ADRIENNE'S HIV BLOG – Hivine's Weblog

HIVINE is written by HIV positive women but still with a sense of humour

Archive for March 22, 2009

Mamma Mia

 mothers-day-last-smaller-still1            picture:voyageofmotherhood©adrienneseed


Happy Mother’s day to all positive mammas and also to all mammas who may be feeling decidedly less positive about their own decision to have offspring and wishing they’d never bothered – as well as all the lucky mothers, as they say in America, of course who are fortunate enough to take a great delight in their children.


In the huge furore caused by one particular mother Julie Myerson and her widely criticised decision to write about her son in her book ‘The Lost Child’, everyone is talking about the violation of her son’s human rights. But what about a mother’s human rights; a mother who was being mentally and physically abused by her son in her own home as a result of his drug taking. In cases of domestic violence is it right to protect the rights of the instigator or should that person’s human rights be protected by the victim keeping quiet? Most women would say not – but there are many instances where women feel too frightened to speak out either through fear of reprisals or some sort of womanly or motherly inbuilt guilt. I defend any woman’s right to speak out about any kind of human injustice either to herself or to any living being as well as the right of any woman living with HIV to be able to live a life free of prejudice and stigma. Unless people have had personal experience of either having their lives destroyed by HIV or a child whose life has been or is being destroyed by drugs, they shouldn’t be so quick to condemn and make judgements.


“Mamma mia, here we go again,” is phrase often uttered by parents living with the psychotic behaviour of their offspring caused by taking any drug including the smoking of cannabis and skunk. That child whether nineteen or twenty nine will sell their soul and their parents down the river to buy drugs, whether it be a few grams of heroin or cannabis. It’s a never ending story that has affected Julie Myerson’s life and the lives of her family, so why shouldn’t she tell it?


On a lighter note, but still on the subject of mamas, grams and Abba songs, I went   for my first mammogram the other day  – I know……. a woman of my age, I should have been going for regular checkups, but I was too busy dealing with other health related issues, HIV for example and there are only so many things a body can cope with at the same time, especially this body. Anyway, I’d heard all kinds of gruesome stories about how painful the procedure was and I don’t tend do pain, well at least, not if I can help it


The directions on my invitation for breast screening said I had to make my way to a caravan which would be parked opposite KFC. Luckily they added on the old hospital car park, otherwise I might have swanned off to a caravan site in Blackpool.

I nervously mounted the rickety caravan steps and took my place with the other women seated in a line on the brown corduroy covered banquette, which in the caravan’s pre breast screening days had probably doubled up as a bed. It was quite cosy in the caravan and reminded me of rain soaked childhood holidays in windy bays. As none of the other women felt inclined to speak or even make eye contact I was forced to stare at the wallpaper and coordinating flowered curtains whilst trying to avoid listening to the piped music. My wavery nerves were not helped by the fact that the floor of the caravan was constantly moving and I can’t be doing with unstable ground these days thanks to vertigo caused by the meds. But at least it reminded me not to buy one which I’ve been considering of late – must be my age. My cousin of Viv Lives fame is whizzing round NZ as we speak in a caravan, well a camper van actually. If she is reading this now I loved the vision of you canoeing down the rapids like mini ha ha and felt quite envious, although I would rather be in a mini cooper myself.


However, I wasn’t in a canoe or a mini cooper I was stuck in a static caravan opposite KFC and about to have my bosoms manhandled by a bossy Scottish nurse. One by one the other women were led off to cubicles, only to remerge later with pained expressions and a curt goodbye to the receptionist and I was left on my own listening to Abba on the piped music.

A new woman mounted the steps and tentatively sat on the brown banquette.

“It’s my first one,” she addressed me crossing herself.

“Me too,” I did a mental crossing with my eyes, but as new woman was a bit cross eyed, I hoped she didn’t think I was mimicking her

‘Dancing Queen’ was now blasting out of the speakers and new woman began silently mouthing the words to music.

“Should be mamma mia,” I joked but it didn’t seem to register.

 “Ready for you now Miss Seed,” bossy Scottish nurse barks, “Take off your top and your bra and wait in the cubicle.”

It’s a long time since my bosoms have hung free or even been exposed to daylight for that matter. Hoped bossy Scottish nurse wouldn’t notice Kivexa rash. Would she know from notes that I was positive?

“Pop your right bosom on this plate dear. Now walk your feet backwards.”

Bosom was efficiently rearranged, “Now I’ll just lower this and tighten the plate a wee bit.”

Hell’s teeth.

“Ok, that one’s done.”

“Only one left to do now,” I joked.

“No dear, there’s another two.”

Wasn’t aware that I’d grown extra bosoms, but then again it wouldn’t surprise me with these bloody meds and the dreaded lippo.


Well, at least that’s over, now all I have to do is wait for the results. I may be imagining it but after all that squashing I’m sure my bosoms are marginally smaller – a bit like deflated balloons – and I’ll never be able to look at a KFC or listen to Abba again, especially ‘chiquitita’ or chicken tikka as French and Saunders rewrote the lyrics in their version of mamma mia for red nose day, without being reminded of the whole painful procedure. Oh well, the things us women or mammas have to go through.