am not even on ARV's. I was supposed to meet my doctor today to get my first set of meds, but I received an SMS from Doc last night as soon as I got through the friendly immigration officer. "Lets meet on Friday, bumabaha na sa taft." (Yes, I am a PGH guy). So, after taking a leave from work for 4 days, I have to take a day off again to meet with my doctor. As originally planned, when I got my meds today, I will start by weekend, to give room for the side effects. Just in case, I can go immediately to the hospital and meet my doctor.

After four days of relaxation, sight seeing and SHOPPING - yes, I shopped literally 'til I dropped. For a while I almost forgot that I am sick. Walking from 9am until 8pm. It's like going to work, and extending a bit, only you go to malls and stores. Happiness!

And now back to reality. I have to go to work tomorrow. Have to make reports. I need to submit everything tomorrow because I have to take a day off again on Friday. I have to go for now, I still have to unpack my things, sort some pasalubong.

Back to being paranoid about the "thing" .

Tuesday, July 12, 2011

Hesus, Hilumin Mo

15 years ago when I first heard this song. It was one of our recollections. I cried.

 Today, I am humming the song. Tears rolling down my cheeks.

O Hesus, hilumin Mo
Aking sugatang puso
Nang aking mahango
Kapwa kong kasimbigo

Hapis at pait Iyong patamisin
At hagkan ang sakit
Nang magningas ang rikit

Aking sugatang diwa't katawan
Ay gawing daan
Ng 'Yong kaligtasan 

Lord, heal me. Heal my mind and my heart. Let me be an instrument to help and reach out to others.

Monday, July 11, 2011

Sugar Coated

Finally, I was able to talk to my parents and told them by health condition, only it was sugar coated.

Sister came up with a good idea, "Tell Mom, but just tell her about your weak immune system and that just like other maintenance drug (hypertension, diabetes) you need to take one for life".  No drama, no crying, no elaborate details. We even came up with a plan, kids will be joining us for lunch so that mood will be light and that they will not ask for details.

Me: "Ma, I had a follow up check up, and I was told that my immune system is weak. Mas madali ako kapitan ng sakit. Pero may ibibigay na gamot, parang sa highblood/diabetes, maintenance na. For life."

Ma: "Naku, mag-iingat ka."

Me: "Opo naman. Eto pala yung mga bawal na food sa akin..."

And with that, I was able to tell my parents my health condition. In a way I was relieved. Although there's always that guilty feeling that they have to know the bigger picture. But they are old enough to worry and completely understand my condition. With my sister and friends behind me, I know I'll get through.

I'll get by with a little help from my friends. And the wonder of prayers.

Saturday, July 09, 2011

Sister Act

I've been wanting and planning to do this since day 1. But really don't know how to.

Last night, I finally got the chance to talk to my sister.

She asked me right away, "Bakit may problema ka?"...It's unusual for me to dropby their place without the kids around, I usually go there to play with the kids. I simply said "Oo". And so I told her everything.

At first she was confused, I am not expecting her to understand everything. What she knows now is that I have to start the medication right away, on July 27 we will be going to PGH for the counselling before I start taking the ARV's.

No drama - not the big one that I expected. We cried a bit.

Me: "Ang una kong naisip our parents, I know that I have to take care of them."

Ate: "Wag mo na isipin yun."

Me: "Pati mga kids. Alam mo naman na ayoko malalayo sa kanila (me being afraid that doctors might ask me to stay away from them)."

Ate: "Hindi, wag mo iisipin yun"

Me: "Sorry, kasi binigyan pa kita ng iisipin. Sorry, kasi pasaway ako."

Ate: "Hindi ako galit. Wala kang pwedeng gawin an ikakagalit ko. Ang importante ngayon alagaan mo ang sarili mo."

And this made me cry. Hearing that from my sister. I know that there are still questions in her mind right now. But what's important is knowing that I have her support and love.

Needless to say more, thank you Ate and I love you.

Wednesday, July 06, 2011


WOW! Yan lang ang nasabi ko sa Doctor ko when she showed my cd4 result. One opportunistic disease like TB, Pneumonia and that's it!

Lutang...yan ang state of mind ko ngayon. Mabuti nga nakasulat pa ako - hindi naman talaga ako nagsusulat to begin with. Ang daming questions sa utak ko ngayon...Pero kung ano ang uunahin kong sagutin, hindi ko alam.

Isa lang ang alam ko...I want to live longer so I have to take care of myself...But the cd4 count only increases by 50 per year...Mahaba-habang laban ito...And I am ready.

I know I MUST start taking the ARV's real soon...But since may travel plan na months ago, I asked Doc if I can defer until makabalik ako...4 days lang naman...Two weeks kasi ang window period for the side effects of the ARV's...Mahirap na if doon pa lumabas, hindi pa naman alam ng mga kasama ko about my condition...Baka mag-worry sila...And malamang pag lumabas ang side effects while I was out of the country, ma-quarantine ako pagbalik ko...Ayoko naman nun.

Thank God for the Hepa and TB shots na pinagtiyagaan ng Mom ko nung bata pa kami...I have no Hepa nor signs of TB...So Doc gave me meds to take...Azithromycin and Cotrimoxazole...These will help me fight and prevent from acquiring the opportunistic diseases...I hope na walang side effect or if meron man, very minimal...Wala naman ako allergy sa gamot...I am hoping and praying as well that when I start taking the ARV's, very tolerable ang side effects.

Magulo ang entry ko...I am not a writer...This is my first blog...Magulo, parang utak ko ngayon.

And the battle has started...And this is a lifetime commitment...

You know who you are...I couldn't thank you more for all the help, guidance, support and the unconditional love...Here's hoping that we will fight our battle together.

This is not just for me, this is for the my parents, my sister, my friends...And to you...Because I am a son, a brother, a friend...And a fallen angel...