a woman speaks at a podium and the word bubble coming out of her lips turns into an eye with tears

Telling Your Story

In several conferences I have attended on health (particularly on hepatitis c), I have been told that you know you have healed when you can share your story to others and the emotions no longer get you choked up. That may be true for some people, but recently, I was asked to share my story to a local reporter doing a segment on life after being cured.

I share my story to spread awareness

I began as I always do, sharing how I was diagnosed with hep C shortly after my mother was diagnosed. I was and usually am strong and confident in sharing my story with reporters, etc; I go into these with ease and purpose about spreading awareness about hep C.

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I have done over dozens of interviews the last 6 years about my hep C fight and each time asked how it felt to face death and see your mom die from the same disease I had.  WELL, it does not go easy at that point. I do not think that anyone facing death so closely can ever share their story without at some point getting choked up. It is raw, it is personal, and yes, it is terrifying to think of.

My family's battle with hep C

Some interviews I get choked up at the point when I share my mom’s last words to me “Kim, you do this... NOT WITHOUT A FIGHT!”.  At this point, my voice quivers and my eyes tear up. Those are enormously powerful words shared from a dying mother to her daughter fighting the very disease killing her. Yes, that was the hardest day of my life, knowing the only person who understood my fears about hep C was now gone, then facing my fate with the only treatment of interferon in 2011 and being pulled off for non-responding. It was a horrible time in my life. I would look at my daughter and son and just pray to God for him to cure me.

Hepatitis C affects so many people

Today, I am cured, and I still stumble sharing my story and stories of those I have met on my hep C journey, especially the stories of those people who have passed before getting a chance to cure or who have cured and lost a battle with liver cancer a year later. These stories are real. They are my life and the lives of people who I care deeply about.

Every chance I get, I share about those I want to remember whose fight was cut short.  I want others to feel the importance of getting tested before it's too late. There is a cure now, and I just wished my friends whose lives were cut short of hep C could have gotten these new cures.

Today, I write this with tears in my eyes and emotion in my heart.... Because our stories MATTER, we all matter. And we all deserve this cure! GET TESTED!

“Not with out a FIGHT!~HCV~” ©

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