Leaving a mark in the world
When Paul wrote about the men he loved who died I was moved to start living in that space. And I lived. I did not die myself. Hence, I began to collect wisdom from every corner of the globe. I got involved within my communities and I helped others stay alive and live longer lives. The more I helped others, the longer I lived. There is another trade off. I was part of a community of men and women and children fighting for every day and we did.
I always figured that I would fall in love one day, and that day did come. but, back to the story. I have a library at home of books that I have read. And in 37 years of my life, I have learned a great many things. I grew up, in the meantime, fancy that !! I Grew UP !! I was always scared of growing up, because I felt that part of my young life had been robbed from my so early in my life. I'm not resentful or anything like that, but I refuse to grow on certain issues.
When does a boy become a man ??? That was a question I always asked myself. I did not want to grow up like my father, miserable and drunk saddled with 2 kids a wife and a BIG SECRET. I had my share of issues in my life. Todd was a man who took care of me through the dark years of my life. HE is the reason I breathe today. And I have told him that repeatedly, and he smiles.
When does a boy become a man, I had no idea. I thought that I would "Feel" different when i grew up, that something physical would happen and I would "arrive!!" When my parents walked out of my life along with my siblings, well there weren't many people left in my life. At one point Todd and his lover left Florida for the Pacific coast and I was alone. BUT, i had a few male friends who took up the mantle of responsibility to help me. From 1996 to 1999, I was in a dark funk. I was sick as a dog, I mean really sick. My friends had keys to my apartment and they would come and go and cook and clean while ai was down. THAT was the last period of my sick life. Those young men ( we were all at the 30 mark ) then, helped me. Over the years I learned coping skills and i made some really STOOPID mistakes. but i learned valuable lessons.
I'm gonna skip from 1999 to July of 2000. ( i'd like to forget that period of my life ever happened).
I returned to Miami, trauma stricken, agorphobic, and beaten to the edge of my life. I stayed with friends until they figured I was ready to find a place of my own. and I did. I learned how to go back out into public. I was afraid of the dark and being alone. I could not go out of the house without an escort ( friends) who would take me to the store and the mall. I got a job and that was good. I was still alive. That's when i met a woman who would change my life. Andrea and I met a few years before at a workshop and we met again at a weekend retreat at Mercy Hospital we were attending a Mastery Workshop ( a life seminar ) so to speak. Andrea was a counselor. She believed in whatever worked. For a year she would come to my house and see me on a weekly basis. I got into Harry Potter and that saved my life. There were no coincidences. I became that little boy who overcame great odds to do great things in his life. That Worked for me, and I kid you not, she and i would talk about the books as i read them. She would find lessons for me to learn, as if a child. And i could identify with that. I got clean and sober in 2001 and that only helped my life.
In January of 2002 I had a dream. I dream in technicolor. This dream i was taken into a bubble in a lake, there were people living in the bottom of this lake ( kinda like that visual in the new star wars movies ) the people living under the water. There was a table and I was put on this table and this guy pricked my arm and said that i would be healed. That it was over for me. I had several visions after that of flight and of healing. I went to the doctor and that was the first time my t-cells rose over the 900 mark for the first time. That was February of 2002. I had been taking 1/2 my medication for almost a year and did not tell my doctor. That same period of time, one morning i was sleeping and i had this OVERWHELMING vision in my apartment. I saw a lady in white, I smelled roses and it was heavenly. After the vision departed I got up and went looking for the lady and I had to find the point of origin of the roses smell ( there were no roses anywhere ) and I could not smell it out in the hall or upstairs. I went to the window and outside on the windowsill was a crucifix. Now, there was no way anyone could have gotten behind the building and upstairs to put that crucifix on my windowsill. I still have that crucifix, it is in my backpack along with my other relics and such. I carry it everywhere I go.
My t-cells remained over 900 for the rest of the year. I came to Montreal at Easter 2002. I was sober. I visited St. Joseph's Oratory while I was visiting Easter Weekend. They say, the legend holds that many people were healed upon praying at the Oratory for a very long time. I lit a candle and went to mass. And you know what, after 2 weeks of being here I went home, packed and hauled my ass to Montreal. I just realized that Wednesday was my 3 year anniversary being in Montreal. It was this week that I came to Montreal in 2002.
I met Peter in October of 2002. ( The rest is history )
Over the years we have lived together I was part of several communities, and that is where I picked up my boys. John, Nic and Darshan. You know it is not difficult to be kind and to try and leave a mark on the world in the young people of the world. These three boys became pupils of mine. And I taught them the Tao of Jeremy. Each had their fare share of issues to deal with. Each of them live in different parts of the world. Each of them are gay and vary in ages as well.
The gay world is not kind, and can be cruel to a severe degree. Over the last 3 years we have walked through fire, we all GREW up together. And i finally figured out the answer to my question .... "When does a boy become a man ??" I became a man by growing up. By making good decisions by sharing my wisdom, i changed and i know when that realization began to grow within me. I don't have a father to tell m e what to do or how to do it. But i became a father in the wisdom I gave and the lives I changed by being part of something greater than myself. My boys have overcome some pretty serious odds. And I've walked with them one day at a time. and Now i am hoping that my son Clay will learn from me as well.
I HAVE left my mark on the world.
That is the one thing that every man, woman and child who has died from Aids ever wanted, to say "I was here, I lived and I knew a few things. There is a book called "A Parting Gift." The men I helped across left me their secrets that I have in turn given to the world - one person at a time. My boys have grown up to be very wonderful men. I will hopefully get to see another one of my boys this Summer when he visits the United States from Colombia, S America.
Books are wonderful things. Reading is fundamental. LOVE is easy when given unconditionally. I have loved and I am loved in return. i talk to my boys at least once a day and I have dome that for the last 3 years. Sometimes we go a few says without chatting, but I always geta report from someone. This boy has become a man, and now a father, life could not be sweeter.
I am greatful to you my readers. And I am greatful to men like Chuck and Gordon and Carmi. These men have made a difference in my life, in the examples of good men they are to theor families. All I want is the chance to leave my mark in the world in the life of just one person, and by doing that my secrets and lessons will make their way into the world as well.
My life was not lived in vain. i did something greater then myself. I loved a few young men into existence. Men who are strong, reliable and accountable. Men who know what real love is.
That's my story ... and Here is my mark.....The Tao of Jeremy !!