Wednesday, December 7, 2011

IT’S TUESDAY RIGHT? OR IS IT WEDNESDAY?


Being stuck in a rut is like waiting in purgatory, as we mortals understand the idea of purgatory. 

This has been one roller coaster of a year for me.  I started it off by working two jobs to pay off the medical bills while creating a nice cushion of savings for myself for a rainy day.  Finally, I was able to leave one job and take care of health and move ahead.  That was until the government took my savings from me as a result of our system’s inability to manage their own check books and wreaking havoc on the middle class (what’s left of it.)  It was at that point I lost most of my faith in our legislative system until I took a shot at a job in our nation’s capital concerning HIV politics.  It was my hope that I could make a difference.  However, I felt like nothing more than a Muppet striving for my stardom in Hollywood.


I left DC and returned to New York desperate for work and ignoring snarky, “I told ya so,” comments from people jealous that I take a chance on venues rather than just talk about them.  I’m a person that seizes an opportunity not expecting a handout in life.

Then, over the summer I found a job that I thoroughly enjoyed.  My coworkers were a pleasure and my duties were fulfilling.  However, I knew it was too good to be true.  The company ran low on funds and as a temporary employee it was evident that I’d be the first to go, regardless of my ability to do the job well.


So, I’m back in Florida.  The only thing left for me is to finish what I started years ago- going into the much needed health care profession.  Florida isn’t exactly where I planned to be by year’s end (or at all) but, what harm can two years do?  As long as I graduate as planned I will become a Registered Respiratory Therapist.  This of course is if I can receive financial aid and be able to start in January.  Then the idea is to move to Los Angeles and practice there.  I never thought I’d be waiting tables again at a job with no benefits, but here I am.  The positive side is that I have a beautiful view of the Intracoastal Waterway.   If this doesn’t work, what will I do?  Not New York.  Not again.



The lack of stability in my life is deafening.    

My rut is so dreadful and depressing that I don’t even know what day it is today.  Twenty years ago I’d be counting down the days to my happy Christmases.  Now, Christmas is painfully approaching and I could really care less about the holiday.  I won’t have a tree, I won’t be buying gifts, I won’t be watching the specials on television.  I wish it would pass at lightning speed.

2012 would be a blessing, right?  I can try again in a new life knowing what I know, now.  This time I’ll be a doctor, like I should have been.


Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Dear God, How’ve you been?

Dear God,

How’ve you been?  I must iterate my apologies for not writing to you sooner.  However, due to the constant upheavals in my life (of which I hold you largely responsible) you must understand my reasons for not getting back to you sooner.  But, don’t worry, all is forgiven, darling.  It would be in terrible Christian manners for me not to forgive, don’t you agree?

Well, I’m sure you’ve been keeping up with everything that’s been happening from my end.  I must say it wouldn’t have killed you to check in with me from time to time.  As the universe creator and the all knowing ambassador of life, your advice on matters that sought a second look would’ve been encouraged.  For instance, where were you when I was eight years old and my grandmother passed away?  While you were transitioning her into new accommodations (which by the way better be first class considering she deserves it) my entire family tree fell apart.  In the while, the adults of the world thought it was okay to pick on me, the quiet kid, by saying how bad I was at everything.  Perhaps it was the quiet side of me that made me inept to sports and scholastics, allotting my free time to do, ya know, nothing. It’s not like I asked for anything, yet I was still labeled a spoiled brat.  Is it because the one thing I ever asked for was a swing and never got it?  Should I have made a fuss do you think?  I must say your absence taught me to live alone in a bubble from an early age.  I was comforted by shutting everyone out and changing my excessive smiles to pursed lips.  Can you believe that is still the same attitude I have with most people these days?  That point made me chuckle for a moment and I almost spilled my Perfect Manhattan that I’m drinking as I write this.  But, like I said, all is forgiven. 

Anyways, where was I?  Oh yes, your abandonment.  Sorry to sound like your mother, I’m sure.  I thought my childhood and adolescent years would be the worst of it all.  Well, was I wrong!  Maybe I’ll let you be the judge.

Darling, did you hear I became a homosexual?  Or, as the less educated population calls it, “a faggot?”  Boy, what an experience it’s been!  Thank goodness you approve and love homosexuals because people here sure don’t, especially the people who think they know how to interpret the Bible.  Can you believe they won’t let us marry?  What terrible manners.  I bet you didn’t see that coming when you created HIV.  Did you think when the first reported cases that were directed towards gay men that the world as we know it would sympathize?  Which reminds me, give my best to the millions of men and women who are no longer here because of HIV, including my Uncle George.

I shouldn’t be so dramatic about everything because I did let HIV in my bubble.  No doubt you heard that we’re involved?  I bet you heard the news through the grapevine that I’m with HIV?  Don’t worry; nothing to get bent out of shape over.  HIV and I grew a lasting relationship over the past year and a half:  I know where to find him if I need him and he leaves me alone, for now.  We check in with each other about every three or so months, which is more than I can say of you, but I digress.  Meanwhile, most of the homosexual community won’t talk to me because I’m with HIV.  Whodathunkit? 

Thank goodness you couldn’t be here in the days I hated being gay in a world that hates me for being gay.  I had a fabulous time with the gentleman (which one it was strikes my memory at the moment) that inserted his tainted sperm in me.  If not for him I would have never met HIV.  It’s dashing, really.  He opened up my circle of friends.  In fact, I see my best friends, Atripla and Isentress at least twice a day, now.  They have quite expensive tastes and eat me out of house and home, but I don't have the heart to say no to them.  They send their love and gratitude for introducing us. 

Sometimes I wonder if you hate me, but I’m just talking crazy. Right?  I’d say “LOL” to you, but it would appear you’ve been missing from the world for so long that you’d have no idea what that means?  Oh, you old fogy!  Or should I assume that you possibly have kept up with the times after all and just abandoned me? 

But, let me be serious for a moment and confess something to you, darling.  I do have regrets and abandonment issues of my own.  Since I’ve met HIV I’ve recently abandoned all the selfless men and women fighting to stop the spread of HIV.  Yes, HIV is cheating on me with millions of people out there, but I let it happen.  I, too, have been so focused on me that I forgot how important each and every one of them is to me.  I just hope they know.  Any advice for me considering you’re well versed in abandoning those in need? 

Well I should wrap this rampant letter up, darling.  I could only imagine all the other depressed and lonely people you need to attend to (or ignore) these days.  I’d end with saying, “looking forward to your reply letter,” but I know how terribly busy you are being God and all.  So until next time we coerce I’ll be holding down the fort on this cruel and unforgiving world you tossed me on.

Hugs and kisses,

Christopher 

Tuesday, April 12, 2011

WHAT WOULD SHE THINK?

First of all I’d like to make one thing quite clear so there is no confusion.  This blog by no means questions who my mother and father is.  My parents are the two people who adopted me in 1983 and raised me till I was old enough to venture out on my own.  They are and will forever be my parents.  Our family is very blessed because my parents were able to adopt three children when they were unable to have children of their own, while three Colombian babies were privileged to all the amenities of the American suburban lifestyle- amenities I could only imagine would have been just a dream in South America at the time.  

Since I was young and old enough to understand what adoption meant I couldn’t help but wonder who my birth parents were.  As I got older and I enhanced my questioning abilities I started pondering the “why” questions instead of just “who’s.”  Why was I given up for adoption was the ultimate question.  In fact, it is still something I hit my head on every now and again.  It was assumed that due to the nature and poverty of the country my mother could not support me.  And it was left at that until recent years when I began to think this may have been a way to protect me from some evil truth; a truth that even my adopted parents aren’t aware of. 

People in the past have criticized me for having such thoughts and how sensitive the subject must be for my adopted parents.  While I sympathize on their beliefs, I refuse to have my feelings dismissed.  Has it ever occurred to anyone that I have no idea who brought me into this world?  It’s like the story of a stork that dropped infant me on my parents stoop one day.  In this case the stork was a commercial jetliner.  Not knowing who actually birthed me is a tremendous void that I wish I could move on from, but I just can’t.  I don’t know what it’s like to have a biological connection to another human being and I fear I may never know.

 The only information I have is that I was born Alberto Martinez Ferrucho (allegedly named by the foster home I came from) and the woman who birthed me was Gloria Ferrucho.  I had three older siblings.  That’s it.

That’s it?  I have many other things I want to know.  Were my siblings adopted?  What is my health history?  Where do I get my features from?  Is Gloria still alive?  Am I allowed to find her?  Was I an “oops” baby?  Oh, by the way, I was a bastard child.  I know I’m going to Hell for thinking of the possibility that perhaps my birth mother could have been a word that rhymes with “chore.”

But I’ve been obsessed lately on what she would think of her little boy now if she knew of things that were going on in my life.  For instance, I know Colombia is predominantly a Catholic territory.  Would she forsake me for being gay?  Or worse, forsake me for being HIV positive?  Would she be the type that thinks I deserve to get AIDS because I’m gay?  Not that I am looking for any type of love from her, but I want to know if she has any regrets for letting me go?  As a mother would she beat herself up for not being there for me?  Or would she not care at all? 

Should the day ever come that I meet this woman the only thing I could tell her is that she has nothing to be upset about.  Because of her, I was raised by the two most beautiful people in the world- my mother and father of Long Island, New York.  I have a college education and a brother and a sister (who are also from Colombia.)  As far as my health is concerned, I’d tell her that I am in the hands of some of the best doctors and I am healthy as a horse projected to live a normal life span.

Perhaps in my head this is just a way for me to see if she would have any connection to the boy she gave up for adoption- or if there is this stranger out there who thinks about me from time to time.  It’s a closure that I’ll probably never receive.  “Is it important?” people ask me.  Yes, for me it is. 
   

Wednesday, March 30, 2011

ADAP CRISIS & PARTISAN BICKERING

Please read my latest blog here.  http://adapadvocacyassociation.blogspot.com/2011/03/adap-crisis-lawmakers-stop-bickering.html  It covers the ADAP Crisis and the harshness of partisan bickering.  I wrote this for the ADAP Advocacy Association (aaa+).

Monday, March 21, 2011

CALENDAR DATES: OBSESSIVE OR ALTRUISTIC?

One year ago this upcoming weekend I began my HIV medications.  I remember that night perfectly- from strategically planning the hour at which I would consume the pills to who I invited over my apartment to join in on an occasion I insisted be festive.  After my friends forced the pills down my throat and then headed back to their residences the idea of remaining in a celebratory state had subsided. I had a bit of quiet time to fill my “Monday through Sunday” pill box.  While doing so I listened to sappy music and cried every possible tear I could.  It wasn’t until this part of the evening did this physical illustration remind me that now that I started the medications I can never stop and that this pill box will always be replenished.  To this day this incident was the third and final time I allowed myself to be emotional at the fact that I’m HIV positive.

One common trait I’ve learned that majority of positive individuals have are remembering dates: the month, day and year of their diagnosis, when they began medication, when and if they were hospitalized, etc.  I see people on both ends of the spectrum criticize these people for being what they in their own minds would consider anal about keeping track of dates.  Such individuals tell me that as time goes on I will forget my exact dates.  That may be all right for them, but as far as I’m concerned my life began on January 21, 2010, a date that will live in my memory until God has decided that my time is up. 

My argument for remembering dates is that it recognizes taking charge of your life.  Before I had HIV, I could care less about myself.  Whether it would be reviewing my resume for dates when I held jobs, or dates from my last dental appointment, or even the date of the last time I had sex.  Sure, I may have a rough idea, but there is uncertainty.  Since my life has changed I’ve become certain of almost everything regarding my health side of things.  (Another reason why I can’t stand when people tell me my life hasn’t changed with or without HIV.  Change doesn’t necessarily equate to BAD.)

Here’s an example of why remembering dates is not only crucial to one’s internal self, but for others engaged in your life as well.  Look out- I’m going to be honest about how it works for many in the gay world.  And in my opinion, unless our world finally accepts the homosexual community as equals more and more individuals will seek affection the way I’m about to portray.  Several years ago, I met a gentleman on one of the many gay dating (sex) sites.  After a few dialogue sessions exchanging what we were “into” (meaning sexual position, safe or raw, relationship oriented or no strings attached, discreet or open, to name a few) we’ve concluded that we were a match.  One night in his hotel room (he’s from a major city two hours away from mine) we made love for a couple hours before calling it a night.  This escapade continued on and off a few times a year, when he was in town, and we were officially “buddies”- no need to add the F word before buddies. 

What began in my early twenties as an acquaintance relationship sooner turned intimate (he invited me to dinner after all these years of just having sex.) we learned that we can glamorize things and be considered friends.  Recently, he got in touch with me that he will be in town and I was the first person he wanted to see upon his arrival.  As flattered as I was, I knew I had to be honest with an old buddy.  After all, he has and deserves the right to know the truth.  Sure it will hurt if he rejects me, but that’s life.  It doesn’t mean there aren’t plenty of other guys out there I’ve yet to encounter that will care for me as me.  I told him I was positive.  I told him the date I was diagnosed, the date I started medications, my current numbers and my healthy stature, etc.  I pleaded all I could to assure him that I would never do anything to hurt him, yet I understand if our debauchery had to end.  His response, “the fact that you were so honest with me, know all your shit, like dates and all, makes me not only comfortable with you, but admire you for being educated and taking charge of your life.”  Here I was worried he’d reject me for being positive.  Now we speak on a daily basis and I teach him a thing or two about the illness that he can use at will to protect him from harm.  I laughed when he apologized for asking so many questions regarding STDs.  My response was, “Don’t ever apologize for taking charge of your health or let anyone put you down for doing so!”

My point in a nutshell, keeping track of dates and knowing your own facts, whether you are negative or positive, illustrates taking charge of one’s own life.  So, to all the critics out there who tease us for knowing ours I say, “Get over it.”  By the way, I have plans to meet up with that gentleman friend of mine very soon and I have a feeling it will be the most passionate meeting we’ve ever had.  I guess honesty really is the best policy.          

Monday, January 31, 2011

CHRISTOPHER’S, “STATE OF THE HIV WORLD” ADDRESS

To people living with HIV and AIDS, to the tireless advocates and activists globally, to politicians, case managers, medical providers, drug companies, my fellow Americans.  If I may have your attention…

Most of you may not know me, but someday soon you will.  I’m saying it loudly that my name is Christopher Myron. Last week honored my one year anniversary living with HIV.  One year ago my misinformation of HIV allowed my world to fall apart.  My diagnosis forced me to be an outcast to society.  But, here I am one year later and although in that short period of time I consider myself to be in an emotionally stable frame of mind, there still isn’t a day that I don’t fear for my life.  This fear isn’t from the possibility of passing on from this illness that consumes me.  The fear stems from the views and opinions and tactics us as human beings should otherwise forbid with something as severe as HIV.  The bigotry is what’s keeping HIV alive and every one of us on every level is to blame.

This past weekend I had the privilege to attend the 2011 Emergency ADAP Summit in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, hosted by the ADAP Advocacy Association.  The forum included representatives nationwide from drug companies, nonprofit HIV/ AIDS organizations, case managers, and everyday citizens.  I’m not here to discuss the specifics of the conference, but I will tell you what I got out of it on a personal note.  As a former resident of the sunshine state, and perhaps down the road I will be again, I wanted to attend to see what someone in my shoes can do to help the thousands of Americans on “waitlists” with no access to their medications.  Not to mention I will soon be the newest enroller in the ADAP program in my state.  The good news is that I live in a state that hasn’t yet run out of funding for the government assistance program.  The bad news is that I had a price to pay to get said funding.      

Let’s back track for a moment.  I’m an example of an under-insured individual.  As if stress and mishap of dealing with an HIV diagnosis alone wasn’t enough, I still have so many other things to consider.  Being HIV positive is a financial burden.  I work two jobs just to survive.  The only insurance I was able to obtain in a sickening economy is through a union position at a job where I am abused.  I deal with it because it is my only source of receiving my medications that keep me alive.  Just to see my specialist and receive my quarterly blood tests I have to attend of a number of unnecessary doctor appointments so I may obtain a referral.  I can overlook this absurdity if I didn’t have to pay for all these treatments out of my own pocket, simply because I disqualify for ADAP in my state by a mere $500.

Being HIV positive I’m prone to fatigue.  Working two jobs results in eating less, lack of a good night’s rest, or exercise the way my body should- all these factors that are imperative for an HIV positive person need to remain in good spirits with to stay healthy.  The only solution to these problems is to leave my job with the limited insurance and give up being a responsible citizen in order to qualify for ADAP.  In turn, I’m forced to give up my home and move back in with my aging parents so I can save a few dollars.  Not only are my dreams and freedoms being slowly taken from me, but now I am risking the chance of being “waitlisted” in my state if they succumb to the same fate as Florida and many other states.  HIV is not easy for anyone to deal with.  Yet, I don’t think it’s fair for it to be an ongoing punishment.  These are a few examples of why I knew early on that I need to do what I can to help the generations to come to make their lives just a bit easier.    

As I sat in the forum and I listened to the arguments and the “agree to disagree” remarks I remain in silence and my opinions prevail.  I’m worrisome that we as a community cannot remain to the crisis at hand- that people have no access to the care they need to survive.  All I heard from numerous individuals from all points on the spectrum is a sense of entitlement.  I was overwhelmed with numbers and policies and I am confident that the new generation of the HIV community shares my feelings.  It wasn’t until the final minutes of the conference was I able to get a word in edge wise so I can make myself heard.  I didn’t get to say exactly what I wanted to say, but now that I have the time to express it here, this is what I needed to say:

I’m not an African American living with HIV.  I’m not a long term survivor of HIV.  I’m not a woman living with HIV.  I’m not employed in the HIV community- yet.  What I am—I AM THE NEW GENERATION OF HIV—who after one short year of being positive is frustrated and tired of doors being closed in my face from doctors, government officials, pharmacies, case workers, and people living with or affected by HIV and AIDS.  Past experience and status quo does not entitle any of us to be more important than the other while HIV is still alive and winning. 

I don’t know habeas corpus, I don’t know pricing policy, and I am fully aware that I wasn’t suffering in the 1980’s when this epidemic was a death sentence.  However, I will be the new generation’s representative to continue the fight against HIV and to hopefully one day live to see the cure.  But, I can’t do it alone.  You can’t do it alone.  I reach out to all individuals I described, especially my peers under the age of thirty, to make your voices heard.  If our voices don’t speak collectively and in large quantities, the White House will not be there to listen.

Once again all I ask is that we lift the sense of entitlement or expressing sympathy for other groups.  As HIV knowingly survives over thirty years we all need to understand that we equally need help.  Younger people like me need leaders and voices to follow in past footsteps.  The past foot steps need to remember in order to create new footsteps you need to let someone like me in.  Our message to the White House is universal and clear.  And that message is this- WE NEED HELP AND WE NEED IT YESTERDAY.      

WE NEED HELP AND WE NEED IT YESTERDAY.

WE NEED HELP AND WE NEED IT YESTERDAY!

To learn more about the ADAP advocacy Association and how you could get involved, visit the website here: http://www.adapadvocacyassociation.org/.      

Tuesday, January 11, 2011

A FIGHT WITH CONSCIOUS

As my one year anniversay being diagnosed with HIV approaches, I reflect on what I've learned.  It takes me back to those dark days when I found out the news and locked myself in my bedroom for weeks at a time.  I had fights with myself.  Below is an example of one of those conversations I had with my conscious.  I plan to publish this conversation in my book I'm working on.  the bold represents my conscience and the underlined text is me.  Enjoy and feel free to leave a comment!

-Christopher, you slut.  Have you no respect for yourself that you let some idiot do this to you? 
-Oh, easy for you to stand there and judge me now, Conscience.  You loved it when that guy was fucking me hard and good.  You didn’t want it to stop, either.
-Yes, I did.  I knew it was wrong.  I tried to tell you.  You were too drunk to notice.
-I refuse to believe that.
-Well, you can’t let me take the fault.
-Yes I can.  You could have told me to stop.  Don’t tell me you did, I would’ve remembered.  Where were you when I needed help? 
-That’s up to you and your friend, Conscious, not me.  You were ignoring me, Christopher.  These guys make you two feel so good about yourself that you pretend like I’m not there.
-Bullshit.
-You know it’s true.  You always side with Conscious over me. 
-I do not!
-Yes, you do.  And contrary to what Conscious will tell you these guys don’t care for you.  They were getting off just like you were.
-Then, why didn’t you stop me?
-I tried, but Conscious didn’t let me have control of the situation.  He’s a ‘Know It All.’  We tend to argue a lot.  That ‘one drink too many’ attitude of yours didn’t help, either.  It only makes me weaker and him and you stronger for doing the wrong thing.  The more you drink the further away you and I are from each other.  That’s out of my control.   How many close calls does it take? 
-Where are you when I drink at home, alone?  You don’t tell me to stop there.
-You never think it’s a problem if you’re doing it at home, alone.  Until you get in a mood and start making phone calls to random guys you know.
-Well, it’s obvious these guys care about me more than you care about me, Conscience.
-Why would you say that?  And where is Conscious now in this situation?  I’m still here.  For that matter where is the guy that infected you?  Why wasn’t he honest with you?  Do you even know which one it was?
-Hey, I wasn’t unsafe with all of them.  But, they wouldn’t want me if I wanted to use protection.
-Then you should have said no.
-Easy for you to say.  Do you expect me to always spend time by myself?  Cause that’s what’ll happen if I reject these guys.
-You know that’s not true.  Plenty of people out there will respect your wishes.  The rest are losers.
-And no, I’m not sure who did this to me.  Are you gonna judge me, again?
-Of course, not.
-Go ahead.  Everyone else does.  You don’t care about me.  You always side with the other guy.  Maybe I should stick with Conscious. 
-That will only do you more harm if you continue in this path. 
-But, Conscious makes me feel good. 
-You think he makes you feel good.  But, look what that good did to you? 
-I have nothing else to lose.
-Yes you do.  By the way, I will always side with you, whether or not you think so.  But I can’t do everything here.  You need to be responsible for your actions, too!  Without you, my powers are useless. 
-Oh shut up! 
-You got yourself in this situation more than once.  You drink too much, and then you have no idea what you’re doing.  Conscious thrives on this because he doesn’t want to get involved in the serious stuff.  He expects me to handle that.  But, I can’t without you.  Sooner or later you had to realize you’re not untouchable.
-So are you all punishing me now? 
-HIV is not a punishment.
-Being on my death bed months ago wasn’t punishment enough for you?
-New flash, we were all there suffering, too.
-Fuck you!  You have no idea what I’ve been going through and how I feel about my life. 
-Yes, I do. I’m your Conscience.  I know everything about you.  From your depression, to your anxiety, to your loneliness.  And I’m still here for you.  And always will be. 
-Oh that’s convenient.  Lucky for you I have HIV and that promise won’t have to last very long.
-That’s not true!  Enough with that talk!  Let’s not fight anymore.  This is all ‘Coulda, Shoulda, Woulda’s’ at this point.  We need to focus on your future and a plan of action. 
-What future?  No one wanted me or cared about me when I was negative and no one is going to want me or care for me now.  Look at me, I’m a loser.  All alone, and now I’m dying. 
-Oh, you’re not dying.  You know you’ll get through this.  You’re not a quitter.
-I’m quitting now.
-No, you’re not.  You never were and never will be.  Just try to understand how to be aware of both Conscious and myself.  You have the power to help us.  And believe me, someone out there will find you and see all you’re worth.
-That may be a possibility.  But, I am not holding my breath.  I appreciate the sentiment, but I just need to be alone for a while. 
-That may be wise.  But, even when you’re alone don’t forget me.  I’ll always be next to you and I’m always going to be your friend.
-I’m sorry I snapped at you.  I just can’t get a grip on this, yet.
-I understand.  And I’m sorry I called you a slut, Christopher.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

NEW YEAR, NEW DECADE, NEW ME



Tis the season for people resolute to changing their lives. Whether this episode includes eating healthier, going to the gym regularly, or being a nicer person the majority will agree that after the first few weeks in January people return to their normal, unfavorable routines. Obviously, it's important for everyone to eat healthy and stay in shape. Being HIV positive, it's even more crucial. 2010 was quite the year for me as it was the year of my diagnosis. In addition to the many challenges I face in the years to come I've decided not to hope for a better lifestyle like others tend to do. That should just come natural. No sir, this year my resolution is to focus on Christopher.


Those that know me know that I have quite a lot on my plate. Unfortunately, recent events that have taken place in my life have forced me to take yet another few steps backwards. God's humor isn't so funny to me anymore. Sometimes, I just want to crawl into bed and cry myself to sleep from being overwhelmed and tired. But, then I remember all my brothers and sisters out there living with HIV that I can count on for support and love. For that reason alone I know I could not live with myself if I gave up this fight and deserted them. With the new year at hand I've decided to face the music head on. Instead of seeing these events as negatives I'm starting to see them as positives. My lease is up on the apartment next month and this is my chance to leave New York City and do the things I promised myself I would accomplish this year. These are my resolutions for 2011:


1- Complete the HIV/ AIDS contributed book and have it published. It's written by everyday people living with or affected by HIV/ AIDS. Tentatively titled, HIV at the Dinner Table: A Modern Diagnosis
2- Complete my fictional novel (non-HIV related) and have it published.
3- Do my part to end HIV stigma in America: ROAD TRIP across the U.S.A. interviewing individuals affected by HIV/ AIDS.
4- Find a new home- preferably with palm trees.


No longer will I live in an overpriced city that I can honestly say I am "so done" with. There is no reason why someone in my condition should be working two jobs just to get by. I'm not in fashion, don't care enough about Wall Street, and I have no interest in theater (although I have great respect for the arts.) Many years ago when I wanted to leave I packed my bags and drove, only to return to my hometown. This time I'm going to plan constructively. That's when the idea for the road trip came to mind- allowing me to possibly accomplish two resolutions in one- educating others on the true face of HIV and finding Christopher a new home.


Now that a year has gone by and I've learned how the world views HIV/ AIDS I feel it is necessary to do my part and show the world the real face of HIV- outside of celebrities and stigma. Approximately six months from now I will be leaving for a summer road trip, making stops in most of the U.S. states. I will be documenting and publishing my trip on a daily basis via blog entries as well as video recording. That way, everyone can follow me on my journeys as I experience them. I may start a website dedicated to this adventure. Details to come. Many individuals have expressed interest in having me stop in their hometown and I welcome the invitations. The end goal of this trip is to have the entire world see the real people with HIV and illustrate the importance of ending fear and stigma as well as knowing your status.


This is my plan for the new year. I sure have my work cut out for me, but it's work that I know is necessary to make this world one step closer to ending the current state of HIV in America.  Here's to 2011- the year the world will see HIV in a new way!


Interested in learning more about my trip? Would you like me to come visit? Have ideas for the trip? Feel free to contact me this way:


Email: cjmyron@gmail.com
Facebook: www.facebook.com/cjmyron
Youtube: www.youtube.com/cjmyron -- I'm going to be more proactive about posting videos on my page. Subscribe!