A Sad Anniversary
Freddie Mercury died 22 years ago today. He was a lover of life, a singer of songs. He was one of a kind, an inspiration, a true artist. Today is an anniversary I share with many people around the world. I get that. I know that doesn’t make my grief any stronger or any more poignant than anyone else’s. I miss him every day, but it is November 24 that reminds me most of what the world has lost.
No, I never met him. Never saw him live in concert. Never saw him from afar. Never really knew he was alive until he was gone. I was in ninth grade when he passed, and I swear, those two days, the 23rd when he issued the press release stating he had AIDS, and the 24th when they announced his death, are flashbulb memories for me. I remember them better than prom that year (I went with a friend’s brother), more often than my freshman school courses, more vivid than making the basketball cheer-leading squad.
I owe my life to Freddie Mercury. He gave me seven months of hope that I would not be HIV Positive. As I said earlier in this blog, I prayed that I would live, and my prayer was granted. Freddie is the reason I lived long enough to get tested. Mental illness and suicide run in my family, and if I didn’t have Freddie to pray to at night, I may not have made it. I love him for that.
I read books about Freddie before I knew M/M existed. I imagined the things that many M/M writers write about, based on Freddie’s escapades. I probably over-fantasized the happy ending of his relationship with Jim Hutton. I want to believe that they are together in their own corner of Heaven. I want that for them.
Yes, Freddie is the main reason I write M/M romance. Not because I want him, or want to be him, but because I want him to live on, in more than songs. Freddie knew how to live, and he knew how to love, and he knew about friendship. He died from a horrible disease that took him from us too soon. I hear his voice in my head sometimes, telling me what to write. Call me crazy, and I’ll admit it readily. That doesn’t mean it’s not true. His words and my fingers (on the keyboard, pervs) to your eyes. It’s a kind of magic. It’s also my tribute to him. Every word. Every friendship. Every love affair.
I promised I would give him everything I had, and I intend to keep that promise.