Kalvin and Eunice's Story
Our story begins at Booker. T. Washington high school in Houston, Texas where Eunice and I met and became casual friends. Since we were in different graduating classes - me c/o 74 and Eunice c/o 75 - we had lost contact when our high school years ended. We both encountered failed marriages in the years to follow and had no contact with each other until 1978 when we were reintroduced by a mutual acquaintance. We talked and eventually started dating. In 1984 we got married and this began a journey of tragic twist and turns we are still living to this day. Since we both were seeing other people before we got serious, we now know one or more of those encounters lead us to our current HIV status. After we married, we both started experiencing health issues. Eunice had reoccurring yeast infections and I had a very bad rash I could not seem to get rid of. Fast forward to 2004-2006. I began to lose a lot of weight and had a light stroke. My job performance quickly diminished and my employer fired me and prevented me from getting work. Depression set in and I had yet another stroke. I started losing control of my bodily functions and so we sought out help to determine what was happening to me. After a run to the ER and several doctors’ visits (from September - December 2006), in Jan 2007 the decision was made to hospitalize me. Two blood transfusions later and after being diagnosed with dementia and stage four kidney failure, I was given an AIDS diagnosis. I immediately had a heart attack. In March 2007, Eunice was tested for HIV while I was still hospitalized and she was given her HIV diagnosis in April 2007. After I was given rehab to learn to walk, we went home and decided to fight for our lives and to honor our wedding vows to stay together. We decided that no matter what else happens to us, we would be there for each other. We noticed that most couples who were diagnosed with HIV/AIDS split up. After becoming educated about this virus, we both made a commitment to share our story so people would really understand that this can happen to them just like it happened to us. We wanted to show people that even with one or both people in a relationship having HIV/AIDS there is life for a couple. December 21, 2013 will be our 30th anniversary. It has not been easy but we are still together.