With Hope

Ever since my diagnosis, I have felt more at peace in my life than I have in a long time. I regret the delivery mechanism, but that’s reality for you; sometimes the lesson one has to learn comes with a price. While that is nevertheless true, I walk forward with a great deal of hope. My future has finally started to take a shape that makes sense for me, and I am very pleased with the direction it leads. I will be able to dedicate my time to advancing myself forward in the world and finally earning my degree. I will lift myself up out of this life I have and go where I have always wanted to go; unencumbered, self-invested and free to be who I am. I feel like I have been blind for so long, and suddenly…

I know what I’m going to do, and next week is all about putting the ball in motion. I’ve got 4 transcripts to collect and then I get to go school shopping. I intend to apply for scholarships and grants to try and fund my education, while I continue to work full time. Can I really do both of these things? Yes, I think so… especially now that my internal priorities have dramatically changed. It pains me to say it, but being infected was exactly what I needed to jolt me out of my complacency and make me see the whole picture of my unfolding life.

The best part about this situation is how right it feels. Subsequently, it doesn’t seem manic or out of control at all, instead, more like the sun has just burned through a thick fog. Or that feeling right in the middle of my first cup of coffee in the morning, when the cobwebs blow away. What is to become of me? I think many good things, and even more opportunities for them that I am making for myself. I do have hopes and dreams and they will be realized damnit!

I don’t recommend getting an STD as a way to jolt oneself out of a depressed cycle, regardless of the effect it had on me. When calamity strikes, it can take myriad forms; this just happened to be the one selected for me. Yours may be different: a death in the family, a lost pet, car accident, breakup… pain and shock can be boons as well as burdens. Those moments force us to harshly reconsider our current course of action, especially when the calamity is self-invoked (like mine).

So my point is, maybe when something truly life changing and terrible happens to you, there is a good reason it did. The real question is, can one find meaning despite great pain or sadness?