My friend Mitchell is asleep behind me on the couch. He is exhausted . About that there is no doubt. Having to have been friend, protector ,nurse, and councilor for these past two weeks has definitely taken it’s toll on him… poor guy.
He has had to endure 3 trips to the ER in one week and me reeling from pain, loss of oxygen ,and way to much medication. I have cried ,laughed and fought violently all in the same minute as I waged a personal battle within myself, that he unfortunately was caught in the middle of.
I really thought that I was going to die at one point though I would never admit that to him or anyone else for that matter. I became to frightened ,to out of control, there was to much pain, as I seized over and over again. Then with all that i had I asked for my friend and priest to come to me. And god love him he didn’t hesitate. He did not come there to hear my last confession I was to angry at god for that anyway. Inside I was screaming and fighting with all that I had. Wanting to know why this? Why now? I wanted it to end. I silently begged for my friend to leave me so that I could freely bang my head against the hard wooden pew and end it all. Yes at that moment death by pew didn’t sound to bad at all.
As I have said before I remember very little of what happened in those two weeks, and I am thankful for that in many ways. I do remember a kind touch, a bit of humor (which there always was), a word, a release, strength and weakness, friendship, and quiet understanding that only happens between two people when there are no words that need be said. These are the things that I remember. Or more less the things that I choose to remember. I choose not to remember the ignorance and stupidity that I so often hear, and feel. That serves no good to anyone. I chose not to remember the conversations of “I wonder how she got it”. why does that matter? Does it make it less or more depending on the method of contraction? Who cares and why does it even matter?
Sometimes I think that the look of disgust is better then the looks of pity. The “ oh you poor thing” look. It infuriates me. I do not suffer from this illness I wear it like a badge of courage. I wrap it around me to remind me of all the ones that have gone before that allow me to be able to say without fear or hesitation “ I have AIDS”. I am just a mere shadow in their prescience. And I try to do them honor everyday by not allowing myself be ashamed of who I am, and what I have.
It is important for me to never be afraid or ashamed of my life. It is important for me to show my son how to be unashamed and unafraid of this illness. For me to live as I do and to show him as I am dieing how to live. He has such a long journey ahead of himself. Maybe in his lifetime they will find the one thing that so many of us have dreamed of for so long …. A cure…. I can only hope and pray for that day. As we all do.