“Hey HIV,” I told HIV as I sensed loneliness slowly spreading to him like a virus. Or a prion. In a way there is guilt, for proliferating this infernal sense of irrational loneliness in the callroom. The thing with loneliness is that it’s something very personal, something that happens within you (wow para na tong high school essay), and as a consequence, very inconsequential. You can easily forget about it, distract yourself from it, and it won’t breed anything. It won’t save people from disease, but it won’t kill anyone either. Unless it’s pathologic and you’d want to stick your head in an oven ala Sylvia Plath.
So what I told HIV: Hey HIV, remember back before residency started, we were asked in a group activity what one word would describe us and you described yourself as such: “I’m happy. I’m well-fed.”
And I can distinctly recall that at the moment that HIV was operationalizing his state of being happy and well-fed he did indeed looked as if he had just had a very hearty meal. “Ang galing ng memory mo sa mga bagay na ganito,” Fulet Esplana said. I can also recall how Fulet Esplana described herself, and I reminded her of this during one of her more toxic and infuriated phases. Fulet described herself as “Patient. I’m one of the most patient people I know.”
Yes, I recall these sorts of things. What people said at certain periods, how they looked like, how they described themselves. Which is why there is no space left for the things that actually need memorization, such as stuff that are needed for medical training and patient care. I cannot quote Harrison’s, but I can quote what Djana said during one morning endorsements a few months back: It’s not very polite to check your Facebook while someone is endorsing in front!!!
Barbara Gordon, formerly Batgirl, now Oracle, is the one true eidetic. In one issue she bemoans this curse of having the ability to remember everything she has experienced. Because in as much as she could recall loads of information, and her experiences, and her joy, she could also never forget the pains and sufferings and prejudices and such. Because indeed, there is no limit to finding curses in everything.