Denton, TX | Michael's Journey | Health Services of North Texas

Michael shares his story of being HIV positive, addicted to drugs and dealing with health and mental issues; he finally found the medical support he needed with Health Services of North Texas. With the help of the staff, Michael was able to get clean, find a job and help others with their sobriety. He is thankful for HSNT for helping him get his life back. Thank you Michael for letting us be a part of your life and for sharing your story with us.

Transcription

Michael: I was referred to the Nelson-Tebedo Clinic, and then they gave me a list of all the different places that would have resources for HIV-positive people. I chose to check this place out.

Michael: There are lots of different aspects of being positive that your life changes in ways that you can't really predict. HSNT has fused a lot of those elements together for me. I am also a crystal meth addict and a positive and I'm gay, and so I had a lot of health issues, I had a lot of mental issues that I was dealing with too, also not very employable in a lot of ways. Having one hub that was able to address my mental issues, that was able to address my physical issues, that was able to direct me towards support for addiction and my basic medical care, which is something that I neglected for a long time, my dental care, vision, and then also my financial issues that I was having, all in one place that I could feel safe and that I wasn't judged and that I could just have help when I needed it. I mean, that's got to be my most favorite thing about it, it's a one-stop for support in all areas of life.

Michael: Julie, on the financial side of things, helped me figure out how to pay bills and when I couldn't pay them, helped me navigate how that I could take care of some of these things and take some of that load off of myself, and learning how to file taxes, get back into the working side of things and when I needed to actually have insurance. Starting on that path to recovery and then working with Mary, and actually then being honest about myself and about my recovery and about what I needed to do to get sober. She really, really walked me down that path of finding my own mind and finding sanity and finding myself.

Michael: To all the staff here, I can't say thank you enough for how many times you've saved my life. Just how much they even care at the front desk, they are able to smile and lift me up and make me believe that there might be hope. Those smiles and that hard work, when I couldn't even work on myself when other people were willing to still work with me, it's invaluable, it's priceless. It's something that brought me to tears, when I'm not the most emotional person at times, just knowing that I had someplace that cared and that was willing to stitch me back together, time and again, until finally, it was able to stick.

Michael:
All the work that you put in, it does pay off. I mean, I'm a person that went from the dregs of society to now I have my own house and a job where I'm the director for an aftercare program at a treatment center where I get to help other addicts recover like I was helped. I just try to pay back what I got from this establishment every day because I can never pay you back for all the gifts that I now have. So thank you so very much.