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It's hard to believe that World AIDS Day is a group I can join on Facebook. It was nearly 22 years ago that I first became aware of HIV and AIDS; I was ignorant till then, perhaps, since I spent 1985-86 in Jerusalem and didn't make many gay friends till my return, as I was still "on the down-low" myself then.
I did have one gay friend in Israel that I knew of, and he never spoke of AIDS, and apparently behaved as though he was unaware of it. I've run into him at my synagogue's High Holiday services in recent years, and so either he was genetically lucky, or modified his behavior, or both.
How tragic a distance I've traveled since then, losing a number of dear friends, who were just in their twenties, and have had to wonder at God's plan more than I had ever meant to.
This morning, I read an article in "The New York Times" about a reporter's infertility and her decision to enlist a surrogate mother to carry her egg to term after the reporter had been devastated by a number of miscarriages. She wrote that she wanted to do whatever she could to fix God's plan and I thought: Your drive was greater than mine, since only half of the baby's genes would have come from one of us in my family; Pat couldn't contribute, and so after nine IUI attempts, as I've written here before, I gave up and deferred to what I said must have been God's plan.
This occurs to me on the eve of World AIDS Day, I guess, because my inability to create life organically is the closest I've come to dying myself.
Please, God, let me honor the friends I've lost to AIDS through my behavior on the 1st of December and always.