I think I’ve led some people to think that I’ve been playing it completely cool the past few months despite what’s been going on. But if you saw me a couple nights ago, you’d know that sometimes the negative emotions just burst out all at once. I’ve barely been able to sleep lately, I’ve been in a lot of pain, and I dunno, stuff. Just a lot of stuff going on. And I was handling it all pretty well, until I lost my wallet. After searching in a couple locations to no avail, I almost fell on my back while climbing into my dad’s Jeep. Just BANG, my emotions exploded. I shot off, stormed away from the jeep and my parents without my oxygen and just growled and grumbled, fists all balled up. Then I climbed back into the Jeep and had a good cry.
It wasn’t that I’d have to replace my IDs and bank cards, or that it was a really dope Boba Fett-themed wallet. I just had so many memories tucked into the little pockets. A letter from Kristina I carried for three years, a “Be Brave” stone, movie tickets from dates, business cards from my favorite interviews. Stuff like that. I’m a bit of a hoarder, able to attach sentimentality to a crumb. In a time where everything seems unfamiliar, losing a treasure hoard of memories in a single night was just too much for my fragile state.
In the seat of the Jeep, all I could think about were these things I’ve been losing: hundreds of books, boxes of childhood toys, Hawaii, papers from school (hey, I said I could feel sentimentality for anything), stuff like that. Heck, I’m even losing my lungs. Sure, they’re falling apart and have been the source of loads of pain, but they’re my lungs. It’s not like cutting hair. I’m getting rid of organs I’ve carried with me since the OG days in my mom’s tummy. I’ve fought so hard to support them, keep them running, and now I’m plotting to have an affair with a pair of lungs I’ve never even met. I hope they understand. It’s not you, lungs. It’s me. No, it is you. I just feel like you’re holding me back and maybe I should see other lungs. Please understand.
Oh yeah, I also like to personify things. And I’m still really tired. *Large gulp of coffee.*
Anyway. I suddenly thought back to my own words to the social worker during my transplant interview. I told her that it seems a lot of people think of their transplant as an extension on their life. I would rather think of it as a reset button. I’m in a brand new place, I’ll be able to do things I haven’t done since middle school, I just graduated from college, I won’t have cystic fibrosis in my lungs anymore. I can be a new man. It’s not a new chapter in my life, it’s more like one of those Marvel comic series reboots.
So why am I so unwilling to let go of the past? While I fully intend to “transplant” Kristina, my family, and friends into my new life, everything else is just stuff. And the Bible says stuff on Earth just turns to dust, right? So those old books, that wallet and its treasures, those toys, those lungs (sorry!) are all just going to be dust to me once I move into the, uh, Marvel comic series reboot of my life. I’ll spare the dust thing for Hawaii — my friends still need some islands to live on.
So farewell, Boba Fett-themed wallet! I hope whoever finds you, I mean “it,” uses the $1 inside to buy a can of soda, then relaxes to a nice book bought with the Barnes and Noble gift card. Oh, and don’t read Kristina’s letter. That’s private.
P.S. Been in California for a month and a day so far! Still loving it.