Stories From ASAAP


How would you like to describe yourself?

Before I got HIV virus, I had been working and enjoying my life. Everything was perfect that time. What ever I thought I got in my life. But life will never run in the same path all the time. My life turned into different path when I got HIV. I was so sick. I started worrying and I was so weak, isolated, sad, hopeless with my life. Felt like my life was going to stop any time soon.

What is a life experience you cherish?

I grew with the Buddhist religious belief. My parents taught me a lot. So, I believe these values. I never ever walk on a path which will affect others. I believe in karma: do good and good will come to you. If I do good in this life, my next life will be good. Walking with these beliefs, I received a lot from universe. I feel that I am a lucky person. I don’t have any regrets.

What role has ASAAP played in your life?

ASAAP gives me hope. After I connected with ASAAP, all my anxiety reduced slowly and slowly. In ASAAP support group meeting I got chance to learn from my peer experience and also shared my own experiences to the group. I enjoy being in the company of my peers. Having this kind of space gives me hope in my life. I don’t have family in this country. But my peers are my family. Whenever I need any kind of help, I just go to ASAAP to get help. They are my problem solvers.

I don’t have any anxiety and on top of that I am getting busy with my daily schedule. I spend my time doing the things which give me pleasure because life is short, I enjoy spending time with myself and help others too. I can say that I am a jovial person. I am living a peaceful life. Thanks to all who support me.

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Some people might know this little expression, being a West-Indian coming to Canada, people say, “You’ll never get anywhere in life, because you people, you dance three steps forward, two steps back.” Say it again, “Three steps forward, two steps back.”

Well I want to tell you one thing I’ve learned here at ASAAP that’s helped me is to be mindful of how I carry myself. I’ve added two more movements. Despite the challenges that may be, I’ve added, bend down and turn around, so here we go:

“Three steps forward, bend down, turn around, two steps back. Breathe. I’m now five steps ahead.”

Blessed are those affected and infected with HIV and AIDS, may you smile, and truly know happiness as you move forward in life.