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Tanya's Album
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Tanya Torres' bedroom in Edgewater, Florida is filled with posters of teenage idols, dolls, and animal figurines. To stick your head inside her world, one would assume Tanya is every bit a normal teenage girl. And she is, with one exception, she acquired HIV through a blood transfusion as a baby.

Tanya and her friend Danny Snyder, 14, look at CD's in Target. Tanya's family was invited to participate in a holiday shopping spree called Angel of Love for sick and underprivileged children in the area. Tanya's $50 voucher was cashed in for real 14k gold diamond earrings. Danny took advantage of the trip to the store to do a little Christmas shopping for his grandmother.

Tanya raises hand about a question on a make-up activity in her first period class. Although Tanya works hard to keep up, she does get behind at moments with her school load due to the absences associated with her illness.

Tanya Torres in her home in Edgewater, Florida. Tanya worries from time to time that normal teenage activities like dating are difficult for someone with HIV due to the ignorance of many of her peers at school. She explained that many of the kids at school say anyone with AIDS or HIV is a slut. "I correct them, mind you, I'm like, 'Excuse me. That isn't true.' Look at me," she added for emphasis, "I got it as a baby."

Tanya and a close friend, Yelhsa Claypoole, 14, rehearse an improvisation scene in Tanya's living room for a drama skit they have to perform the next afternoon at school. Tanya and Yelhsa became friends about two years ago, in the middle of seventh grade.

Tanya walks past her front window.