What Life with Herpes Looks like for 11 Years - Oh Sh*T Anniversary Pt.5
In case you're just tuning in and haven't been following along this weeks series, let me bring you up to date. This is my "oh shit anniversary", aka the week I got diagnosed with genital herpes. So I'm bringing you along for the emotional ride and sharing what my diagnosis was like.
At this point in the week I still had not received my diagnosis and there was still so much up in the air. I remember feeling so unsettled and was in limbo wondering if I had herpes and if it was going to change my life. I want to share this with you because it will bring awareness and support you if you are in this phase right now.
Let me fast forward you 11 years later to where I am now. Trust me back in 2011 I never thought that my life would be where it is now. I truly believed that when I was diagnosed with herpes I'd have to settle for everything that I wanted. I believed that my hopes, desires, dreams and feelings were no longer important and would go wayside because I was now diagnosed with the Scarlett Letter aka. Herpes.
It was a journey and I'm not going to say that it just happened over night. It took years for me to finally get my confidence back and begin to feel like myself again. It actually took me 2 years before I had the confidence to even date. I took baby steps daily and yes some days I regressed and went two steps backwards and but then other days I'd take 5 steps forwards. It was a wonderful journey to reconnect and discover who I truly was and start a new relationship with myself. I actually learned to love myself.
I was turning 30 and that was kind of the kick-starter to get me out of my Eeyore phase and into who I wanted to become. I actually took classes on how to fall in love and find your love, I did a ton of self help to work on the anger I had from being diagnosed with herpes and so on. I broke up with the guy I got herpes from, we dated for about 2 years after I got herpes just because I didn't have the confidence to move on. Lots of great things started to fall in my lap.
In 2017 so 6 years after being diagnosed with herpes I married the love of my life, Bill. This was something I never thought would happen. I truly believed that I would have to settle or sacrifice my love. I thought I'd have to marry someone who I didn't really love or just be single. Honestly, we have a pretty normal sex life. Yes, there are times that we can't have sex or don't have sex because I have an outbreak but there are other times we don't have sex either. And at the end of the day it's about finding someone you love and care about. It's about finding someone you want to spend all of your time with and go through life with. So what if there is a time here and there, you can't have sex?
In case you're new to my channel and don't know, we have a baby. Having a baby was something that I was worried about. I can remember asking the doctor when I was diagnosed with herpes if I could have a baby and if it would be safe. Bill and I went through IVF to have little Clinton. It was something that I personally enjoyed and found IVF to be so fascinating. We did have our ups and downs with getting baby Clinton. We were on the way to the fertility clinic when I got a call saying that embryo didn't defrost. Both Bill and I didn't know what that meant and were in denial.
I'm sure many of you are wondering if we had to go through IVF because I have herpes. And the answer is no. We didn't have to go through IVF because of me having genital herpes. This goes back to my point of wanting to love someone who you love and not settling. You don't want to have to go through life not feeling loved, supported or like you can't have your dreams come true.
In 2020 Bill and I welcomed baby Clinton into the world. I carried him for 9 months and had a vaginal delivery. So if becoming a parent and having a baby is something that is important to you then it is totally possible.
Honestly, I don't believe I'd be the person I am today without getting herpes. When I was diagnosed I was not taking care of my body, I was binge eating and pushing it from all angles. I was also in a place of not having confidence, I wasn't secure in who I was as a person. I would date guys who wanted me to change for them and I willingly did so. I was judgy about people and their situations and choices they made. I'd think things like that would never happen to me or I can't believe that person would be so stupid to get themselves into that situation and so on. Getting herpes allowed me to become honest to myself. I was able to stand up for want I felt was right for me. I truly believed that if I was rejected for having herpes then that guy wasn't right for me. It actually gave me more confidence with dating and owning who I was. I've just changed so much as a person and live life with gratitude and humility.
Tomorrow I'm going to walk you through my day and what it was like to get diagnosed with herpes.