A Kenyan man living with HIV/AIDs, Kemboi Kimutai, is no different from Phenny Awiti and Doreen Moraa, who share their stories online.
The bold lad, who publicly disclosed his status three years ago, has been using social media to create awareness about HIV/AIDs.
How did he get infected?
Well, in previous interviews, Kemboi has always narrated how a lady she used to work for lured him into having sex with her.
I grew up in a humble background and had problems with school fees. While in high school before I could clear form four, I was forced to drop out and get a job so as to pay my fees.
I came to Nairobi where i was employed by a single mother as a garden boy. We were free and I opened up to her about my situation and she told me would help but under one condition.
Kemboi didn’t inquire much about it and one day, the woman asked him to sleep with her.
She asked me if I was ready and I told her yes because I was desperately in need. I ended up sleeping with her and that’s where my life really changed.
Kemboi learnt that he was infected two years later. He said she was the only woman he was with and after trying to reach out to her, he found out that she had already died because she refused to take medication.
The lad says he lived in denial after five tests proved he has HIV positive. He kept it a secret to himself. He did not trust anyone with the information.
Just imagining of the time, Nov 2015 – Aug 2016, when I was newly diagnosed to be HIV positive. All this time I was in denial and kept it as a secret between me, myself and of course, HTS counsellor and the kits must have kept it a secret😎😎. I feared nothing in particular, literally, everything looked scary😲😲, little did I know there was going to be some way out.
This was the time I had to categorize people based on how much I will trust them. It was very surprising that I trusted no one close to me(family) but instead, I felt safe confiding on a stranger, unlike today where I literally believe in anyone trustworthy. It got to a time when I just felt like I was tired of putting myself into unnecessary circumstances, I had to pull myself out.
I had to come to reality, over five tests cannot lie. ”You have to be enrolled on medication as soon as possible” was a common phrase but never made sense to me. All I could do is convince myself,”how can I be on medication yet am not sick?” These are what later ‘forced’ me to change my mind and do it for them. I was forced to accept my status and be enrolled to medication just to fulfill there wishes 😂 😂. By then, I had no idea I was doing it for my own good, this sixth sense of self-realization came later.
In another post, Kimutai has advised those infected to accept the outcome and live positively.
Once tested and confirmed to be positive, accept and start your life from there. Be initiated to medication as soon as possible, don’t give time to HIV to breed in your body; suppress it as early as you can.
There is nothing that keeps you happy as a positive person like being virally suppressed (Undetectable).
The HIV/AIDs campaigner also urged Kenyans to get tested and know their status.
Stop stressing yourself about what you ain’t sure of, relieve yourself by being sure.
Flu, emaciation,diarrhoea, migraine, tonsils etc… are not signs and symptoms of HIV as most people allege. As a matter of fact,HIV has no unique signs that you can look at them a conclusively say I am positive or not. The only way is just getting tested; an under 30 minutes process will change your life.
You can do a test on your own or by visiting a testing facility. Self-testing kits are available in any chemist near you at a pocket-friendly price.
Still, you can visit any testing facility where apart from testing, you will be taken through counseling.
You will get to know about HIV as far as transmission, protection and living positively is concerned!
KNOW YOUR STATUS PLAN YOUR LIFE!.
Kimutai advises those living with HIV not to shy away from society but share their stories.
Having been in a serious battle and won, it is my turn to share tactics behind me coming out a victor.
Hiding may be an immediate solution but temporary,at sometimes things will get out of control. Living a private life is good and I know that but for how long will we hide? How long will we be fighting in silence? How long will it take us come out and confront this thing?
Some battles are worth taking them head-on. Yes, head on! Instead of waiting for people to start speculations and discrimination you, tell them to their faces. Show them how you are confident about yourself and how you are not going to bow down to such mere issues. Be brave enough and take the bull by its horns.
Think about living with peace at heart, think about disclosure.