It’s funny: when you are 18 or 19, you never think that anything can bring you down. Nothing can stop you. You are invincible. Death has no meaning (except for those who have left us in its wake and tore our hearts asunder). We think we are Gods; Time-Lords, immortal…and yet we are not. We are simply Human Beings who think that just because we are young nothing can happen to us outside of an accident. When I was 19, that was just my mid set. I partied for days on end; went on road trips to see bands (Peter Gabriel and the Pat Metheny Group are two that come to mind) and to see my favorite city in the world, Montreal. I went to see friends at other colleges and stayed for days on end. I did 24-hour Term Papers (which I was the MASTER at…research, footnoted, written, typed and proofed in one day. Never got a grade below a “B”). I drank like a fish and paid the price hang over wise and almost with my life on more than one occasion. In short, I was Iron Man, Captain America, and the Incredible Hulk all rolled into one and nothing was going to touch me.
Then we had 9/11, the intervening years of uncertainty and horror from PTSD. A rocky marriage (hey, this shit happens after 20 years together), PTSD, Bi Polar Disorder, degenerating discs, and now potentially the most frightening words you don’t ever want to hear. Think of what those words are, and I don’t even have to write them out for you. For the past several years I have been exhibiting signs (but not all at the same time, which is why this threw Doctors off) of some of the same diseases that Ground Zero workers were getting. I was exposed to the cloud, I worked there for another two years…and now it caught up with me. Every Captain America has his Red Skull, Iron Man his Baron Zemo, Incredible Hulk General Thunderbolt Ross. I am not Superman, but I may have been hit my kryptonite.
Two additional small growths were found on my lung. They do not know whether or not it is definitely cancer…they only know I need a biopsy, and fast.
And yes, I am scared shitless. What else can you be at this point except numb as well. Honestly, I’m having a hard time processing this except for one thing. Despite the fact I’ve been a long time smoker (which is the first suspect, and what can I say about that except for its validation), 50 year old men don’t slowly have their bones fall apart and growths pop up in a two year time frame like this. There was no warning signs, no signals in my bloodwork or body scan. Nothing. This was found because my Doctor (who I see for pain management as well as overall health) knows I’m a 9/11 Survivor. Knows to look for certain things that a lot of the medical community don’t because he has several patients in the same boat…and it all started with an annual chest x-ray. The plus side is that it appears nothing has spread to lymph nodes, etc. I can only make one assumption that every figure in Government will deny because they have already insulated themselves against lawsuits:
THEY TOLD US THE AIR WAS SAFE.
And because of that, I may very well be dying with two young girls who need their daddy. And because of that thousands of others may have the same issues. And I know one of the purposes in my life is this: these bastards let it happen to us, told us it was safe to go back and work, and now thousands of families are affected. Be forewarned, Washington…there will come a day when I’m going to be riding in on a white horse and all hell will be riding behind me. And it will be the thousands of us you killed because you did not protect us on 9/11 and because you said it was safe. Chernobyl was safe for a while too; at least the Soviets cleared it all out. The Japanese need a way to “save face” so they let people die while they figure it out about how to stop any more contamination from that damaged reactor. Maybe Godzilla can stop them before it hits them on the head that just maybe we mutated a lizard…OOPS!
They say to know what you write about…I guess I’m about to get a whole new area of expertise.