Well, even though the H bomb is still hard to think about from time to time…I have definitely figured out that I can’t let it get me down and in the dumps. I contracted herpes from a tall, strapping man. He was a co-worker and that should have been my red light, but it wasn’t. I really like the way that he made me feel and the sweet nothings that he would always seem to whisper in my ear. I pretty much knew he was a player and I just never thought that herpes could happen to me. I was young, dumb, and having fun. I knew people with herpes, but I never really though about it.In 2010, I was 23 when I got the news. I was in the deepest of denial and then regret, and then denial again. I looked at my vagina 2 days after the diagnosis and it was all white. I knew then that it was real. Talk about hurt. I automatically thought about my daughter’s father and the fact that I would possibly never get oral sex again. The 23 year old mind! SMH… I was terrible.I don’t take my Valtrex anymore. When I got my first bottle I took it like clockwork and then I was in denial again… I thought, “If I take these pills, then that means that I accept it.” I didn’t want to accept it. I still don’t sometimes. I feel like I don’t have it. When I meet a guy, that is when I remember that I may have to tell him about my conditon.I wanted to be with my daughter’s father ultimately, but we had gone down our own paths. When my daughter was born we weren’t patient with one another and we found quick love or lust in other people. I still miss him, but I understand that some people may not want to take this risk. We continue to co-parent well and that is good for now. I have learned that STDs have a crazy stigma to them and I wish people would be a bit more accepting. I have learned that herpes isn’t the end of the world, even though it definitely feels like it. I have learned that I can live a normal life. I have learned that outbreaks aren’t a daily occurence. I had that initial ob and that was the craziest one. I have had a minor one, but nothing like the first. They don’t happen often at all.I would tell a newly diagnosed woman that it will be fine. Joining support groups and getting deeper into my faith (Team Jesus) got me through my herpes diagnosis. It is going to be hard, but this will definitely make you stronger. Don’t be discouraged. It is hard to say that at first, but once you rewind to the diagnosed date…you will see how much better life is and it isn’t over. You still have life and that is what matters!Currently, I feel like half and half. I wish I had made better choices, but God has a way of making us relax and sit down when we are moving way too fast… It could have been HIV or Hep C. I always think about that. I am a better person because of it. I treat people better and I respect people who want to learn more about it. I have made it my business to know all about it. I just take it day by day.