Last night, on Project Runway, Mondo Guerra, a talented little Urkle of a guy "came out" as HIV positive, and rightfully won the night with this amazing print which he created using plus signs. HIV positive. Funny that his name means "world war."
|Here's the official show pic, complete with sponsor.|
What made the teary-eyed moment, at the judging, especially powerful was that he hadn't told his family yet about his HIV. It's a secret he's held onto for 10 years.
He used art to say, "This is who I am!" And you could see the weight lifted off his shoulders as the full realization dawned that he's not just told his family, but the world.
I cannot even imagine the amount of stress this has inflicted upon this poor guy's health system. The closet, as we used to say at Bridges Across, the "failed" cross divide dialogue project, is evil.
But stress on a person who's HIV positive is very bad.
My new doctor, Dr. Anthony, said that AIDS causes the body to be in a low grade inflammation all the time. In fact, I'm on a new health regimen. Been into it for about a month because my blood sugars are too high again, my cholesterol and triglycerides are out of control again, and the stress of moving. A new city. A new life.
He said, casually, "That's why HIV positive people look 10 years older than they really are."
I laughed out loud. Doctors just tell it like it is, don't they? I love it.
I turn 57 this next week. Do I look 67?
Meh. Who cares.
But, I need to get my tests results back in the normal range or I'll be in trouble.
He said, "You're pretty much maxed out on medications. What are you eating?"
"Well," I told him, proudly, "Ever since we got to New York, I've been all pasta and pizza. But I've changed. I'm now eating a huge bowl of greens, broccoli, spinach, etc. and only a little of anything else on the side. My body's pretty good at responding to good things."
"And I've started doing push-ups between writing sessions, all day long, like I'm in training."
"Squats. You need to do squats."
I hate squats.
"Okay, I'll start doing squats."