Friday, January 24, 2014

Catching Up with Friends

I miss some of my good PLU friends. I haven't seen them for more than 6 months now. Well, that's because I have been avoiding them since I got sick. They don't know I'm positive (well, yeah, this is what HIV stigma does). 

Since I no longer look sick (I already gained 18 lbs since I got out of the hospital, no more acne vulgaris on my face, and I'm not as unusually tanned as when I started my ARV), I decided to finally meet Simon, Angelo, and Dave yesterday. 

It was my treat, so the resto was my choice. As expected, I picked an uncrowded resto in Mandaluyong. It was a fun night. I'm back to my old alaskador self, making funny hirits and laughing out loud while having dinner. 

Another thing, I'm glad that no one asked why my skin got darker. I guess it's a good sign that I'm not as dark anymore. I'm nearing my normal skin color. However, one of them commented that I lost weight. That's understandable, I'm still about 5 lbs short from my pre-sickness weight. 

Unfortunately, I still did not tell them that I'm positive. I'm just not sure if they are capable of keeping secrets, especially when they're drunk. As part of our normal conversation, out of the blue, Simon mentioned that he knew some guys who had pneumonia and died. Angelo then commented that it could most likely be HIV! I didn't say a word, and changed the topic. They don't know that I also got hospitalized due to pneumonia last year. 

At the strike of 9pm, I went to the wash area, and discreetly took my dose of lamivudine without water.  Of course, no more beer after dinner. I guess, I have to get used to this norm now. 

Overall, it was fun meeting them. And I'm glad I don't look sick anymore. Looking forward to my next dinner with this bunch of guys again, hopefully soon when my CD4 shoots up beyond 200.