I’m sitting in my room at my parents house on my computer and I’m thinking about an old friend. He lived down the street from me and we would hang out everyday. He was part of the group of “cool skater boys” that I associated with. He was always a little shit head, but whenever anyone would say anything mean about me or to me, he would stand up for me. He always would call me his little sister, it made me feel really special. As we grew up, we took separate paths. He started hanging out with much older guys and started doing a lot of drugs. While I made my own dumb decisions. Last year, soon after I moved to San Diego, he messaged me on Facebook telling me he had recently moved to San Diego with his parents and wanted to catch up. We ended up going to lunch and having a really nice time. He was doing really well for himself and things were starting to look up for him. Very soon after that, I was on Facebook, only to find out that due to a extremely severe asthma attack, he was in a coma. It’s been 9 or so months that he’s been in this coma. I went on his Facebook to write him a little post and I read one from his mom, saying how much she misses him. I cannot imagine what his family is going through. It’s so baffling to think, this little boy that was always protecting me and was doing something great with his life, has lost all consciousness and may never gain it back. I’m 19 years old and have already lost 2 close friends at a very young age. To think of losing another is heart wrenching. We may not have been close at the very end but he always has had a special place in my heart. I hope so much that he is able to recover soon.

Tonight, I was also looking at a blog, likeafieldmouse. I’ve always greatly enjoyed all of the art he posts and the interesting posts he writes himself. Tonight, he wrote one about another blogger named CJ. It turns out that both of these bloggers are battling brain cancer and have been shot, leaving them partially blind. Yet, some how they stay so positive and find beauty in life and art. 

I personally think I would give up. I fail a test and all of the sudden I have lost all faith in living.

Here I am, a student at a university with a job, an internship and perfect health and yet I still have time to complain about my life. So very often I find it hard to stay positive, thinking I have it so hard, when in reality I could be dealing with situations that are so much more serious. I am so lucky to have everything that I have. My family, my friends, my education, my health, my body, my job, my opportunities. 

Life can be lost so quickly, so I might as well enjoy the amazing one that I have.

I am a very very lucky girl. Sometimes I need to remind myself of that.

  • Sonata for Cello and Piano in G minor, Op. 19: III. Andante
  • Jascha Heifetz, Emanuel Bay
Play

CJ, this may not be to your taste, we’ve never really talked about music, but it’s one of my default pieces of music I turn to, not to make me “happy” or cheer me up, but just to sit with when I’m having one of those defeated nights. 

So, this again is for you.

Sergei Rachmaninoff - Andante in G Minor, Op. 19, Jascha Heifetz, violin

CJ

Dear folks, 

A few months back I had the pleasure of “meeting” a blogger who ran a beautiful art/photography blog that included his own work.

It turned out he was dealing with much of the same medical troubles I was dealing with, and we decided to move our chats off Tumblr. 

We swapped stories for a bit, and in reading his emails, I sometimes had to remind myself that I wasn’t reading my own life.

I found myself more than once open-mouthed and shaking my head in amazement at how uncannily similar—almost identical—our histories are, most amazingly with regard to a particular non-medical and less-than-delightful event in our recent pasts (about which he’s much more open than I have the courage to be, and as a result of which events we were each left partially blind, he in 2008, I in 2011—I lost my peripheral vision, CJ lost an actual eye and now wears a prosthetic.)

To my dismay, he abruptly deactivated his blog after a nasty harassment spell simultaneously on Tumblr and FB. 

NOW HE’S BACK

and he’s fighting brain cancer with everything he’s got.

Until I got to know CJ, I thought I was an optimist; I thought I was a pretty strong guy with a pretty decent heart. But his optimism and strength and heart have put me and mine to absolute shame. 

I hope you’ll check his blog out and give him a follow. He’s a talented artist and a gentleman, a generous spirit and a true inspiration to me and, no doubt, to everyone in his life. 

Welcome back, CJ. 

~Alec

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