I met Emmanuel when he first came out as positive. When he went to the barbershop to cut his hair, the hairdresser refused and told him, “I will lose at least fifteen clients because of you.” I ran into him shortly after that. We lived in the same neighborhood. And I knew how to cut hair. From then on, I became the one to cut his hair. We have become best friends.
Emmanuel was the one to tell me that it was important to get tested. He insisted. Getting tested was a clear decision. Whether I had HIV or not, I was ready. So when I finally found the courage, the test came out positive. I told Emmanuel right away. After that, he took me to a bunch of seminars. These trainings gave me a lot of strength.
When I take photos as part of this project, I see them as stops on a journey. When people are looking at them, they should see a continuation. I feel very proud. I love the colors of my photos, and I will always continue taking photos. When you have HIV, it is not the end of life, but rather a new relationship with society and with yourself as well.