A Revelation.

9-24-10
 
How long do I need to keep fighting this? How long can I?
It’s coming up on three years, three straight years of peeling away flesh, fingernails caked with blood – three years of almost getting better and then not. Three years of hope, of trying to figure out why this or that wasn’t working. Back and forth, always ending up with the same result – always ending up with the swelling coming back, the pain, the frustration of not seeming to move forward at all.
 
When it comes down to it, three years out of what… twenty-five, twenty six ago, when I first heard, was first diagnosed… when I got the surprise call at work in Berkeley from a Doctor in San Diego, telling me that I was by all rights dead. The inflection in his voice didn’t hide the gravity of the news well at all.
No one knew enough about it then to be able to promise any hope, so I pushed it away, ignored it, hid it in a place that only I knew of, but I couldn’t keep it from seeping through the cracks of the wall I built so meticulously around it.
If I denied it with enough strength, would it go away? This random call from hundreds of miles away, my parents had asked me if I wanted a general physical when I went to visit them, and had also, completely without my knowledge, scheduled the HIV test. I didn’t have the slightest that I was tested for the virus until I was surprised with the telephone call at work telling me that I had it.
Was it even true to begin with? Could it have somehow been a prank call?
Was it 1985, ’84,’86? Does it matter? Though death was thought of with every cold, every ailment, I decided to live…

 
Three years is nothing. Keep fighting. There’s a reason that I’m still here. Keep fighting.
 
So little said here. I don’t feel like writing. I don’t feel like writing but needed to, needed to talk to someone but there has never been anyone, anything but pen, paper, computer. The only best friend I have ever known or had.  Writing demands nothing from me except the courage to reach as deep as possible and find the purest honesty.
 
I am afraid. My body is decaying. The disease is no longer hiding.
 
It has been a good life, and I am grateful for every moment I have had. For every person I made smile, for all that I have learned and been able to share with others. I am so very thankful that I might have possibly made their lives just a little bit more beautiful… if even just for a moment.
 
So much more to say, but not now. Some things will never be said.
 
~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~ ~
9-24-10
 
I write about this. I write too much about this. Am I to blame? For over half of my life, it has controlled my life. Every love shadowed, every dream coming with the fine print. Sure, you can dream, but don’t dream too far into the future because you’ll probably be dead.
I turned from boy to man with the ever-present haunting of what I knew.

Am I the disease or the man?
This is the new question, the one that has come as a result of the past three years.
I have let it become me, have let it control my life – my actions, relationships, words, thoughts…
 
Am I to blame?
 
Only if I don’t do anything about it, now that I know.
 
It is time for a new fight; a new quest.
 
It is time to become the man.
 
There is still much to say, much to release & let go of. It will be a process, changing into who I am – and saying goodbye to so much of me…
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