Sunday, December 13, 2009

Unexpected New Changes

As I write this blog, after a long stint of absence due to work and travelling, a family friend has just given birth-- her name is Chloe.

Just before her birth, other major catalysts of change happened, one of them was the leaving of a friend to a far away place wherein she can start a new life and, hopefully, acknowledge her errors and work on her character that she may truly grow.

This friend of mine is one of the people we could say that lost their way and, though loved by many, has done some actions that made conflict among friends and much suffering and emotional pain was garnered by all affected.

I, on my part, tried to do the rewards program of offering her something she would like every time she was able to refrain from taking drugs. There were times when I knew she did the drugs and would still have the gall to ask for rewards-- it made me resent her attitude, asking to myself why she'd even think I was born yesterday to believe her. With that little tilt of character, her principles have changed and all I could do was to sit and hope as the war grew longer and all sides were exhausted.

Life, mysteriously yet aptly, intervenes and quells the entire issue by making her leave to start anew in the USA.

The only thing I genuinely feel is gladness. Why not? It's a brand new beginning for her and I know, deep in her heart, like all of us, we all got tired too.

Aside from that mysterious boon in the sky that came in the form of a VISA and a plane ticket for my friend, another bona fide miracle has occurred in my life-- I am falling in love with someone who is negative and he, even though he knows i am positive, thank God, feels the same way.

Commemorating the pains that my last ex has wrought upon me: extorting my being positive to gain the upper hand in most situations was one of the worst things he's done aside from others, I really thought that I could only have a relationship with someone who is also positive: harder than finding the holy grail, indeed.

Like the change that I used to hope for that no longer expected at all, my friend leaving; another miracle comes in the form of a budding love from someone I would label as 'normal'.

Much like the fascinated Bella of Twilight to her undead vampire, Edward, this guy simply makes life much more worthwhile for someone like me, who sees life as a fleeting parade of grey areas. I rigorously enforced myself to be callous towards life. Wearing a mask painted with a smile, I was a cold alabaster manequine that saw the world as something to be calculated and measured with cunning and shrewdness.

My walls were not high enough for this lad's leap of faith just to see, and even be with, the fragile undead child that surrounded himself with shadows, roses and thorns.

He is a master. Unknowingly, he has disarmed all my conditionings to play it cool. He may not know this, but oh, he will when he reads this-- he is the greatest miracle that has happened so far in this new second life of mine. And though I know different miracles will still come in many other forms and things, I have thought and decided to myself that I would keep him for as long as my life could sustain.

Much like the ARVs that I am taking, with the adage that 'first is forever', since I am in a contract with mortality, making sure I must drink them every 12 hours from the time I drank it first, I am his first in almost everything we do.

Knowing this to be my second life, I have forgiven myself but will never forget my mistakes in the past.

With him, I will take those memories to heart and make sure he feels cherished. After all, memories are the only things I can take with me when I go ahead. Henceforth, the sweetest and happiest memories will involve him...

... for as long as my life can endure.

Well then, here goes...

Sunday, September 20, 2009


They told me that getting drunk was bad for me.

Ok fine. I'm not drunk. I'm tipsy.

Tang ina. sarap. Shet.

Saturday, September 19, 2009

The Oracle

It has been a while since I have returned to Baguio.

Being assigned to accomplish a task in the province by my mother, I was asked to travel on my own, once again, to a city to the far north of Metro Manila. A city where the scent of pines is forced to marry with the billowing clouds of automobile exhaust. A city I would frequent years ago due to the nature of my work; this city could actually stand on its own, without bothering if it would have been compared to the Philippines' NCR itself. It could just simply stand there and operate coldly like it's climate.

The chill was a fantastic yet familiar feeling to my once easily irritated skin.

My trips coming up to Baguio, prior knowing I was positive, saw me being easily growing fungus on my dermis. This trip I recently had saw no complications in my dermis at all. True enough, my immune system has gained ground and it shows beautifully.

Having dispatched the assignments that I was tasked to do, I met a new friend whom, in my sneaky way of leading the conversation about the issue of HIV in the Philippines, without letting them have a hint that I'm one of them, informed me that the virus has already rooted itself in the City of Pines and there have been 19 recently reported cases therein. These citizens of the cold city found out about it not in Baguio itself but at the beach zone that was kissing the mountain's feet: La Union.

Gathering the information, I concluded that the stigma, too, is imminent and that there are probably much more infected people that are not aware and are probably spreading the virus in a way that it would soon be as massive as the fog that sweeps Baguio's hills.

With the conversation being swept here and there afterwards, we touched down on the topic of vivid dreams and right there and then, I remembered one of my closest friend's heads up about someone who does more than just fortune telling. I thought of verbs or adjectives for it: scrying, clairvoyance, future sight but he told me that she presents the most precise possibilities in point blank verbs that are easiest to understand and if not, would be further clarified by discussion. Confidentiality, of course, was part of the bargain as it cost five hundred bukols.

And oh did a lump fall on my head because I remembered this at the last evening of my trip. I was glad the oracle (with all due respect, I'd call her that instead of a fortune teller) for believe she is more than just a mere fortune teller with the way she executes her craft. She responded aptly, probably in both our convenience. Was she THAT clairvoyant?

Initially meeting her, we were interrupted by her younger brother who turned out to be a former ally/nemesis in one of my on line gaming campaigns when we set a record in Philippine Online Gaming History nearly three years ago.

A small world indeed and quite smaller, in a cramped way, when she shut the door of her reading chamber once she began to perform her craft.

She spoke of me in a way I would never have admitted myself. She read through me and put me in insigna that I may finally put my finger on tangible verbs to the storms and rainbows that abound within my viral cytoplasm. Shortly put, she told of things I knew but was never able to say and acknowledge and therefore was never able to process.

She saw how anger was intricately woven into my system and that it has been the drive that keeps me fighting and has also been the culprit that makes me fall-- all these in a case to case basis. Change? Difficult, for it is me. A trait, a characteristic and possibly a large part of my persona that makes me who I am. surprisingly to most, it would not be evident at first for it is subdued by my (as she read) intellect and somehow it has always been my saving grace in drawing the line between me and an angry barbarian who's running after someone who stole his club.

An intriguing prologue, it was. Though, of course, I was after something: answers, definitely. I openly told her about my situation and one of my questions was pinned down at how long I have to live. The answer was ridiculous:

"You'll have lived way much more than you have expected, and probably have enough time to spare..."

A cure is coming perhaps? Or is it the fight in me that would keep me running the extra mile in joining the Energizer Bunny and it's endless drumming.

I was born free, baptized Roman Catholic without my consent (as if I could say no back then) and finally ended up agnostic at the age of reason. And thus, for guidance, I seek it from our Creator's creation, this woman; a product of our Creator. So you can't vex me on that.

Eager? Anxious? What am I feeling now for the things I've learned about myself with her guidance? More of eager. Eager because, ultimately, my anger or wrath will soon be slated with results that will exact not vengeance but justice.

Ri~ght. It wasn't vengeance that need be sought. It was justice. And it happens to come in the right time and place so long as I keep my end of the bargain which is suffer, work and drama for it. Sounds fair? Actually, surprisngly to me, yes. I've come to the point where I don't really need a one up or more on someone to make myself feel satisfied for the day. Just work it and I'll be working it.


I'm back in Manila now. I'll miss those 10 hour long sleeps that can actually have further 30 to 45 minute snoozes. These slumbers begin and end with the same and non moving position. If sleep is a blessing, sleep in the City of Pines (especially in my house there) is a bona fide miracle! And it's not gonna happen again to me till I get back up there. *GROAN*

I've gained further information about the virus and how it has affected Baguio. I've gained new friends, including the oracle. And ultimately, a blessing in disguise, I'm spiritually and clairvoyantly assured.

Anger going away? Nope, not at all. I wouldn't be stubbornly getting well if not for that drive. Even if she called it a double edged sword, I'd rather have that than nothing.

Should I be expecting something? Oh, not at all. Expectation is the road to ruin, therefore, what I'm going to do is put all of what I've heard at the back of my head, continue what I'm doing and if anything simliar to what I've learned happens, then... I've to see her again.


Friday, September 11, 2009

For How Long?


That was my very first CD4 count when I found out I was positive.

How could it have been that low when my body was as strong as a horse? Though I recall having minor itches but that's all.

Like it's said about HIV, the virus feeds on your CD4 cells, therefore weakening your immune system. At 238, I was 39 points away to becoming a person with AIDS.

I couldn't ask back then because the shock was already too much. It made me go out to the quadrangle of RITM, look up to the sky and wait for an answer to pop out of the clouds. I was helpless. No sound logic could make me cope at all during those moments.

I just simply had shut up and breathe till I calmed down, back then, because more than 6 months ago, the jargons and terms used by people who have it and the people who deal with them were barely assimilated into my vocabulary.

I calmed down because of what they said: "Don't worry, it's time you took the ARV."

ARV. Anti retro viral drugs. It's not a total cure, but in a nut shell, it works like an anti biotic which you have to take on time, religiously, if you want to keep the viral load in your body down and your CD4 cells to go up. The problem here is, anti biotics kill the virus that makes you sick, ARV cannot penetrate through to your marrow to kill the dormant viri so all it could do is kill the ones that are prancing around like faeiries on Jaeger bombs in your blood, hence it's not a total cure. If you fail to be consistent with the ARV, the virus will develop an immunity to the drug and you will have to go try another cocktail combination again.

Think it's easy adjusting to a very toxic drug?

The trial periods for ARV combinations are not easy; there are chances wherein you could get fevers, burning sensations, rashes and other complications that I didn't want to hear about. I got hit with the fever and I almost passed out in a mall during that time. My sweat was cold, I was clammy all over, it felt like the animus was leaving my body and it was getting dark and grey at the blurry sides of my vision.

Hard enough?

I couldn't take paracetamol anymore. There are medicines that normal people take that you can no longer take when you are on ARV. At that point, I was told by the doctor that I should take fluids, rest, fruits, vitamins and PRAYERS.

Wow, prayers. Indeed, that was hell. But the operating word is now 'was'.

The period's long over now with my body fully adjusted to the Lamivudine/Zidovudine and Nevirapine combination (my ARV cocktail). My CD4 count has risen to 380 and my immune system is up again. The itches on my skin are gone and I just have to continue taking my meds on time as if it were a legally signed contract with the Grim Reaper.

But why 238 righ away? How come so low?

They estimated that I would have had it 4 to 5 years already being that my CD4 count was already that low.

4 to 5 years? That means... How many did I infect without me knowing?

I recall within those 4 to 5 years, my wild side would've made Steve-O and the cast of MTV's Wild Boys and Jack Ass look like a bunch of Carmelite Nuns.

No doubt about it, I could have infected someone already. So what do I do? I didn't mean it back then. Really.

Right now, what I'm focusing on is fortifying myself from within and working my way outward. Seriously, theatrics aside, this is just me. I'm not the hottest piece of gay meat in Metro Manila (but I'm not the ugliest for sure!) so it made me think (as the competitive sports enhusiast that I am): someone out there could be planting more than I am without them knowing it.

They could just be out there screwing someone silly and planting doom. Jeez, why the sudden sprite of concern going on?

Closing my eyes before I wrote this, I thought to myself: that middle aged man from Ayala Heights wasn't joking-- we are destroying ourselves without us knowing it. And true enough or possibly, knock on wood, even worse, mysterious deaths will come sweeping the country within 5 to 10 years.

I think he was pertaining to those who have it, are spreading it around, and won't check at all and will only find out when it's too late. The pattern could be the same with those whom they have infected. It'll just be like a domino of a grand necrological scale.

And cmon, you don't have to be hot or cute to get laid. You just need to be horny! It's that simple! Just turn out the lights and you can let your dreams and fantasies get of!

Speaking of dreams, I've dreamt of this, I think my dreams had somethign to do with this. I can't really put it vividly here because some of my friends know my dreams as I've shared it with them because I have had dreams that are so vivid and I actually remember them still. It just involved a lot of people dying around me.

All this thinking plus the multiplication table that they have in figures about infectoids infecting others and so on and so forth. We're talking auto genocide like they said.

5 years: that's how long I've had it at most.

5 years: that's how long it'll take for those who do not know to die.

So for how long?

How long before the entire country realizes that it's really here in front of our faces? And by realizing, how long before they accept? And by accepting, how long will it take before they act upon it?

Healing myself, I sit here in front of the screen, with but pieces of a bleak future for a lot of people, in my head.

I am lucky that I know and I am able to buy myself time with this drug.

What about the others who don't know?

For how long?

Tuesday, September 8, 2009

First Thing's First!!!

An emotional review and a reminder of direction.

A few days ago I was reminded by a very close confidant of the fall that happened more than five years ago.

This fall resulted into making me a total oposite of who I was back then.

It began when our eyes met June 10, 2004 at NUVO Greenbelt 2. I was wearing a red shirt, 3/4 pants and Addidas sneakers while he was wearing his black collared shirt, slacks and leather shoes. From that point on, I can still remember every detail at the back of my head and masochistically savor every nightmare it gave me after he broke up with me months after.

I did things that I was shocked to do because I knew I'd never do them. I did it for him. For us. I would give him the world and more. For us.

But that's what I thought.

Fast forward 2 years after, it was a long battle within. It was epic as I thought I had given a ghostly close to it 2 years after but then it came that reality would intervene once more to reveal that his decision to leave me was not just because he couldn't go on with the distance, it was someone else and it was all summing up into the flames in my eyes as we were on a car chase in Roxas boulevard. A car chase that meant 'STOP!' when all that my already dying heart screamed 'GO!'

I remembered vividly. Like a dying animal being skinned for commerce, I lay there defeated, with my eyes open to see and remember my predators, and promising myself that the world I wanted to give him was less than the amount my heart needed for it to be whole once more.

Something about me didn't let me close my eyes. It made me stare and look at every detail that brought me the pain. Even the person who introduced the new guy to him is a target in my thoughts: someday, I'm going to drive something blunt and jagged, drenched in my own venomous blood, down his chest and let him feel a tiny fraction of the pain that has taken a life of its own in me. I see this person, still old, desperate, honeysuckled for his money and his drugs and incredibly still facially challenged. He'll die soon, and it'd be an utter disappointment if not by my hand.

All these are but tiny droplets of a cosmic molotov cocktail that is carefully sealed and saved for some special individuals. But as for now, I am recovering very well . Where my wrath knows no bounds, my body does not. I have incurred the virus as prize for dragging down countless hopefuls to the level of being bitter and jaded simply because the world was not enough for my pain.

Like I have pondered earlier, this virus is a double edged blade which I can use to protect and destroy. In the new chapter of my life, I have already thought of a lighter side wherein I will find those who need help and somehow give them the courage to face the truth and live with the virus-- to experience, first hand, the glory of survival. That's not far from now. However I've unfinished business. I have to give in return, to him and to those who are deserving, a slice of the abyssal endeavor that has reminded me of the necessity of wrath and the alternative use for fire. Him, five years ago and that God damned old faggot bastard who introduced the other.

And now, I stand somewhat on the road to recovery and I am reminded by a friend's dramatic, syrup laden slag of a heart ache and another friend's amusing plight into a choking tunnel of love, that's gotten him all wishy washy; these remind me of the principal root of all this Hell fire. Him. Them. They will all pay.

But while I'm fessing up for the creme de la creme a la coup de grace: kudos as my CD 4 count has gone up by 142 points from a scary 238 to a luscious 380! I'll have to put on this sweet little venetian mask that says: "I'm a peaceful little sheep of Little Bo Peep and I couldn't even hurt a fly if I try~".

I lo~ve working inconspicuously. It's so double o sevenly sexy!!!


Calling me deranged?

It's a hobby.

And the good news?

I'm recovering.

And the better news?

I'm going to deliver.

And the best news?


*giggle even more*

*SNAPS FOR EVERYONE* (except for those two dog shit pricks)~

Tuesday, August 25, 2009

Ryan and The Lesson

Nearly 4 months ago, there was a guy I met online who had a brilliant mind and could easily communicate with me by just simply being himself with me. There came a point that we were getting somewhere just by conversation and somehow, he started phasing in and out like a phantom.

Months have passed, I've met new people in my new life and each one is somehow intrinsically unique in any which way I try to look at it.

While I was getting on with my life and learning to slowly digest people for the person that they are, the person mentioned above, Ryan, glides in again with a "How are you?" over text. He knows about me, somehow it just came naturally that I thought he should know, but that wasn't even before he started phasing out randomly.

The conversation came to a point where I slightly chided at his intellect, that even such a brilliant mind can be subdued by fear of knowing something one cannot fathom. He replied with a simple answer that should have been one of my speculations from the start:

"That's true... the truth is, guilt is also fear. I have a boyfriend, already... I had him even before we met... and I couldn't tell you."

No anger nor negative feeling of the like tapped me at all. I felt warm. I texted him and told him in a very meek way that I knew from the very start that he could never be perfect and that somehow he makes mistakes too. Though his personality was strong and was the type to loathe error, I could just simply sense the seeping guilt he had whenever we spoke.

Why? Why bother knowing. I'm just glad I met him and that's that.

For every person I've met so far, I didn't tell any of them. Just less than a handfull. But I enjoyed sitting back and knowing them for who they really are. Not rushing into anything and being less reckless wtih the ideas of infatuation.

I had to do this. Initially, it was torture. It wasn't my mode of operation but somehow, with dedicated curiosity and the thirst for changes, I saw that it felt very new.

I learned to appreciate them for the person that they are. I saw their strengths and their weaknesses. How they struggle with their obstacles and how they bask in joy with their simple pleasures. I became temperemental with how I reacted with their every deed. I just simply enoyed myself knowing them for who they are. Most of them new people, some of them, I decided to take with me from my old life into my new one. I felt that some were still applicable in my new chapters.

Time well spent. It was time well spent knowing them. Slow indeed, not the penchant of young and blood-boiling youths for their style is to rush into it for experience.

I stood there watching them get hurt, happy, funny, dramatic, lousy, heroic, martyr like, cunning, dastardly, altruistic, loud, solemn and every other possible adjective. I saw them and their humanity and I can still relate.

For this I am glad. I am even more thankful that there are times I could be there for them to cry on my shoulder. Even if I am single and I harbor something that others cannot understand, I knew there and then that I was needed and I could help.

I've already thought to myself that love and romance will come. It would be selfish and stalemate if I continued to think of it and hope of it's arrival.

Learning all this, and not being able to update in such a long time, I could just compare the thoughts I had before. I've finally found peace within myself. Real peace.

It's not over at all. Surely, obstacles will come and I will be tried time and again. But for sure, there is one sentiment that will be present when such trials come:


*Snaps for Everyone*

Sunday, July 19, 2009


Summing it all up, I've probably spent too much time and effort assisting my mother in her ventures. I was the only one who could say yes and do it. I was the only one who was probably brought up to say yes and do it. And currently, I am the only one who says yes, does it and doesn't really mind if it hits the fan.

Fact, yes. Complaint, no.

Why complain if it's a wake up call screaming at me? I've probably done enough that it has spoiled her rotten to make her work sloppy. I spoiled my own mother. I don't want that. Not speaking antagonistically, it's just that it's not good anymore. Too much isn't good.

I'm done thinking. It's time to move.

My sister's leaving for San Francisco this August and with that, I'll probably have less holding me back from doing what I must and doing what I want.

I want a life that is mine.

And it's about to begin, with but a thought, I've already created.

A very special friend of mine told me earlier that I should stop being so nice. I guess he didn't mean it the way I read it over my mobile, via SMS. Right, I was so nice that I was aching to help clean other peoples' back yards forgetting about mine in the equation.

I'm not being selfish here, but I've a gut feeling this isn't how it's supposed to work. My mother had parents too. She had to elope with my dad to get a life of her own. Maybe her parents had their tentacles everywhere that it choked like virgin ass. For a time, she probably hated their guts and for the moment she's somewhat exactly like them. Ironies of ironies, eh?

I will do this. But why? Ok, there has to be an answer. Why will I do this? For myself? Yes, probably but that's not the entire answer to it. I have to become better and stronger I guess. I've to do this because I do not have enough power and influence to make the changes I want as of yet, so I guess I'll start moving slowly but surely, with this goal in mind.

I wanna make changes. For myself because this is going to hit others. This is going to wake fatso, downstairs, in his room, up in a way that he's going to really want to wake up and do things. This is going to make mom realize that nobody should be, be it your kids or your employees, expendable and it is a terrible mistake to run away from your errors and let others fix it for you.

To that friend of mine who texted that sagaciously received SMS, I know he'll be the first one reading this now.

I see him as a towering inferno searing with passion for what he does and he is not the type to let things easy on anyone when he does his craft. No, actually that's what others and most would probably see him. To me, he is one of those few good men left on earth who know the very essence of honor and respect, though he may not be the type to admit it. He likes acting tough. It's peculiar. And I respect that.

Ah, why respect? He knows the truth about me. He dubs this virus in me 'the shrimp'. Watta Tempura, huh? He is the first in his premise to know it and amazingly embrace it. Though he noted that he has always been looking for a friend like me.

I called myself one of the 'forsaken'. He believes me to be one of the 'chosen'.

With mere words anyone of us can create something.

This is the true fibre of 'God created man in His/Her own image and likeness.'-- He created us. We create things.


I choose to move. I've done too much and it has got them nowhere because they're supposed to do something too.

Easy? No, honestly, no. Everytime I feel the toll racing down my spine, I know I'll be closing my eyes and asking for help within. And I know I won't be closing my eyes just once or twice about this.

I must do this. I must move.

*Snaps for Everyone*

Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Another Survival

Why did it take so long for me to update again?

Well, see here, I've mentioned about being the middle child and coming from a broken home. In this broken home set up, we have already reached the pre empty nest stage wherein we, the kids, should be taking off, however, the broken home per se as one of the factors, our eldest brother has a combination of the failure to launch syndrome and the Prince of Wales syndrome. If my mother made a miscalculation by treating me like crap, she made a bigger miscalculation by treating our eldest first born as a buddha. Thus the buoyant, bouncy and corpulent shape with the matching sluggish and sloth like lifestyle married with the illusions of grandeur that everything is as feasible as a fairytale (especially if he cries and dramatizes)-- mama would simply melt and give him his candy. Awww (fuck it.)

It gets on our mom's nerves but hey, she spoiled him before and she never will stop spoiling him. I told her that, but noooo-- like the complex equation above just said: she treats me like crap.

And yes she does and it shows as a warrant of arrest with my name on it was presented by a policeman outside our house nearly two weeks ago. I'm not at fault, but let's just say since my signature is on a check for a business of ours and my mother, bright and devious as she is in balancing and upping the ante to her favor, with me expendable of course, deffered payment to a supplying company.

It's not her name. It's mine. So yeah, she'd probably do a gung ho accounting stunt since it wasn't her goose that was gonna get cooked. I had to run and hide at my dad's subdivision in Laguna where the long arm of the law won't be able to reach my poor waning CD4 cells, who were just dying to find out that I was being charged by the Republic of the Philippines.

Surprised, I was solid that day it happened. I just kept quiet and smug about everything. Hey, she treats me like shit anyway, so what's new? It's just a degree higher (or should I say lower?). Am I this numb already? My younger sister was definitely pissed, probably because she saw everything from neutral ground, seeing that I'm doing what I can too help out with the businessess, as our Happy Buddha of an older brother stays happy as the buddha he is, chomping on the pie in the sky that's his girlfriend, who, by the way, will probably never make it to my christmas Card list or anyone in our family's at all for quite sometime.

We can spot a user a mile away, Fatso! Use your head!

Well, after hiding, I posted bail with the help of my mum's attorney. Well at least she thought of HELPING the dirt beneath her feet.

Thank goodness I'm still alive, OK, and amazingly not questioning why these are happening. Honestly, I don't wanna mind them too much. It's not good for me. I'm focusing on my closer friends who I play sports with regularly.

Some of them know, some of them don't, but they're real people. They're not the Ladida Society that go out clubbing and acting so nuveau and pleasing people, who don't care about the new stuff that they bought, or the expensive adventures and latest drugs that they shoved up their noses. Nope, they ain't that. They're people I can talk to when I'm feeling odd and they really listen and help out. They won't stab you on the back because they're not the Gossip Girl type shit that everyone's trying to be nowadays.

All this angst and I'm still ok and smiling coz I know that with the company I'm keeping, the sun is shining on this side of Manila for me.

It helps me survive. It's just that as life will always continue to pour the sweetness and the bitterness and all other kinds of bruhaha, as I have passion for my friends, their problems also affect me and just today a bitter ordeal has struck one of my close friends.

A break up. A gay break up. Usually, for most, they're as common as the jeepneys that add a silvery shade of bull shit to our Metro traffic, gay relationships come and go fast, hard and you wouldn't even know it happened if you don't update regularly.

Here's the sad part: in our team, we all love both of them. Of course, both probably made a mistake, but one had to cheat, and it was the younger one (as usual). They're age gap's kinda big, so I wasn't surprised, it's a technical you-ought-to-know, but it's still different when it really happens to people close to you. This is the part I really don't like: I don't mind if I'm the one getting rained on, but if it's someone I care about, it really affects me (eg Michael Jackson, I cried for him already, he will always be the King of Pop and media treated him worse than how my mum treated me, so I'm really sorry for it, MJ. We love you).

I survived. I'm gonna get through this. We're in this together. It's not game over for me. It won't be game over for you. There's tomorrow. Life goes on. Love goes on. Everything changes and movesin fidgets or leaps and bounds. Everything.

This is supposed to really bother me, but it's not anymore. Maybe because the worst has happened. Or maybe I'm as numb as the corns on my feet. Hah!

Survival. It's a jungle everywhere nowadays.

*Snaps for Everyone*

Saturday, June 13, 2009

Random Thoughts that Shape Truths

Events, words, people, situations: accidentals-- all randomly encountered that may formulate facets of facts that may filter my fluttering fancies, flooding ferally in furvor.

Fuck it. Nah.

The recent 'accidentals' that came in order and time gave me a thought from the very words of a pusit who was introduced to me by one of the 'normals' that I consider a vanguard of the truth that lies beneath my intricate and aesthetic exterior.

"Why don't you want them to know?"

The pusit says.

"There is a bill regarding the protection of our identites, in favor of those who would like to keep themselves from harm's way, ergo an angry mob with torches and pitchforks that may visit the exit a~nd entrance of our caves."

I snapped. Yet I know the moment after I did, I was being defensive of myself. I'm new to this compared to him and my survival instincts as a 'human' (when I still 'was' one). This was a defensive mechanism after the last meeting I had with the young educator who was promising but proved my being assuming was folly.

"Oh yes, you were counseled nga pala before and after the test. Yeah, OK. It's your call and it's our option."

He replied with due respect, as I can sense that he discovers my being a neophyte to the situation or maybe, with due respect still; it's my preference. Afterwhich, he threw another question.

"You're taking ARVs already?"


I said. Off course, we termed them as 'vitamins' since there were crowds nearby at that time; we were at someone's house party.

"How about you?"

I asked.

"Nope. Not yet."


"Well, the last time I checked, my CD4 count was still at 500, so they did not let me take the meds yet."

"When was this last time?"

"Last year--?"

I remembered that you're supposed to have your CD4 count every 6 months or something once you find out that you're positive. So I asked right away.

"Shouldnt you be che..."

"Nope. They still keep on pushing my scheds further since they say that the CD4 kits keep running out."

"But that's absurd. You may never know that your CD4 cells could be below 200~!!!"

After what I just said, he smiled and answered with the same cynical glee that I use to make myself believe that everything will be alright.

"Eh may kaibigan nga ako 5 na lang ang CD4, kaisng lakas pa siya ng kabayo. At nasabihan ko na si Nurse Anna sa RITM ng 'iniintay nyo na lang ako mamatay ano' at magtatawanan lang kami ng ganun."

"Eh one of my friends have CD4 count of 5 and he's still as strong as a horse! And I've already spoken to Nurse Anna of RITM telling her 'What? you'll just wait for me to dy, huh?' and we'll just take it with laughter. To be honest, it feels like a little cheat but if we're just fed up with our lives, we can justs top taking the pill and wait for kingdom come faster than you can say PLAGUE, right?"

"Oh. Ok."

I simply affirmed what he said because I saw the same cynisism that's almost as crucial as oxygen for my survival.

Turning the tables on me, he asked me if I found any guy I'd be interested in at the party, at that time. To be honest, there were more than a handful of guys who were probably enough to call my attention, however, my hands are already full as is. That's right, I told him that, ironically, this house party I'm in is set for me to keep my mind off boys because I scheduled three dates for this week with three different people, two of them I've already met up with earlier within the week and the third, would be the next evening after the party.

Talk about working it!

Honestly, among the three, I've already got my sights setting soon on one but I believe, after the error I committed after revealing it too early with the little prince that turned into a frightened frog, I believe this is going to take a lot of quality time. I'd probably reveal it to him when he says something like 'I'd die for you!~'.

You'd die for me? Really? Well, have I got news for you, papi. And afterwards, it's an honest blank. It's still the bloke's choice if he wants me or not.

After all, at some point of view, he's more normal than I am.

Thought being, the flow of it is randomly further dragged after my third date for this week which involved watching 'Blood the Last Vampire'.

It's about an ancient vampire who kills other vampires. Ok, with all the Edward and Bella and a different type of sucking that I haven't really tried, vampires are popular and are already known for the who, what, how, when, where and why of their 411.

Vampires were human. They were once normal. I was once normal. Equals:

There are two faces arguing in my mind now.

One believes that I am now carrying a weapon that I could use to kill someone over time. This weapon can be used recklessly simply because I can, or I can choose those whom I deem deserving of a slow death. Another option in this category would be that I can turn them into my 'kind', informing them afterwards and making them realize that they now have a small cheat if they get tired of life and they can also drag those whom they want to go down as well. Altogether, leading to the mass auto genocide that one of those creepy old guys was talking about when I was at Ayala Heights. Dark, Devious, nowhere near squeaky clean and definitely original. My mind is such a macabre piece of Satan wannabe.

The other believes in love. In love that I am still deserving of someone who will accept me and embrace me and this tiny little itsy bitsy virus that openned my eyes to see the world from a better point of view. This idea is the perfect real life translation of what Jesus meant when he said 'harder than putting a camel through a needle's eye'. A perfect translation. Ok, maybe I'm going to far putting Jesus in this and the stuff that he says, but ain't I right that he wanted us to apply his words to life, anyway? Really, most truly, if my mind can be darker than the most distant black hole in the cosmos, my heart can be the contradicting light that makes it do overkill overtime.

These are but random events and thoughts and ideas which I pick up from my version of the yellow brick road in the land of HIV, where I hope so freaking hard that I can finally click my heels thrice and really say:

"There's no place like home. There's no place like home. There's no place like home."


Wednesday, June 3, 2009

How The Shadow Falls

June 2, 2009, a Tuesday. I was able to do another good deed, I have referred my second person to take the test. This time it's a female. 

The first person I referred was a friend from one of my badminton teams, he came out positive and is now undergoing the necessary steps to keep himself well and with peace of mind.

Two weeks from June 2, around the 22nd at most, her results will come out and I pray that it is negative.

You think I enjoy seeing people discover that they are positive? Part of me dies to close my eyes and ears whenever I see them discover the truth for themselves. The part of me that remains convivial is to see that they pick the pieces up and get on with their lives, stronger and way much more than who they were before I they were even told about the realness of the virus.

For me, I thought I had accepted the truth. I did, I accepted what was mine. That I am and that I should be taking good care of myself now. Sadly, with the rapid adjustment of my psycho and emotional bearing to 'my truth' a certain interest group who is also focused on the fields of HIV and AIDS shared to me another side of the coin that I have not seen and I was not very much ready for.

I was brought by a friend to Ayala Heights in QC. I was brought to a big, airy and contemporarily designed house where there were three people having a discussion in the library of the house. One of them appeared to be in his early 20's while the other two were older at their 30's or 40's. The older guys looked stern, ominous yet focused and concerned. The younger one just kept quiet through the discussion.

I was introduced to the younger one and one of the older men introduced himself. There was one who wanted to keep his identity to himself.

After a discussion of my request for me to be trained to teach provincial areas and disarming their skepticism of my being 'early' to the ranks of our kind. I thought I was succesful until the unknown one spoke of something that spread chills down my spine and an unspeakable fear that replicates itself from generation to generation.

"You see, we know very well that only one out of ten people who are positive have the ability to pull themselves together and have themselves checked. The others will probably never do it and will consign themselves to oblivion. Within three to five years, all these nine out of ten will let the virus fully bloom within themselves and within the initial years of their asymptomatic infection they would have had infected others more than once at least."

The courage and hope in my fibres begin to feel the metal eating terror of the facts that he was dispensing upon me, verb after verb. And all I could do is listen, wide eyed, as he continued:

"Within five years, a huge chunk of our population will die and those who die will have infected others in their life. And the chain will continue and the younger generations will also have to grip the barbed truth of the virus' existence. And the cycle will move on to find itself not just a cycle but a snow ball rolling down the hill until it gets too big, that it will no longer roll and stop, or it will destroy things in it's path."

I could just die in front of him lsitening to the makings of an endless genocide that could wipe entire generations out.

"There could be a cure... Come on, you're scaring him. By taking the ARV's he'll probably have twenty or more years. Science moves fast nowadays. He looks scared already. Give him a break, sir."

The youngest one giggles as he speaks, suggesting that the scary unknown guy was just trying to test if I am really ready to take the responsibility.

The other older guy who introduced himself smiles at me and speaks.

"We're glad that you volunteer to teach the provincial areas. But as of now, there is no training schedules yet and I believe the time period while waiting is a good window for you to think and calm your mind. We care about you enough to let you know the dangers of this too."

"Uhm... any advice or tips?"

I spoke like a coughing lamb.

The older guys answers with a poker face:

"Don't miss your ARV's."


Wednesday, May 27, 2009

And Love?

"Don't deprive yourself of a love life. Love is part of life and for us, life will still go on."

These were the very and only lines that were trivial that came from my counselor. Bobby Ruiz spoke this with much conviction but I don't know if he meant those lines for me. I guess he did, since he was speaking only to me, at that time.

Serious relationships? I've had less than 10. Pseudo relationships? I've had somewhere within 25? Flings? I'm not good at accounting. A heart? I still got one.

A broken one...

Much like my body; but no one can see it since this thing's asymptomatic and they'll only know if I confirm it to them.

I don't have to tell everybody, sure don't. But what about those who want to get in my life. I can see it now as I've expected the worst: everything that they are promising to be and everything that they wanna share with me would and can plop into ashes as quickly as I can say H-I-V.

I'd be a motherfucking hypocrite if I said I don't want or even need a love life in the long run. But here in the Philippines, if the stigma upon HIV testing scares the living shit out of the misinformed public, the hell it can scare the most stalwart Cassanova, when he finds out that the bitch's ass he's been sniffing is spiked with HIV.

There are guys that I "dated" [dated, meaning that I went out with them, got to know them but did not stick any organ of my body into theirs or vice versa] that seem promising but that's the case: they don't know everything about me and of course, that includes the virus.

I had to see how it works. I had to admit it to one of them, and it was my biggest mistake in doing so because I admitted it to the most promising one. Promising because he's well educated, came from a good family of breeding and stock, had above average culture and seemed to be open minded. The operating word was "seemed" and it is now in the past tense.

Nope it won't cut it. Even for someone who can be the creme de la creme of the Roman Catholic Archipelago of South East Asia, who has studied from a top university, and is expected to know more and be a man for others-- Na uh. The virus beat 'Romeo' out of his wits. HIV 101 is still not available even in the highest bastions of education of the still developing Pearl of the Orient.


This is what they feel. If they had other feelings aside from it, fear would still be the prevailent entity that will drown all hope from people like me who are still people-- that's what we believe to be.

So what do I do now? How do I operate? I can just eat them like hamburgers without telling them, of course, I'd use protection, but it'd be the same thing all over again... just using a condom this time.

Oh yeah, I forgot. This could be my penance. It can't be all sunshine, unicorns and pink elephants in lemonade after knowing you're positive.

Alright, security blanket is off. I've to set my mind on how to operate. Heart? I've to set it aside, coz the moment someone does some math and decides to tell me he loves me, without knowing that I'm positive, it automatically means 'fuck you' to me. And like the vampires in the Camarilla do, we'll just toy around the little son of a bitch and decide if we give him the dick, the finger or the most painful coup de grace: become like us.

Cmon, you wouldn't love me if you wouldn't accept and understand everything about me, right?

So the next time I really love someone, I'll tell him. But not right away. I'll tell him when he thinks he's the perfect man for the job. And I do hope he holds on to his balls.

As for now, I think I'll go get myself a juicy hamburger tomorrow, eh? After all, my hamburgers don't have to know.


Tuesday, May 26, 2009

A Letter From a Far Away Friend

I'm going to paste a friend's letter here. I just received it today and it really warms my heart, thought short, it's precise.

We've never met in person. I talked to the guy online and he is one of those rare people who makes sense and keeps the internet worthwhile.

Statistically, I've had more nasty and carnal experiences from eye balls. I mean, in a country that nurtures a culture that frowns upon my people, we have no choice but to interact in the shadows of online chat and profiles. With this being the case, it is difficult to find real and honest to goodness people. There is a larger chunk of the online gay population in the Philippines that are just there to screw you and forget what happened. What about those who are just new in knowing that they're gay? Most of their hopes and dreams will be shattered simply just by meeting with the wrong people who are everwhere.

With this thought in mind, I will timidly celebrate this short letter I have received from a good soul that is immune to the limits of boundaries and distance.

And the letter goes:

Happy Early Birthday 


I believe that life has significant things in store for you. You have the warm heart of an activist determined that the misconceptions perpetuated for generations do not tarnish the spirit of those vulnerable enough to believe without question. Your strength in that realm suggests that in addition to fueling your own passion, you have the capability to touch the lives of others. And all you really have to do, in order to do so, is to live your beautiful life as true to yourself as you possibly can. 

Take a look at the cute boy in that profile picture of yours. The warmth radiates from your eyes into open hearts. 

I tell myself those words when my mind wants to drifts towards fatalistic thoughts surrounding the brain tumor a doctor discovered I had last year. Kinda Inoperable. Possibly Debilitating. But I don't have enough energy to devote to focusing on that. So I focus on maintaining my health & happiness, as best I can (even those sometimes I don't). Therein lies my peace. 

Anytime you need a friendly word my brotha. I am here. 

With an open heart. 

And as the letter ends, I take a moment to smile and thank the stars that I simply am and simply still.

It's not all that bad.

Usually I have a moment of tears a few days before my birthday. This year, there is none. Why? I do not know. The morale I have can be as neutral as it could be at the moment. My first birthday knowing that I am positive-- it doesn't really strike me much as I have expected. A bonus year, perhaps? There are things that I have to do, that's why He allows me to live still.

I have to find out what must be done and I have to do it as soon as possible, I guess.

I'm starting slowly... or the elders say I've started quite quickly.

Doesn't matter. I've started.


Tuesday, May 19, 2009

Meeting an Old Friend Anew

I had to drink an entire glass of water before typing this down and believe me, the glasses used for water drinking in this house are BIG.
We really don't like going back to the fridge to pour more water so we got them big designer plastic tumbler types in the kitchen.
Yesterday was yet another trip to RITM, and while waiting for the nurse, we stayed at the isolated ward at the end of the quadrangle. Of course, those waiting for nurse Anna would always go straight there and funk around with the other possies and exchange memoires and anecdotes of their lives.
I discovered something new about that room yesterday. It felt like it was going to be familiar to the "THIS IS YOUR LIFE" show wherein people who have come and gone in your life will ust walk through the door and surprise you; there was a guy whom I dated way back in 2006 who busted through the entrance with his partner.
How did it go?
At first he was ignoring me. Maybe he was finding out a way to explain why he was there in that same room as me. Maybe he was a bit ashamed? Maybe he was too preoccupied about how to digest the entire endeavor of being possitive... or maybe he just didn't see me at all. Maybe the lighting on top of me wasn't very flattering, and I should have moved near the window where the sun rays could hit me for that, oh so sought for prom queen glow.
Anyway, within a few moments after bickering about the unfair lighting, his eyes zero in on me and I utter the name which only I knew I called him. A nick name made from his first given name that sounded very Filipino.
There it was. That same moreno chinito smile that added to the happiness of Happy Feet, the movie that we watched in our first and last date in 2006. It was a sight for sore eyes.
We started talking immediately like it was no one's business. With all due respect, however, to his partner, I was formally introduced and I made it clear that we were just catching up with the good old times. His partner, gracefully, reciprocates accordingly.
So how long have you been this way? Who do you think gave it to you? Really? Needle in a haystack too?! So how did it feel at first? Who in your family knows? What did he think when you found out you were?
The Q&A portion just kept rolling and the entire room was busy with pusits interacting with each other. Jokingly, in drama, seriously, even with business, stories, Aling Dionisia and Manny Pacquiao topics, shopping, family or just simply things and topics to pass the time it was as human as it can be.
Hey, we still are. We're just... sun kissed (?) hahahahaha~
Anyway, I had to bounce to Alabang Town Centre for a moment because my sister in law who lives in Alabang Village, who happens to be a doctor, wanted to see me and check on my condition.
My sister in law has always been fond of me for my wise cracks and my gab and the way I was just so in synch and yet so different from the rough yet adorable boys in our clan. All the boys in our clan, even though we look profound, are green jokers and trash talkers at heart. As grounded as can be and as 'kenkoy' as we could get, all the boys, including me, have that thing going on.
Seeing that my skin is still in great condition and pretty much hasn't changed, except that my hair grew longer, she felt great as I explained to her my condition and that I was in good hands under the care of the folks in RITM.
We chatted for about an hour and a half in Coffee Bean at ATC. On my way back to the car park, there was this  tall (taller than me, I'm 5'8 he was around 5'10 Eeeek~) and hot dude (I think he was a kid, and I was right, he was 23) went up to me and gave me his card, asking if I could get in touch with him soon for a movie...
(Gusto kaya nya magkasakit? hahahahaha~)
Shit, diba? I love Alabang! I'm gonna buy a place to live in na there.
Anyway, after parking the car at RITM and walking towards the unit in the quadrangle, I saw a group of fruities accross and one of them was familiar.
A very powerful flashback rushed in my mind.
Last December, our fag hag made a request for her birthday, as she knew she was about to leave for USA at the turn of the year. Her very words were, quoted in Filipino:
"Guys, magpa check na kayo, madami na ang possitive na umiikot ikot dito sa Manila at madami din sa kanila ay hindi alam na ganun ang kanilang kalagayan."
<"Guys, have yourself checked, a lot are already possitive and prancing around Manila, a lot of them not knowing that they are and they're spreading it around.">
And with her request, our collective feelings were all of mixed aspects and polairites. There was fear, there was confusion, there was sloth, there was pride, there was even wrath at the fact that why did such a virus existed.
And there I stood accross the quadrangle. One of the same people who was with me that night, during December 2008, heeding the message of our fag hag elder, was standing right before me, accross the garden. We ran to each other accross the garden and hugged. He is a brother of mine now and even the company he was with were all familiar to me. I even knew their names and they were surprised that I had such a good memory to know all their names. I was shocked myself because I'm not good with names.
It was a moment that I would keep in my heart forever.
I knew in my heart, I was not alone and true enough, no man is an island.
But now, meeting him again there, even my ex date and noticing something about everyone in that place; everyone has this quality of maturity that cannot be bested by most. True, the quality of gold increases as it passes through the most searing fires.
I feel less lonely now. Focus was already strong yet stronger it grows. My place, I now know. My direction, I now smile at with open arms.
It's like meeting again in aother place and another time, far from the world we once knew as that of the normies.
We're vampires na ba? Wizards? Nah... sun kissed maybe? hahahaha

Thursday, April 30, 2009


It's been a while since I've logged something. I've been very busy. No, I'm not making myself busy to forget that I'm positive but I just simply am.

How have I been busy?

Well, I was nursing a broken heart. But I didn't sulk in it. I don't know how my system simply just picks up the pieces and moves on in less than a day. Yes, I cry. I must, it has to explode somewhere and sometime and what better than as soon as possible, here and now?


I just realized that love is coming not only from him. Heck, I don't even know if it's coming from him anymore, but I just realized I wouldn't have made it this far without family, friends and even people who I think are crap (the assholes are still part of my life, cmon).

Love: there's just so much to give and receive from the people who care. It's just perceived differently by each and everyone and therefore delivered differently. You just have to accept that.

Therefore yes. I was hurt, I was lied to and I was made to believe but I still wake up and I'm still breathing and therefore I am loved. Period. That's a truth that I discovered and can't be taken away.

Why waste time being emo on something or someone who's just out of it? I've to move. Each day I get is a bonus since I found out. The stress just won't make it any prettier for me.

No, it doesn't have to be another guy at all. And no it doesn't have to be romance. Not that there's ins't. There ARE people knocking on the door but hey, I'm enjoying everything now. They're welcome to stay interested and I'm not complaining at all. You can never tell, they might just press the right buttons someday.

Recently, things in life happen. Larger things: A family friend around my age just got married and attending the wedding and the reception was an entirely different thing now: NO ALCOHOL. But I was happy because without the inlfuence of a blur, I was able to see the clear reasons why not only the bride and groom were happy that day. I met people whom I don't know and they're great and I'm just getting close to having another feisty gal pal who's as alpha female as she can get. I also saw people getting totally wasted and come to think of it, it's just a blessing in disguise that I can't drink anymore, seeing that their poise factor went below sea level.

Even at RITM, the pusits who've been that way are slowly becoming my friends. And I know sooner or later they'll be like family. We share a virus that does a miracle-- it bonds people whom you just don't expect to do so.

I'm not endorsing people to have it, no! It's just that it challenges you. You have no othe choice but to fall or bring out your best and keep it that way. 

It's different when it's clearer! I can just think way much clearer than I've ever had in my entire life!

Oh ahem, but wait. My mum's been asking my sister why I no longer drink and why I go elsewhere aside from the family doctor to treat my 'liver problem'.

Clearly, I believe she ain't ready yet though I see she's begining to feel lighter around me simply because I'm just being 'positive'? (pun intended)

Actually, just now, I'm wondering how am I just being so optimistic. It's a total mystery.

The crying, the healing, the moving on and the ability to stand firm right away is a priceless product after all the bull shit that's been done unto me. Not that I'm angry about it. It just perfectly falls into place. This makes sense.

Taking the ARV every 12 hourse aside, everything feels normal.

No. Clearer, actually.


Sunday, April 19, 2009


Compromise is a virtue honed not a weakness detremental.

With that very line that I saw at the beginning of an episode of Star Wars Clone Wars, every fork that I pass has gained much more value than I could possibly imagine.

Being young and thinking aggressively, I initially saw that being HIV positive was a certain 'cheat' knowing that you're time is much more limited than you know. It empowers, knowing that you have a transluscent time table that allows you to know when the game can be over. Not a hundred percent sure but it's still an edge. Being optimistic? Maybe. Making a fool of myself? Maybe as well.

The rain that falls now upon Metro Manila is a welcome relief from the overwhelming heat that this cruel summer has brought. Each of the rain's tiny hands that pitter-patter upon the charred concrete jungle of mine is a temporary haven of pause.

That being said, I break myself into pieces and try to know my place in this life as of now. 

To be honest, I my love for family is throbbing within compared to my restraint in displaying affection for my siblings. Throbbing because I want to let it out by letting my mother and father know but I am restraining myself as of the moment because of love for them too. It's gonna hurt them to know. Letting my 70 year old dad know is totally out of the question. Even though he may be that open minded, he's already been through two or three strokes ergo he prides that his being 70 is his 'last two minutes' title to keep drinking and smoking. Affable fellow, might as well be consistent eh, dad? As for my mother, she will probably be the one who will find out soon but it's too early. The chances of her going balistic are 50-50. I'm still pondering on how this will come out, but with the situation and the stigma crawling around, I am being patient and tending to other things.

Today, I caught my boyfriend talking to a male voice on the phone. I was resting in my room when he said he'd go down to fix his things. It took some time and I wondered where he was. Arriving at our kitchen, I asked our staff where he was and one of them said he was in the front porch talking to someone on the phone. So before I opened the door behind him, I heard a male voice reciprocate through the phone to him as he was mentioning sweet nothings, sighs and cheesy stuff. I did not twist the knob as I was moved to rest my ear upon the door that concealed my accidental deed of espionage. As I felt him twisting the knob, I went ahead and opened it as if I was motioning to just go out for some fresh air. He had that shocked face and so I vacantly asked him.

"Who were you speaking to?"

"Maricel. My office mate."

He replied.

For a 'Maricel' her voice sounded like she had 10 balls hanging under her cunt. Doing the math, I cut it straight to the point and said.

"I was hearing your conversation behind the door. That Maricel sounds manlier than the two of us in Spartan armor."

He goes on the defensive and asks me why I was listening. 

Hey, if I wasn't listening then I wouldn't find out that 'Maricel" had 10 balls!

He moves on, the phone stuck to his ear and tells me he'll fix his things as I was going to bring him to the MRT station.

In the car, I gave him the cold treatment and told him that he wouldn't be going defensive and baffled if he didn't get caught. And why hide a man under the name of Maricel? And further more, you can talk to 'Maricel' in front of me if there was nothing that wasn't bad going on, right? And so, the cold shoulder was served upon his drop off.

A text message comes from him, apologizing that it was his officemate 'Jack'. Oh hohoho, "Just Jack!" huh? He's not good at covering up his mess. Not a convincing liar either. Obviously he couldn't formulate a rouse. Tsk. I know this manouver with my eyes closed.

Being older, I should have the initiative to speak to him but, alas, the way I deal with things, I take time to observe and be temperemental.

Is my value as a person less now that any intimate partner can see me as a push over because I am positive?

Not being stubborn but I believe esteem for myself won't change, but I will compromise now because every second that I breath, in addition to the moment that I found out that I was positive, is a bonus. There has to be a better way around things. There will always be yet it will not instantly come out, the moment friction begins.

As much as patience is a virtue, in the state I am in and with the virus I am carrying, compromise is an imperrative to be honed as well.

As every second is a bonus as bountiful as every tiny hand that the welcome rain sprays upon a weary and radiated Metro.


Monday, April 13, 2009

Careful What You Wish For

I'm baptized a Roman Catholic. I wasn't asked if I wanted to be. I couldn't answer back then nor would I understand what they were asking. Infants are usually baptized early into their parents' mutual faith months after their birth. With the Philippines being generally Catholic, I was dealt with accordingly.

Being a Catholic in the Philippines isn't really a showcase of hard core fanaticism and a la "The Godfather" ensemble. The spectrum is different. We've got the regular hard core RCs and we've got them hypocritical RCs and we got those who don't care, those who do it on their time and those who get on their knees when they're in dire need of salvation. The latter batch is the bigger chunk of the pie in Metro Manila. I'm part of the latter chunk,  but I'm still thinking if I'm gonna get down on my knees and ask for a Yamaha Grand Piano to fall on my head anytime soon.

This entire Roman Catholic shindig is a huge factor in the stigma for education combined with knowledge of contraceptives and protection. Truth be told: the Roman Catholic Church is pro education of the existence of HIV/AIDS but they frown upon the fact of hedonism, pre marital sex, condoms and uber soppy blow jobs, sixty-nines, BEL-AMI videos, threesomes, foursomes and moresomes, Katy Perry and her first hit single "I Kissed a Girl" and what it stands for and everything else that you won't see in a place they (OK, fine-- erase erase) WE call Heaven. They say that all of this is technically the devil and it should be erased from knowing. By doing so, they believe that by scaring youth that sex is the devil they have also deleted the curiosity that they are insinuating in them.


Ah yes, halleluja I was baptized a Roman Catholic. Halleluja more, the shamans running my institution is telling me that my soul will be in one 24/7 Swedish Sauna with natural fire and brimstone when I kick the bucket. Halleluja much more, the fact that I am gay is a reason why I'm carrying this baby called HIV and the good Lord, as they say, is going to smight me silly: pitting me 3 rounds against Godzilla.

Them be one (IF NOT THE ONLY ONE) of the reasons why one should not let everyone know if they are positive or not. Let's ask ourselves why we tell people. Why? We love them, we want them to know that it's hit home and we want to warn them that they could be next.

You might not get it with just one good screw at 50-50 chance! The point is, you'd know better had you known-- had you been informed. The good society would've done it's part by informing you the pros, the cons and the facts the possibilities.

I didn't wish to be a Catholic. But I clearly remember on the dot that I really did tell myself I did not want to reach 50 or 60 and look old. For the sake of vanity, I wished not to reach that age. Life has a no return no exchange policy that none can override.

I wasn't careful.

I wasn't careful what I wished for.


Everyday from the day I found out feels like a bonus and everytime I hear them hard core self righteous 'Heralds of the Almighty' adding dip shit to the scriptures just really makes me chuckle inside.

Wasn't it that Christ asked for us all to love each other?

Well it's their problem if they can't accept the fact that it exists. I've to make sure I keep it clean on my side of the fence.

If they don't accept the fact, they won't get the details. They'll be fighting in the dark. And what do you know, sooner or later it's gonna hit home and someone's going to have to say sorry.

Last night's show on GMA 7 regarding the "Think Positive" program of the World View said that the tally could rough up to 7,000 ++ people in the Philippines carrying the virus. That is so on discount-- we're talking horny youth and it's summer time, baby. They've got nothing to do except do their own version of "High School Musical R18" this summer.

Geez, parents these days. Thinking that their kids are still into the Care Bears and other kinds of tripe. There's the internet now, duh!

Y'all parents wished their kids knew more?

Careful what you wish for~


Tuesday, March 31, 2009

A Blast From The Past

Two weeks after taking my trial period of ARV (anti retrovirals) and I seemingly did not have any undesirable reactions, I visited RITM (Research Institute for Tropical Medicine) as per an appointed date with my doctor and I had to restock.

Accompanied by an old friend of mine who's been a well honed nurse and instructor, the trip wasn't as lonely as before. In fact, jokes came flying here and there as I drove through the traffic infested metro down to the south express way. It had been quite sometime since I had caught up with my pal, Joseph. He's been through a lot of heavy problems too, and it seemed he was one of the more objective and calm people when I openned up about my being positive.

After taking the morning ARV set that I needed, we were told that the doctor would still be in at 2 PM so we decided to have lunch at ATC. Hey, cmon, we're Metro Manila dwellers, it's a rare occasion that we're in Alabang during lunch time... so we had CPK at ATC. Wow, we have that at Trinoma naman, diba?

After succesfully convincing Joseph to order the Thai Crunch Salad that changed his entire paradigm about asian salads, I rewarded myself by playing one of my favorite video games in Time Zone-- Tekken 6 Blood Rebellion.

Kinda weird, huh? This doesn't sound like a blog by an HIV+ person at all?

Well that's the point, you can't tell if they're positive or not unless you have them checked. These people-- US, live normally like everyone. The doctor told me that she treats it like a  chronic disease. That's it. It's, like, not a plague of epic proportions in the USA-- for real! Again, it's just the fact that we're living in a soppingly hypocritical, severely prudent and image driven (Image?! Hello??) society that ain't doing rat shit for itself for being so.

Well, that piece of angst aside, (I used to have that in spades till I found out I had to chill to keep myself intact) back at the institute where the doctor was waiting, a familiar face bolted into the room where I was consulting with my doctor.

She was one of those legendary people who, for some graced and yet for some gored the streets and the club floors of Malate. Actually, she's a he but I'd adress her with all due respect for the succesful and well rounded implants on her chest. A very familar face with those fierce eyes shown. Eyes that peered into the soul of a clubber. I'm sure, if that clubber was high, he'd break down with a trauma that could last for months. A drag queen? I'm not sure, I wasn't able to ask that and I don't think it'd be the proper place to do so. But she looked straight into my eyes the moment she got in.

"You look very familiar."

Those eyes had a voice. And what a squeaky girly voice it was. That first line dispelled all the industrial strength, drag queen flavor she had in my thoughts. Come to think of it, it's all fiction and made by the cruel mean society that I was also part of. I pre empted that squeaky voice and the depth of those eyes because I saw my other friends shivering in fear, or looking in a disturbed fashion at her, long ago in the club. I pre empted someone who is in the same state as I am. I pre empted someone, way back, who made me feel better today.

"Ye... Yeah, you do too."

I replied in a shy 'Walt Disney's Bambi' like way. But I smiled because I just can't help it. The mythical fierce drag queen in the club is now a person in front of me, as am I, probably to her.

"You'll be OK."

She followed with a smile. OK, the smile scared me a bit, still. But she continued:

"I've been like this for sixteen years! So you'll be OK!~"

Wow, sixteen years of being positive and she still looks healthy and great. Fierce to be exact.

"Really? Gee, thanks... thank you so Much!"

I was at the zenith of being sincere. Much like a dog exposing it's belly to his master, I couldn't help but be thankful and warm to her because the fact that she's the way she is and she's being 'fierce' for 16 years-- that means I'm going to be OK.

That's what Joseph told me too. He also knew her. He also retreated at the sight of her.

No offense to her, at that time, we were not used to seeing people like that. But it was also our mistake not to look closer and question or find out why they get a kick out of being 'drag-ish'.

I'm not confirming her to be a drag queen, it's a profession and it's just that I didn't ask her so I didn't get an answer. What's that word? A tranny... yeah... I think in our world she falls under that bracket.

Her fierceness was a whiff of fresh air and a reminder that I can be fierce too. Well, not that way but I mean I can deal with this. I'll survive. No... I'll simply live.

I'll put it in how Joseph said:

"Wow, 16 years. She's had it for that long: You'll be, OK."


Saturday, March 28, 2009

Think Positive

Cliche as it may seem, I have to start thinking positive (pun not intended) as much as I can. That means it's nearly a 180 degree turn for some traits and niches.

With that in mind, it's a plus that I've gone athletic for the past years ( a year or two before I found out I was PUSIT).

I'm a badminton afficionado. I'm not in the Philippine Team (whew, that'll be a lot of stress) B~ut you can say I'm one of those people who play for extensive hours, to the point that we close the establishments we play in past midnight.

I've been playing for nearly 4 years and I've gone pretty far I guess. I'm not trained though-- I probably just observed and did it from scratch. The point of mentioning this here is that my heart is in the sport. Success brings positivity and the oposite... well... it brought me down. Probably even worse than a break up.

But with this in mind, my attitude has rapidly changed. I'm coping well with it I guess. I'm just being convivial with every game I play, be it a loss or a win.

I hope I can do this with most things in life. This is going to be gradual. From a game that I play to things like work, family, relationship(s) (?) (I mean, they come and go, but I'll be very careful from now on) This entire thing is brand new. I'm lucky to be callous enough to adjust to the fact. Callous? Why? Being callous is caused by too much pressure that it has made something somewhat oblivious or insensitive. Not really. I do care. I want to cry. I have. I know I will again It's stress but don't we all stress? Aren't we all human? Aren't we all smitten by something everyday or at least every other day, for the luckier ones?

It's a brand new life in an ironic twist. To be honest, I used to wish for a new life or to turn back time to a point where everything would be brand new-- I wasn't careful what I wished for and I did get it. Brand new indeed, with a chronic handicap. I'm not complaining, but isn't it like repeating a video game but at a harder level?

Funny isn't it?

What's funnier is that I thought I'd have a hard time becoming optimistic. I'm not a super hero now, hell no. Maybe my psyche is putting up a fight too.

Maybe there's no better feeling than staying alive.


Sunday, March 22, 2009

Knowing the Truth

"Well, the good news is that you are reactive to HIV1 and not HIV2."

The doctor said.

"...? Ok, what makes it good?"

Puzzled, I asked with a very grey smirk.

"Well, HIV 1 is a the dormant virus type which takes longer to deplete your immunity system. It's popular around Asia. HIV2, however, is the one that actively breaks down the immunity system and is usually found in westerns."

This is how I recall the doctor, informing me in the most layman term possible. This is how the very first minute of my life, living with the knowledge of me being positive to HIV went.

My body was unsure as much as my mind was. Part of me was expecting this to happen, given the all meat spree that I brought upon Metro Manila. But part of me, that deep seeded human instinct to survive, was shouting a note higher than Mariah's whistle. It'd be stupid if I entertained the though of "Am I gonna die?" or a smoother and ruder "How long till I buy the farm?"-- I waited for explanation and it came verb after verb after verb.

My entire body, mind, heart and sould depended on everything the doctor said at that time.

I was going to be alright, provided I take further tests to see how my immunity system was going and further down the road, if my T Cell count was below 250, I was to take the Anti Retro Virals religiously. It would save me and buy me so much time but I would be depended on it every 12 hours from the first time I take it.

All this set aside, I was shocked at myself for staying calm. I was more concerned about something else. I was concerned about the people who mattered to me.

At that moment, walking out of the hygiene clinic and through the hospital gardens with my friend Ayen, who also took the test, but ended up being negative (applause), I called my boyfriend to greet him. He knew I was going to get the results of my test that day so he asked what were the results.

"Ayen came out negative, Eru."

I told told him, making it a verbal equation that leads to an obvious answer.

"Well, what about you?"

The obvious reply still did not paint the picture in his thoughts. I knew then that he was in 100% denial mode.

"Well, that makes me positive."

I cannot get any more blunt than that.

"You're kidding?"

He couldn't get any more denying than that.

He asked me to pass the phone to Ayen and he kept asking and telling that it was a bad joke. It wasn't. It was the truth. It was the truth that I believed in no less than a minute after explanation because my life depended on it.

Eru was at work that day. He was about to get terminated and he was hearing this from me. It was probably one of the worst moments of his life. After the initial phone conversation, he had to cut it and deal with work for a few hours. Thereafter, it was the worst moment of my life.

The fact that I came out to be positive was easy for me to stomach. It's a truth. But what's hard for me to stomach is when I see people who're really special to me, unable to accept the whole fact about me.

I needed his answer. I needed to hear his voice. I wanted to know if he was going to stay with me or he was going to get on with his life. It was an excrutiating ride going home, with Ayen trying to comfort me because she knew that what mattered most at that time, to me, was Eru. Hours later, he calls back and asks me not to leave him. WTF?! Did I hear that right? Someone who's not carrying the disease asking me to stay? And this someone is the one thing I need to keep me tough through those moments. I needed him and he needed me and something really serious was going to stay serious, finally, in my life.

My brother and my sister and some close friends were the next to know. They all gave the same initial behavior: denial. Denial with the lines "Are you joking?" or "Cut it out." or "For Real? Come on."

It was easier for me to accept the fact. What makes it difficult for me is to see these people who mattered to suffer knowing the fact. I had to let them know, just in case something happens to me. They had to know because I love them.

See here, it's true that there are people who are HIV positive out there. Very true. But how would it feel if someone you know who's really close to you is? The scary part is, I look totally healthy. I've seen the others in the clinics and they look OK. What the people think is that people who are HIV+ are equated to people who have AIDS and therefore look like they're sickly or worse-- making it very difficult to believe that the person, who looks totally healthy in front of them, is HIV+.

All this being said, the matter has been dispensed. Anyone is a candidate and denial will not help the person carrying the virus nor the people concerned with the person.

Another truth? Sometimes, it is hard to accept the truth itself.