From The Author (circa 2001)
I’m fifty-seven years old. I have AIDS, Hepatitis C and I’m diabetic on top of all that. Because of one of the medications I took for the HIV virus, I’ve developed neuropathy. The damage to my nervous system gives me intense pain in my foot from time to time. With all that, there’s a lot of medication to take, and a lot of things I have to do in order to stay healthy. If you focus on your medical condition and nothing else, sooner or later you’re gonna start feeling down. I’m a witness to that!
The title I Really Didn’t Mean To Get HIV entered into my spirit one evening while ministering in Wilmington. I was participating in a seminar at the Northeast Community center on 28th and Pine, and in the middle of my testimony, I said, “You know, I really didn’t mean to get HIV.” When I got home that night, it dawned on me that this was something that God was asking me to do. I do believe in my spirit that He called me to go back over my life and reflect on some things and some moments, and some of the people I’ve met along the way.
Livingston N. Lee, Jr.
What led up to me being HIV positive? Several things. As I touched on before, lack of education, lack of knowledge of words, identity crisis, (who am I?) not knowing whose I really was (other than my mom and dad’s). Who did I belong to, what did I belong to, what was my destiny, where was my dreams, where was my hopes? What happened? Where did I fall through the cracks? I had a college degree; what went wrong? How in the world could a person such as Livingston Nathaniel Lee, Jr. become HIV-positive? Because of his behavior and one decision.
Choices, choices that we make, decisions that we make, and who we make these decisions with.For those who might be blaming somebody for giving this to them, or even might be blaming God for this, stop right there. Except for those folks who were genuinely minding their own business and got this thing because their significant other brought it home to them or through a blood transfusion, we had a hand in this.
Remember, AIDS means ACQUIREDImmunodeficiency Syndrome. It just don’t jump on us; we have to do something to get this thing, and those who are not yet infected can do something NOT to get it.