My Greatest Fears
June 1, 2013
All of us, no matter how big or small, have fears. They can be the smallest thing to one person, yet to another, something so significant. People say to me, "Patrick, you are so fearless; you must not be afraid of anything." Actually, I am very much so afraid of things. I am open enough with myself, and also with you, to inform you that I am not perfect, nor has my life been "clean."
I believe that so many times we try to give this portrayal of perfection -- you know, always wearing condoms, always getting tested, knowing who you mess around with's status, having the best relationship and communication, having a 4.0 average, etc., etc., etc. We all know that for the most part that is a crock of bull. No one on this earth is perfect and instead of constantly walking around acting like our stuff does not stink, we should acknowledge our impurities and use it as a building block. Life is like one of those machines in the hospital that shows the heartbeat, constantly going up and down. That is the point of life ... We all go through ups and downs; without it we would be dead.
So, let's see: Back in the day, I was never perfect about using condoms, I never was properly educated on sexual health, my family is dysfunctional as hell (no picket fences or 7th heaven), I am an emotional eater, I do not see myself as attractive, and that just scratches the surface. So what are your impurities that make you human, and how can you work to use them to your advantage to better yourself?
My greatest fears ... Well, let's see, the best thing to do is to do this in bullet points:
- I am afraid of the dark.
- I am afraid of the NesQuik bunny.
- I am afraid of any person dressed up as a character or animal (Disney World is a no-go).
- I fear never knowing where I got HIV from or if that person's infected others knowingly/unknowingly.
- I fear my friends and colleagues having to go though the things I have gone through in the past year.
- I fear by having a family that is in shambles and a father that does not truly give me 100 percent; that I will be the same to my children and they will do the same to their children.
- That I will die before seeing my 80th+ birthday.
- Being alone.
- Not leaving a legacy or not touching at least one person's life.
- I will not live to see a cure or vaccine for HIV.
This list goes on and on, but those are my greatest fears. I think, in the black and Latino community, that weakness is shown by discussing shortcomings, fears, and defects; however, in all actuality, discussing such personal and difficult things shows strength and bravery.
How do we correct this? What are your fears, and will you be brave to talk about them?
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