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Founder of the grassroots organization called SYSTEM. She is explosively impacting the lives of those who need to hear the experiences of people overcoming what is trying to overwhelm them. Miriam says,"The purpose-filled possibilities in life’s situations, circumstances, and diagnoses are endless!" The 54 year old, Wife of twenty years, Mother of three, Grandmother of four, Author, Inspirational Poetess, and Minister of the Gospel of Jesus Christ, wholeheartedly believes that there is Life After any Diagnosis. She declares "people affiliated with SYSTEM will become dynamic and more productive forces in their communities living their best lives!"
Miriam Whitehead is an Activist, Motivational speaker, and Consultant. She promotes “Life After Diagnoses” to those infected and affected with HIV/AIDS and other chronic illnesses and diseases. In 2000, three years after she was married, she found out she was HIV positive. Miriam was appointed as one of the Spokesmodel for the “HIV STOPS WITH ME” campaign for Maryland (2013). Her poster was put on buses and billboards throughout the state of Maryland with the other three Spokes Models. Starting out at Park West Medical Center and then taking the HIV/AIDS Teacher and Instructor course, through the Red Cross, made her more aware and concerned about herself physically and emotionally. She is presently a member of OWEL (Older Women Embracing Life). She is also a member of 2020Leading Women Society. She has attended the National Press Club in Washington D.C. for conferences with Capacity Plus and was an active member of the State of Maryland’s HIV Planning Group (HPG).
Miriam is also a survivor of Domestic Violence. Working with the Director of “Victims in the Sanctuary” organization, Miriam works with her to break the silence and end Domestic Violence in Pulpits and congregations. She can also speak on drug addiction. Her use of crack cocaine caused her to lose custody of her children. She weighed 97lbs when she asked the Lord to deliver her and in faith she just stopped. She lives this quote; "Being an addict is a constant fight but being delivered is constant freedom!"
By implementing an organization called “THE S.Y.S.T.E.M. (Share Your Story To Empower Many)” Miriam seeks to “Induce a pulse in statistically flat-lined mindsets and communities.” Her goal is to empower people with HIV/AIDS and other chronic illnesses and diseases to concentrate on living well while being productive in their communities. Once someone is focused on living rather than dying they turn inside out. They find that the simple process of inspiring others to live is purposeful and captivating. She has spoken at multiple facilities, Banquets, Conferences, Health Fairs, and Churches.
In 2012 this Author had a book signing for her first book “Gifted Words, Poem of Promise and Praise.” She is also the Play Writer of the musical play “Skits of Praise.” She wrote the Lyrics and Music. She has published multiple books “Clear Ramblings of Praise,” “Oil for Life,” ”My Grandma is HIV Positive (a children's book),” and “And I Don’t Surrender To Stigma and Judgments.”This book highlights her victory over numerous debilitating health issues including Arthritis, Osteoporosis, Sarcoidosis, Fibromyalgia, Degenerative disc’s disease, Neuropathy, Attempted suicide, Bipolar disorder, and more.” That particular book was written when Miriam’s marriage became dangerous for her mentally. She has started a new book that does not “candy-coat,” incidents and behaviors that she became an expert at masking in.
Now living single she has found truth, joy, and a peace within herself that she had, in the past, replaced with a great outward appearance! “And I Did Surrender,” is an eye opener to those who have decided to pretend that everything is okay and it is not! Her Spoken Word performances, books and the play have inspired her readers and audiences to move forward and face adversities differently!. Miriam has created curriculums for teen programs and life skills for women and men to thrive! All of the things she does are from the heart, her “inward acts.”
During Miriam’s younger years, traumatic dreams controlled her moods and behaviors. As she became used to them she used those dreams as an excuse for her unusual behaviors. Mutilating insects and animals, in her younger years, was a sure sign of psychotic behavior. Manipulation was a sure sign of emotional stress and the inability to forgive and move on was a loud cry out of hurt and mistrust. It was not
until her teens that the Lord and prayer took away those angry feelings.
Finding out that she was HIV positive caused emotions that she thought were gone to appear again. This time it was in the form of depression and erratic behaviors. It was not bad dreams that caused shingles and manic actions.
Dealing with her reality caused a turnaround of her turmoil. Therapy is a part of her life along with medication. Miriam takes her medication and lets others know that it’s okay to take medicine and be a Mom, Minister, Author, Playwright, and Poet.
My Black Box
Hidden within my black box are complacent stigmas and emotions from the past/darkness. To the left in my black box are schemes and dreams dangling beneath my means of comprehension/ignorance.
In the middle of the bottom in my black box are silent screams and the loud sounds of my self-esteem waiting to exist/kidnapped. On the top of the inside of my black box are compromises without boundaries of trust accompanied by insurmountable calamity/confusion.
On the sides inside of my black box are memories of hurt from past loves and loved ones who did not display a care while destroying the hinges on my black box/damaged.
On the outside of my black box are the agonies of self-induced trauma to avoid the significant and delicate horrors portrayed in the tiny details of my black box/suffering.
The rough edges and the splintered corners of rejection, catered to the makeup that masked my black box/camouflaged. The encore of discouragement, the onset of hopelessness and the painted scenery of neglect shellacs my black box/abandonment.
This black box is tired of cowering/exhausted. This black box is cold and damp/clammy. There is a new dawning of this black box and it’s currently collecting bravery/heroism. This black box is fading because, my eyes are now open and light consumes what closed eyes produced!