2022 was...

A year.

Here are my Top 5 Blog Posts (by views) of 2022, with some observations below. Enjoy!

1. March 26, 1987: My HIV Diagnosis Date With Destiny (March 25)

Excerpt: "The first day of school arrived, and mom dropped me off at school. I saw familiar faces, but it was mostly strangers from other elementary schools, and the energy of a fresh start with new peers to impress was palpable. This was the perfect opportunity to reinvent myself and leave those morbib thoughts about HIV behind me, and the plan worked until Homeroom. I wasn’t forty minutes into my junior high odyssey when a flyer hit my desk, informing every student to the fact that someone amongst them was living with HIV."  Read More

2. Neil Young’s Old Comments About AIDS (February 2)

Excerpt: "1985 was a really fucking shitty time to be someone with AIDS, and my heart breaks for any fan of his... coming across those words... I’m pretty confidant that Neil Young’s attitude on things changed in the years that followed, and I won’t be surprised if he’s already apologized... Young’s words coming to light from the past are views that some still carry today. In my way of thinking, they’ve always been the sick ones, not us." Read More

3.Goodbye For Now, Mom (Pam Decker, 1950-2022) (July 3)

Excerpt: “On the last day of June my mom continued her sleep, no longer bound by a body that had betrayed her. Her pain, in every way this life can deliver it, is over. Your work here is done, Mom. Thank you for your love and for fighting for me… See you again on the other side.” Read More

4. Messages From Mom and The Great Beyond (July 19)

Excerpt: "I’m welcoming my mother’s little messages for as long as she wants to send them, while also encouraging her to look over and guard some others that may need it more than me... she certainly did more than enough to make sure I’d be fine when she as here in the physical sense." Read More

5. 50... Pedro Zamora Would Have Turned 50 Years Old Today (March 1)

Excerpt: “When Ryan White passed in 1990, I wasn’t open about my status. My mom was devastated but I’d kept a healthy emotional distance from anyone else who was living with HIV, because they only reminded me of my own morbid countdown. Pedro was different. I bonded with him.” Read More

Honorable Mention (#6) 


Magnetic Couple (One HIV+, One HIV-) Mauled by Adorable Goats!

Last year I dealt with- and will continue to deal with- the passing of my mother. It’s been about six months now, but it feels longer.

One of the great honors of my life has been being able to share her story. After my humorous memoir was published in 2006, the most frequent comment I’d get was about what a badass my Mom was. Back when Gwenn and I were on the speaking circuit, people would approach me after our talk and gush over what a hero my mom was through my diagnosis and the challenges that it brought.

Mom was big on saying no one was perfect. She wasn’t and never claimed to be. But she was my hero. She fought to keep me in the game and was proud to see my adult life blossom, particularly in my ventures to raise awareness about HIV while trying to make people laugh at the same time.

The greatest gift my parents gave me was a sense of humor.

In mom’s absense, I hope to carry her best traits forward. I recognize some of her own struggles in myself, and just as my laughter honors hers, so too does my desire to be my best self. She overcame so much in her life. By comparison my life has seemed easy. And she worked so hard, especially in those early diagnosis days, to create that environment of calm around me, even as things were spiralling out of control.

As I embark on my first full year without her in this physical realm, I am convinced that the bond will remain until I “level up” myself. And I look forward to continuing to share her story, whether it’s an old tale of yesteryear or one of the peculiar ways that her spirit uses to pop in for a quick hello or a gentle (or not-so-gentle!) nudge. My heart and mind will remain open to those.

Thanks, as always, for reading along. Here’s to hoping that all of our 2023’s are filled with insight, love and tenderness for ourselves as well as our loved ones.

Positively Yours,