Penitent, with Roses

Penitent, with Roses : An HIV + Mother Reflects

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Paula Peterson didn’t fit the profile of most persons with HIV. But just eleven months after the birth of her first child, a series of recurring fevers and sinus infections led her to the doctor’s office where she was diagnosed with full-blown AIDS. Penitent, with Roses is the exquisitely crafted account of her journey into the foreign world of HIV; it also includes a loving and autobiographical letter to her son Benjamin that illuminates Peterson as a remarkable woman, wife, mother, and aspiring writer.

Unsure of how she contracted the illness, Peterson undergoes the disorienting process of breaking the news to her husband of four years, searching her past for clues that might pinpoint the fateful encounter, and trying to define herself through circumstances and categories that were previously alien to her. When, miraculously, she learns that her son and husband have not been infected, she begins to rebuild her life–ultimately becoming involved as a volunteer and activist in the HIV+ community and cherishing the joys of motherhood. An affecting, inspiring testament intended to preserve her memory for her son, Penitent, with Roses is a brilliant portrait of a life transfigured by one of the most terrifying illnesses of our time and the work of a uniquely gifted writer whose keen observations we are fortunate to have.
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Product details

  • Paperback | 224 pages
  • United States
  • English
  • Reprint
  • 0767911962
  • 9780767911962