"Your task is not to seek for love, but merely to seek and find all the barriers within yourself that you have built against it. " Rumi
So someone wrote me recently to take me to task about a few things. One concern she had was my use of the word “dying” instead of “living with”. Fair enough. We heard that a lot in the 80s with AIDS. Just one problem. We are all dying. Life is a terminal condition and being in touch with that inevitability has its upside. Just ask Buddhists who meditate on their own deaths. Now I haven’t wasted time on TV since 97, but there were lots of other time sucks in my life. Knowing I have a fatal illness makes me think hard about what I want to do. I think that’s a good thing. Think about it: if you knew your time on this planet was limited would you sit at home watching TV or get the hell out there and live some life? I respect people that don’t want to believe they will die, that don’t want to contemplate any other realm than this one and I get it, believe me I do. I love life. But I also love the truth.
The other thing this person was upset about was the auction of the picture of my ass. Now I bet a lot of readers don’t think that’s the greatest idea either but they realize that we all have our way of traveling through this world and if no one is hurt, why expect people to live just like you do? It would be boring if we all auctioned our ass and I wouldn’t dream of imposing it on other ALS patients. Likewise, I wouldn’t take someone to task if they did a BINGO fundraiser and accuse them of making ALS patients look as dull as dirt. That perspective is mine alone. Likewise, BINGO-oriented people should let me do my thing.
Finally, this well-intentioned lady read the blog and thought I was presenting myself as a “victim.” Say what? I am alive, living fiercely, loving intensely, laughing loud and drinking it all in. I am making music, making whoopee, making blogs and making plans. I am drunk with love for this beautiful, flawed, silly, tragic, hilarious world and I’m damned proud of how I’m coping. I love so many people -even this woman who may be judgmental and a bit of a buzz kill but she has also lived with ALS for a long time and that makes her very courageous and worthy of my love in my book (though I don’t want to meet her as she suggests.)
I’m not here to be the spokesmodel for ALS. I don’t write this blog to inspire the ALS community or anyone for that matter. I write it because I’m an artist and we take the events of our lives and try to make sense of them by turning them into something. I write it because I had some bad luck and I’m struggling to understand it while accepting that I can’t. I write it because I think people need to read about flawed and funny people. Yes, it’s got a lot to do with ALS – it’s only been 9 months – give me time – but more than that, I want to write about, celebrate, sing about, BE IN life. I am Carla - I am NOT ALS.
This lady also asked me to think about my son. I do. Every damned day. And I am setting the best example for him I know how. I am showing him that people can mess up and be loved, can endure hardship and laugh themselves stupid, can lose it all and gain more.
So to those of you who write your encouraging and loving comments – whether you are a friend or a stranger, I love you and please don't write angry blog comments to this lady - she thinks she's doing the right thing. For those of you who don’t like what I have to say or how I’m living up in this bitch, I might still love you but implore you: don’t read the blog then you’ll be happy and I’ll be happy.
As for me, I am going to keep snogging and mooning and telling evil jokes and loving and laughing and one day I’ll get cremated in a tight red dress, pushup bra and fuckme pumps and a mischievous grin on my face.