Tuesday, February 01, 2011

The Good, The Bad, and The Ugly of adopting an HIV+ child

I just love my e-buddy Chantelle's blog! She wrote THIS POST today and I just had to pass it on. Head on over to read more truth about raising a child with HIV.
It never really occurred to me that there are those out there that think I must be keeping all of the hard stuff about HIV adoption off of the blog. For the record, I'm not! ;-) Like Chantelle said, it is so not a big deal. And I can say that, even though we've had some issues surrounding the HIV that most kids don't have (slow hair growth, g-tube, GI issues resulting from g-tube).
The other day we were getting out of the car to head in to a family gathering. It's dry in OK this time of year and I noticed Kendi's lips were all cracked. There was a big chunk of skin just begging to be ripped off. I can't STAND the look of super-chapped lips. Against much protest I ripped that sucker off! But then, her lip started bleeding. It wasn't just the typical little bundle of blood from ripped off skin--she was dripping! It was about to drip on her pretty dress so without thinking I put my finger under her lip and "caught" the drop of blood on my bare hand.
I must admit, that was a new one for me. I didn't even consider the HIV when I "caught" the blood. I saw that everybody around me sort of looked at me weird for a second (but nobody said a word). I headed over to some leaves, wiped off my hand, then headed inside (where I did wash my hands).

Am I worried about getting HIV? No. So NOT worried. Did I forget that she had HIV when I did that? Yep, totally. My point is, it is so NOT an everyday part of our lives that it's not even the top thing on my mind when there is blood in the picture. This is not something unique to my family. I hear this sort of thing from LOTS of families who have HIV+ kids.
If you want to talk about HARD stuff after adoption, let's talk about attachment and behavioral issues. This HIV stuff doesn't even have a chance of making it into the HARD category!


Chantelle 3:26 PM  

Thanks for the link! I just copied yours and put it as update to mine! :)

Erin 10:30 PM  

So, is it completely okay, open bleeding wound, to another open wound? Do you know? I am learning that maybe we could adopt an hiv + little one. But, I do wonder about that. Like, when you caught the dripping blood, would it have been a concern if you had a big cut on your own hand? Everything I am reading does say blood to blood is a possible transmission, but then it will say in parentheses, needles.
Thanks for blogging about this! Your children are beautiful!!