I have been dating my partner, now my finance, for over five years. Five years and three months to be exact. We met shortly after I made the decision to come out, had separated from my wife and moved into my own apartment. We met at a Meetup group that held monthly dinners in local restaurants for gay and bi men. A mutual friend introduced us. But, it would be eight months before we would go on our first date. Continue reading
What alters our sense of self? How do major life events make us feel less ourselves, and at times, have us lose sight of who we are?
Since before my wife’s death this past April, I began to live in the house that I had moved out of four years earlier, when I began my life as an out gay man. I had never planned to live in our house again. But that all changed as my wife’s health declined from terminal cancer.
On Tuesday my wife got a port put in her chest for the two chemo drugs she started yesterday to treat her cancer. The procedure, which took place at a local hospital, was expected to last a hour. My wife and her parents were at the hospital for six hours. When I heard how the day was going I offered to make them dinner so they could sit down to a hot meal immediately upon their return from the hospital. I knew they would all be exhausted.
Last Saturday my partner came over to the house that I moved out of three years and nine months ago, to meet my wife and her parents for the first time. This gathering was a long time in coming and was driven by my desire for my partner and my wife to meet. The timing was precipitated by my wife’s increasing decline from terminal cancer. She soldiers on with a new chemo regiment that begins today, with the hopes of slowing down or shrinking the tumors that increasingly inhabit her abdominal cavity and lungs. These new drugs may only slow down the inevitable, but they will not stop the cancer.
Since graduate school, when I had to buy my first computer, a pre-MS DOS machine, I have been online. No, not the internet. The internet did not exist in 1982 when I started graduate school. But leading edge, circa 1982, online services did exist. In 1982 I would dial out to The Source, and a few years later to CompuServe, when they acquired The Source, and then in the early 1990’s the internet. One of the things I regularly did online was reasearch medical topics, mostly by reading medical journal articles. I was an early user of the new online repositories for medical journal articles.
In my work I have often prided myself at being able to look at a project and know from the onset if it would be a success or a failure. This same projecting into the future and imagining what will be has always been a part of my life. I can often look at a situation and see the key outlines or framework of what it will be in the future, even if I can not see the details.