Living with AIDS
Kim Hunt plans to live a long life, be a happy mom and enjoy her child. And she plans to do all this while dealing with AIDS.
Hunt was married in 1996 to a 44-year-old man who had been married twice before.
“I guess you could say he had been a wild child for much of his adult life, but had gotten sober in his sexuality a few years before we got married,” said Hunt.
However, that promiscuity, which included both homosexual and heterosexual sex, would affect him for the next 10 years, and his wife for the rest of her life.
“We didn’t take seriously the thought we should get tested for HIV before our marriage,” Hunt said. “I would strongly advise anyone who has had any sexual activity to get tested for HIV before getting married.”
A year after the marriage, Hunt’s husband started getting pneumonia, which would go away, then return again. He was eventually hospitalized and diagnosed with AIDS in June 1997. Hunt was tested and also diagnosed with AIDS.
However, Hunt’s medication worked for her, where her husband’s did not.
“He started taking medication on a different regimen from mine,” she said. “The side effects were rough on him, so he decided not to take the medication, and one of two things would happen: the Lord would heal him or he would die.”
His health started to deteriorate in 2000, and he died in August of 2001, just a year after the birth of their son, Tristin.
Hunt said they made a choice to get pregnant, doing a lot of research on what the possibilities might be.
“I discovered if my health was good, which it was, and I had an undetectable viral load and continued to take medication, chances were we would have a healthy baby,” she said. The planning and precautions we took knocked the percentage of our baby being born with the HIV virus from 25 percent to 1-2 percent. We felt the Lord was leading us to have a child and His blessing would be on it no matter what happened.”
Tristan, delivered by C-section, was healthy with no trace of the HIV virus.
Hunt, whose prognosis is excellent as long as she continues her medication, is a women’s minister at First Stone, meeting with women one-on one for individual discipleship.
She said First Stone, whose primary purpose is to lead the sexually and relationally broken into a liberating relationship with Jesus Christ as Savior and Lord, is there to help people who have AIDS, but because it is a Bible-centered organization which believes homosexuality is against the Lord’s will, it seems less inviting to people who may not have those convictions.
Hunt, who has recently been approved to be a Habitat for Humanity home owner, is a member of Bridgeway Church, a non-denominational congregation.
She said there are lots of people who can live well with AIDS or HIV.
“If they take their medication, and it works well, they can live a long life,” she said.