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HIV/AIDS Blog Central

Angels on Loan From Heaven

By Betsy Yung

October 31, 2012

This article was originally written on April 6, 2012.

I have been not-so-skillfully surfing the rough seas of depression these past weeks. The loss of my very best friend (for some reason that remains unexplained) has really put me off my game and cut into my heart. My moods swing between anger/hatred for how he is hurting me and acceptance/grief for the loss I feel. If you have someone ... be sure to remember how lucky you are to have them.

I guess it's not easy to be the friend of someone with HIV/AIDS. Some days I can hardly blame my best friend for abandoning me. He is healthy. He has many friends and dealing with them is fun, not painful. He has a new lady-friend who is not comfortable with me or my illness so I guess it was inevitable that he would move on. I cannot describe how much I miss him. Having someone to call when you are lonely or someone to hang out with, to laugh with, to cry with ... is so important.

Charlie

There is one speck of light in my life ... his name is Charlie ... he is my own personal angel.

I have had many dogs over the years. My step-dad is a successful veterinarian so I have enjoyed the benefits of caring for animals my whole life, but Charlie is special because he was just a wee puppy when I was diagnosed and he was the only pet I was able to keep when I came home from the hospital. For four months he was the sole reason I had to get up and move around. Today he is my sunshine and usually the only one who even tries to bring a smile to my face.

Charlie has Alopecia X, a mysterious loss of hair fairly common among pure bred Pomeranians. Currently there is no known cause or cure (hence the "X"). When he was an adolescent he lost the hair on his chest and belly ... exposing his cute black nipples ... since boy-dogs don't need them, they're perfectly flush and look like they've been drawn on with a Sharpie. I started him on medication for a thyroid imbalance and the hair on his chest finally returned but this year he has lost much of the hair around his neck and back and all of the hair from his fanny so from the rear he resembles a baboon wearing furry boots. He doesn't seem to mind the cosmetic imperfection and I think he's perfect anyway.

In my travels around the Web and various blogs very much like mine -- created for the sole purpose of flushing negative thoughts in the hope of helping others as well as ourselves -- I find that pets seem to be foremost in the maintenance of our sanity and a common thread we all share, the desire to care for someone. Having that unconditional love is magical beyond description. I thank the universe every day for lending me the angel I named Charlie. I can't imagine a life without him. He is truly my very best friend now.

Hopefully I'll find a way to force myself out and eventually make a new friend, maybe. I have a tendency to isolate myself. I haven't been able to figure out why and my motivation toward changing it is just not there yet.

Trusting someone again may not come easily.

I will try to post more photos, since they add more visual effect.

Great weather today and this weekend, I'm going to try to get outdoors, that always seems to improve my mood.

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See Also
Ten Things You Can Do to Enhance Your Emotional Well-Being
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Reader Comments:

Comment by: J Wed., Oct. 31, 2012 at 10:59 am EDT
I am sorry. i deal with depression too and it is awful. Yes, people leave you when you are sick or are going through hard times. I will never understand that either. Praying for you. God never leaves us.
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Betsy Yung

Betsy Yung

Just your average, hard-working, middle-aged lady living with AIDS and making the best of it.


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