I know this isn't a story. I'm cross posting this with my other blogs.
December 1st is also known as World AIDS Day. Whether it be through our behaviour, our friends, loved ones, heroes, even just images from half a world away, we are all affected by this.
I am HIV Negative and I understand that I am lucky.
I have entirely too many friends who are positive, I think of people I used to know in Ottawa and Peterborough and wonder if they're still alive. I hope so. I spent the first 25 years of my life scared shitless that this was going to kill me, especially when I came to the realization that I was gay. It's the second thing my parents thought of when I came out to them (the first thing was whether my brother is as well... he isn't).
I think of a friend down in DC who is bound and determined, despite living with full blown AIDS and KS that he is going to live every day he has to in order to see his grandson graduate from college. He told me that the grimmest jokes come from PWAs themselves. He then told me one:
What's the hardest part about having AIDS? Convincing your mother that you're Haitian.
I spent the afternoon folding papers for the local needle exchange run by the AIDS Committee Of London to do even a small part to help prevent the spread of HIV, Hepatitis and AIDS amongst intravenous drug users. I'll be getting more involved with them in the future and am helping with the sound setup for the vigil tomorrow, 138 Wellington, the Christ Anglican Church there if anyone local to London can make it. I believe it starts at 7PM and goes to 9PM. If there is a vigil close to you, I implore you to go there. If you're not comfortable going to one if it's in a church, well, do what you need to do but take some time and think about it.
And as I tell all of my friends who happen to tell me they're going on a date: Play safely. Please.