(Community Matters) I’m not a woo woo person at all. In fact, I’m often (though not always) too damn analytical for my own good. Anyhow . . . I’ve gone to a chiropractor twice this week for my back. The second time, he had me do a 45 min massage with a woman who was manipulating the muscles around my spinal cord. I liked her and we were talking. She apologized up front and then told me she thought a lot of what she was feeling was emotional. Now, that almost made me get up from the table, get dressed and go home. I was like . . . whatever. But, my back hurt too much to get up, I was naked under the sheet, and I didn’t want to be rude, so I asked her to explain what she meant. She said she felt sadness. I thought about this and it didn’t make sense – told her I was among the happiest, luckiest people I know. Oh yeah, I was going to Jan Hughes’ funeral that afternoon. No she said, it’s much deeper than something that just happened. Anyway . . . still didn’t make sense to me – silly woo woo people.
Discussing this Friday morning with Steven he encouraged me not to dismiss what she was saying. He acknowledged he didn’t know of sadness that I haven’t dealt with during the 12 years we’ve been together; nevertheless, he referenced Eckhart Tolle’s The Pain Body and suggested I pay attention.
Then, wow . . . during breakfast Friday morning, Andy Miller (the AIDS Services of Austin incoming board chair & LIVESTRONG EVP of Mission) just mentioned ASAs founding and founders. The mention alone immediately overwhelmed me, choked me up emotionally, I couldn’t talk. Remembering those who were in the trenches in the early days. It was embarrassing.
I’ve discussed the history of Austin’s fight against AIDS many times (I chaired the Austin-Travis County HIV Commission for a few years) without this emotional response. I’m lucky Andy brought this up in the chronological context of my back spasms and discussion with Steven. I’d already dismissed the woo woo stuff and am now thinking there might be something here. I remember attending lots and lots and lots of funerals, sitting at the bed side of friends while they died, hundreds of friends & acquaintances dying, and especially remember extraordinarily brave men & a woman who even while sick fought, organized, built and executed our medical, social service and other responses to AIDS. Very livid pictures of Paul Clover who founded ASA and Michael Fackenthall who helped grow and fund it immediately came to mind – they were two extraordinary men; I feel in love with both and never told either. Tom Henderson, Jeff Wisnewski, Boyd Vance, so many lost . . . .