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I could relate to Bradford McKee’s article “Silence = Denial” (11/17). I have been “living” with AIDS since Aug. 15, 1995. I was near death for six months. I got “used to good lab results.” I, too, built a “do-it-yourself infrastructure around the disease,” telling myself that AIDS was over, or at least as far as I was concerned. My story is really a miracle that I have walked through, but the longer I live, the more stories I hear that top mine. Perhaps Sean Strub, founder of Poz magazine, said it best when he wrote in January 1999 that “AIDS survivors have the responsibility to turn their bitter enlightenment into a meaningful movement for the new century.” If AIDS survivors can herald the beginning of a new and extraordinary world, we can celebrate the end of the “ugliest, cruelest, most genocidal century that humankind has ever inflicted on itself.” It is this hope that keeps many of us alive today.

Columbia Heights