I Love You Lungs

I love my lungs, not just because they bring in oxygen and send out CO2, but because they are working hard to keep me alive and to repair themselves from the abuse I was subjecting them to.

It was never personal, I wasn’t setting out to hurt them, I just was.

They are serving me well and over the last few weeks I’ve been clearing out a lot of stuff that I don’t recall breathing in. There’s no way I would sit down and inhale this black stuff that I’ve been coughing out if it presented itself to me as the black stuff in the first place. But it presented itself as a feeling of decreased tension, anxiety, stress, and the cessation of withdrawal symptoms; which are easy to consider positives. Now, a few weeks out, it’s very clear that there was NOTHING positive about them. Withdrawal from poison is a good thing because it means you are healing.

It is kind of shocking though. Some report that you can be clearing the nastiness for months, others claim that nothing ever came-out. I’m somewhere in the middle. Most of my coughing has stopped, but when the shower is really hot or I’m cooking a bunch of food and the humidity in the kitchen is high, I get my cough on and lumps or strains of black come out. I look at them and imagine what my lungs will look like in a few months and years.

For someone who presented themselves as giving a crap about how they looked, I sure didn’t pay much attention to keeping the lungs a nice beautiful pink.

Welcoming New Canadians

Last night, when I got home from teaching class, I saw that Mariam Makhniashvili’s body had been identified and that the police believe that she was not murdered. It appears that she feel to her death from a hwy 401 overpass above Young street.

Mariam was a new Canadian who didn’t have a lot of friends and who loved to read. She was a quiet 17 year old who mostly kept to herself. She parted ways with her brother at their school on September 14th 2009 and wasn’t seen alive again.

I don’t know anything about her other than what is being reported, but some of the information seems to resonate with me. Our family moved to Canada when I was 9 and almost immediately I was an outsider. I did make friends fairly quickly but found that many of the would turn on me or simply just stop talking to me. As a young person you are ill-equipped to make the call that their behavior says more about their past than it did about my present so you internalize it. I was the immigrant freak, who spoke funny and was the brunt of the jokes when the class bully was feeling small from whatever living hell he was going through.

I thought about jumping, a lot.

I never did and instead felt anxious and sort of went into myself finding the evidence to validate that I wasn’t the same as everyone else. Again, a child will do these things when because their brain doesn’t process information as effectively or in the same way as an adult.

Children are important and they are worth being nice to. The waste of one life is too many.

Rest in peace Mariam.