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Tim-FarFromLoozen's Story


Hi my name is Tim; I am 48 years old. I have been HCV Positive since September 2001. I pretty much know when I was exposed and how I was exposed.

I struggled with substance abuse for many years. I would have sporadic lengths of time clean & sober, always followed by relapse into addiction again. This lifestyle took me on many different roads. I went from 14 years as a Marketing Representative to chronically unemployed and homeless.

What I didn’t know then and I know now, is I self medicated a chronic Mental Health Disorder with my own drugs. My drug of choice was an injectable opiate, when not that, then alcohol.

I was diagnosed with HCV in December 2001, up until then I had always tested negative. I was always careful not to share my paraphernalia as HIV & HCV was always a possibility. My longtime partner and using buddy did just that, she shared a syringe with an acquaintance and did not tell me. When I tested positive, she confessed and said she had exposed us in September. She was the ONLY person I ever shared with.

I accept this. My addiction exposed me to the risk. I hold no animosity towards her. It’s just one of those things. If you dance, you have to pay the band. I danced.

It took another 6 months before I came to terms with my addiction and HCV status. On June 17th 2002, I used my last time. My partner, who is also HCV positive, is a beautiful, talented and intelligent 36 year old. She is still using as far as I know. To get clean and stay clean, I had to let her go. She is in God's hands

When I had been clean 6 months my Doc did the PCR to find out where I stood. It was both good and bad. Good Genotype and bad Viral Load. A month later we did the Biopsy. He was concerned, Stage III, so I started Peg-Intron and Ribiviran in March 2003.

I have been clean and sober for almost 17 months now, the longest period of time in the last 17 years. I am fortunate that I have an income, Social Security; I could not imagine working full time and doing Tx.

I live in a large house with 5 other clean and sober addicts, so I am never alone. I attend 12 step meetings as much as possible and have gotten involved in the service structure to give back what was so freely given to me.

My life is VERY different today. I can spend time with me and feel comfortable doing so. I used to run from trouble and everywhere I went “I” was there. I’ve stopped running. There is nowhere to go anyway.

I was adopted at birth and both of my adoptive parents have passed away. In November 2002 I started looking for my BirthMother. The internet is a wonderful tool. I found my BirthMother and 3 half siblings. I spent Christmas of 2002 with my new found family and stay in touch regularly.

They know of my past and my HCV status and it matters none to them, I am family. Does it get any better than that?

The last PCR showed that I am undetectable and most things look good. My WBC, RBC and Platelets all are on the low side. My Riba was stopped for a while and they came up some. I am now back on 200mg. Riba/Day, low dose. Doc wants me to do the full year, so I am little over ½ way home.

Life is good. God is better.


FarFromLoozen . . . . . . .



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    Page last updated: November 11, 2003

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