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Feature: Living with AIDS


19:52, November 30, 2011

KUNMING, Nov. 30 (Xinhua) -- Wearing high heels and black leggings, 39-year-old Zhang Lin looks just as composed and classy as any other working woman in the city of Ruili in southwest China's Yunnan province.

But just seven years ago, Zhang was wracked by depression and anger, unable even to leave her own home.

"For months, I couldn't get out of bed. I felt that my world had collapsed and that there was nothing to live for. I wanted to die," she said.

Zhang's husband died from AIDS in 2004, leaving her with an HIV infection and a 4-year-old son to care for on her own. Zhang's emotions ran from anger to denial in the first few months after she found out she had the disease.

"My late husband became very sick in September 2003 and was diagnosed with HIV/AIDS. I was tested HIV-positive at the same time," she said.

"I couldn't believe that I was ill. I didn't do anything wrong," she said.

When her husband died in 2004, the reality of her condition began to kick in and Zhang began to receive anti-retroviral therapy (ART) in September that year, becoming the second HIV carrier in Ruili to receive the treatment.

After receiving the ART treatment and attending lectures on HIV/AIDS sponsored by AIDS Care China (ACC), a non-governmental organization aimed at supporting people with HIV/AIDS, Zhang gradually came to peace with the disease and began to face it positively.

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