This was easily the scariest time of my life, and it was the day I realized just how much power the mind really has. I have had the opportunity to experience so much in my life, from fighting in a cage to seeing and hearing some of the saddest stories to some of the greatest stories. It has been an absolute pleasure to go through so much experience in life, and have the chances to hear other peoples stories as well. So here we go. Maybe I am stalling because this is a very personal story. Yet it is a story that I feel needs to be told, because someone may go through a similar situation and need to read this to make the right decisions for themselves.

I had just graduated ASU and enjoying life. The funny thing is I did not party when I was going to school, because it was important for me to finish school before that. So I decided to party after school, when I was broke and finding a job. I know probably not the smartest way to go about it, but it made sense at the time lol.

There was a club in Phoenix that me and two of my other friends would always go to. Luck for us the drinks were a nickle a drink. Oh yes it definitely saved my wallet, I cannot say the same about my liver though. We would go every Wednesday because that was the day they had the special. It was a blast hang out with the guys and just enjoying life. I have to bring up that we did drink responsibly and we had a D.D. so I was happy we did that.

Anyway I ended up meeting a girl named Mary(protecting her real name) there and we hit it off very well. She had a kind heart and we talked for a couple of hours. I ended up going back to her place and stayed the night. Mary was a joy to talk to and I felt we had a very strong connection. We ended up seeing each other and I was on cloud nine we were not official yet, but I wanted to be. I would say it was love and a dangerous combination of infatuation. We were actually very opposite in many ways too, which made the relationship even more interesting to me.

Then I was hit with one of the worst things a man could hear. Mary told me she had a boyfriend! I was devastated! She said she was sorry and that she was not expecting to develop the feelings that she had for me. A sane person would have walked away from that situation right away, but I didn’t. I was not logically thinking by any means. I asked her so it looks like it is done for us? I didn’t tell her, I really asked her, I wanted it to work out for us some way somehow. She told me that she loved both of us and needed to make a decision and not string us along. So I told her ok, I kept my distance because I did not want to be the other man. I did not want to be known as that person. I wanted to be with her and I wanted her to choose me. That’s what I wanted, normally in that situation my thoughts are on the person she cheated on, but the truth is I only respected him enough not to see her. Yet I still wanted her to choose me.

After a couple of weeks she decided to make a decision. She wanted to be with me. It was a euphoric feeling knowing that. All I could think of was how well I was going to treat her, and let her know she did not make the wrong decision.

I loved hanging out with her and we told each other everything. It was great. One day she told me she used to do glass but she gave it up for me. I honestly had no idea what that was at the time. So she explained it to me. It is the purest form of Meth. I really did not know much about Meth either then all I knew was that it was a drug. So if she was going to give a drug up for me I thought ok that is awesome.

I was very naive then and did not know how strong of a strangle hold that drug could have on my person. I learned a lot about it and the side effects to taking in and I became very worried hoping and believing that she could stay off of it.

One of the hardest things any man can handled happened to me. Her ex came back to town. What she had done to him she was now doing to me.

That was not all either Mary ended up using again and things got very tense very quick. Both these things happened on the same day.

The crazy thing was I still thought we could work through it. Wow being in your early 20s can make you see a fairy tale land. Even typing this I have trouble believing this was me. The biggest thing that helped me through it all was a wise woman named Pam. She really set me straight on why I should stay away from her. I count my blessing to this day, thank you, Pam!

Even though I knew it was right to get away it was hard. I had very strong feelings for her, but I needed to be strong for myself. So I left.

This is were everything took a turn for the worst. A friend told me I should get checked for STD’s and HIV. Oh my god I thought. I was to busy being in the situation of everything I never even thought of that. He also told me that people on that drug can tend to sleep around so that I should know.

My heart sunk hearing that. I was terrified. I had to get tested to know. So I was tested and was negative for all the STD’s. The doctor told me that I was negative for HIV as well, but I had to come back 6 months later to make sure I was still negative. She explained to me that antibodies won’t show anything so they have to check again to make sure.

With the way minds work they can go straight into the negative and very quickly at that too. To make matters worse I knew how deadly HIV can be. I knew a registered nurse who would tell me the most horrific stories of what it would do to people.

I cannot possibly put into words the fear that I had. My mind was racing, I knew I had it I would think. I thought of how unfair everything was. How I did not deserve this, and how I was going to die. I would pray about how I did not want this to be true. I begged and pleaded. Scared and sad, why me why this! I had so many things I wanted to do in my life.

Then it happened a sudden release. The fear was gone, just acceptance. I knew I could only control what I can control. Nothing more and nothing less. I had to accept what my fate was going to be, and live at the moment that I was given. It was truly a peaceful realization. I was ok with whatever outcome there was going to be.

So I took the 6-month test, and it came back negative. I had already felt relief before I took the test though, and I have been feeling that relief ever since. It’s like my brain went through a transformation. It washed away all the fear, so that I could live the life I wanted to live, and experience the things I want to experience. Hopefully someone can read this and if you are going through a tough time get the same relief as I did. Having the opportunity to know what truly living at the moment is all about.

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Comments (10)

  1. Clement


    Great and inspiring post, waking up to read this makes me feel inspired, I wonder how scared you will be going for the test and waiting for the results, Glad that you were able to overcome your fear and fight through this. I also pass through similar situation but not as emotional as yours 

    • Clifford Starks


      Yes it was scary, but I am glad I found my peace. Everything else was just an added bonus. 

  2. Norman


    Hi Clifford,

    Thanks for sharing such a personal and poignant story. We all need a “Pam” in our lives at one time or other, and I am so glad you had yours during such a vulnerable moment in your life. And more importantly, you listened to her and followed her advice. Not a lot of 20 year olds would have behaved as reasonably as you did, although it must have been difficult for you to make that decision at that time. 

    My hats off to you – a potentially devastating turn of events became a life lesson to share.

    Thanks again, and all the best!


    • Clifford Starks


      Thanks Norman, yeah this one was difficult to share because it was so personal, but I felt it was a message that needed to be heard. Appreciate your comment, and yes I am very grateful to Pam!

  3. lesabre


    Hi Clifford, my gosh that was quite the life you lived and looking at your present state is very admirable. You overcame the hurt’s in your twenty’s and became enlightened in your later years.

    I was quite taken up by your story, and yeah I am working on getting muscles like you. I see you have provided a food and exercise guide, plus added your own you tube site with quite a significant amount of subscribers.

    I am not sure how Pam fit in to your life, but it sounds like she was an inspiration to you and that my friend is a precious gift.

    I had my heart broken when I was 24 by a very beautiful woman, crazy thing is she still holds a place in my heart. I ended up hitting the bottle pretty bad, to escape reality. I am sober 22 years now. Just like you my biggest fear was releasing myself, and starting over.

    Your website is well organized and your story is something you have to read to the end. Your topic’s are something I can relate to.

    A great site Clifford and I thank you for the opportunity to read your story. It is all good.

    Thank you,


    • Clifford Starks


      Hello Michael, thank you for your comment. I am glad to hear that you have beaten the alcohol and have been 22 years sober. I am sure your story will also help many find strength in difficult times. Let’s continue to live our greatest lives and leave trials and tribulations for others to look at and learn from. I appreciate you checking out my YouTube channel as well! Stay blessed Michael!

  4. Henry


    Hi! Thank you for sharing this very personal story. And I can imagine all the tension involved while waiting for these 6 months. But things don’t happen accidentally. All that pressure upon you during those months, and the fact that you have been released from your fears must have brought to you a great sense of gratitude. And make each day count from there on.

    And I personally believe you have been granted to live and there is a purpose in all this. Just looking into nature, and this vast creation must make you conclude there is a Creator to whom we must give account for every day that has been granted to us.

    • Clifford Starks


      Thanks for the comment Henry. Yes just gotta appreciate the times and the moments we are give to the fullest! 🙂

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