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Yesterday was the anniversary of my uncle's death. This is a pretty big deal for me. Sometimes I feel like I'm stuck in 1994 in a PTSD sense, and I don't think I've fully grieved his death. Yesterday, for a lot of reasons which are complicated, I think I went a lot of the way toward accepting what happened. I wrote this on Facebook, and since it's a bitch to track anything on FB, I wanted to catalog it here. It's the first time I've said a lot of this.

Robert R., Jun 17, 1953 - Jan 16, 1994
I always have so many things I want to say about this day, and AIDS, and what it all means to our family, because you've always meant the world, but you were never a sap and neither am I so I'll keep it short and New York. You're the reason I care about gay rights, from meeting Steve Schalchlin and repeatedly seeing the AIDS quilt, to loving the palimony agreement scene in the Birdcage. Pretty sure you're the reason everyone in my family's seen that movie over a thousand times, no joke. You're the reason I HATE Madonna, because I was jealous and I always will be, and you're the reason I'm out as hell and always will be too. I love you and I'll think about you every day until I'm where you are. I miss you. And I hope I make you proud.


I've felt like I've been on death watch for a long time now, kind of obsessed with the whole phenomenon. And as a result, I've been exposed to a ridiculous amount of death the last few years, in the sense that every single one hits me like a punch in the gut no matter who it is. This is pretty debilitating, since people die every day in large numbers. I've been pretty trashed, honestly. I think that actually dealing with Kerri's death, and then dealing a bit more with Robert's death, has helped me more than I could have expected.

I feel better. :) And I don't think I'm on death watch anymore.

Thank you, Robert. Again, still, always. (As usual or for the first time. :D)
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Yesterday was the memorial service for my friend Kerri Miceli.

I can't say anything amazing and articulate right now. I will say that she was my best friend in the apartment complex (or in fact the entire group of complexes we'r'e affiliated with). I'm severely, severely agoraphobic--Emily Dickinson is quickly becoming my idol, or something, to give you a comparison. For those who don't know, she rarely left her home but she must have written every day. So anyway, since I don't really leave my house... Kerri being my friend meant a hell of a lot. She was safe. I could tell her almost anything--although she never believed anything bad of me, so there were certain topics we just didn't get into. The person I want to talk to most in the world right now is her. My PTSD is going batshit crazy right now, and I'm pretty sure it's worse because she's not here.

Which makes me feel like shit, like it's some kind of guilt trip towards her or something.

This is just not an easy place to be. People here are in some cases really sick. My roommate's lost her entire family this year, one at a time. It's just... it's hard.

I know how this song and dance goes. I'm going to miss her every day, and think of her every day, and wish I had told her I loved her every time I saw her. I'm going to cry every day for a while. And I'm going to think about all her projects that were left undone, and wish I could fix that, but know there's only one person who could have done that.

I'm glad I was at the service, and got there early. Her dad talked to me a lot, gave me possibly the best hug of my life, and told me I was a great friend to Kerri. Man, it should just never happen that a parent has to bury a child. Ever. I can't think of anything more... just... God, why? These poor people. I should have hugged back harder.

I asked him to stay in touch and he lit up. He kept stopping me to talk to me. I think I helped. I hope I helped.

Here I am writing way more than I thought I was going to. But at times like these I think you just want to say as much as you can over and over so nobody forgets.

In the end I didn't really know Kerri Miceli well enough. She was only in my life for a year and a half. But I knew how to pronounce her name--better than the minister--and what she liked and who she was and how to be good to her parents.

That has to be enough, right?




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July 2017



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