So here we are again, December 31. Seemingly just another Wednesday, but for a Westerner like myself it was also potentially a day of choices and transformation. A day when one can decide to take control of one’s life; a day when good habits can emerge and bad habits can die hard.
At this time a year ago I was traveling in South America, visiting old friends and making new ones. I had a hot fling with another traveler that was staying at my hostel. It was like a romance novel. Two individuals from opposite sides of the world who, despite language barriers and jealous friends, had undeniable chemistry that lasted for the duration of the trip. At the time I didn’t tell him about my herpes. We had such a connection – both physically and intellectually – and after several months in the US of lust-less dating and absolutely no sex, I just couldn’t pass up such a sexy opportunity. We used condoms…mostly…but I would be lying if I said I didn’t put him at risk of contracting herpes. We kept in touch online and a few months later, after the guilt finally got to me, I told him I had herpes and suggested he get tested. He wasn’t mad, and pretty much blew it off, but that is one scenario I know I will never find myself in again. Not only did I put him at risk (not to mention the other women he’s been with since me, considering he doesn’t think he needs to be tested), but I put myself at risk for other diseases as well. It was irresponsible and foolish. Besides the memories and the transient pleasure, it was really a lose-lose situation.
This year will be different. Yes, I’ve decided to turn over a new leaf. In 2009 I will value health, honesty, and genuine relationships, of any sort, above all else. What better way to realize this goal than to write it out and post it online for all to see? Maybe it will inspire some of you to write your own resolutions and share.
Here they are, my 2009 resolutions (well, not all of them, just the ones relevant to this site) in no particular order:
- I resolve to abstain from all sex (oral and vaginal) until notifying my partner that I have genital herpes.
- I resolve to abstain from all sex until I know the sexual health and history of my partner.
- I resolve to always use condoms as long as I’m not in a serious, committed relationship.
- I resolve to not have any one-night stands.
- I resolve to not get so emotionally attached to people I’m dating.
- I resolve to exercise at least 3 times a week.
- I resolve to not drink alcoholic and caffeinated beverages any more than 3 days a week, and to cut back on sugar and processed foods.
So there they are for the world to see. Some of these I’m proud to say I’ve already started to tackle. Others will be more difficult. I also know I will see a gynecologist at least once this year for a pap smear (and testing, if necessary) but don’t need to make that a resolution as I’ve consistently done it since I was a teenager. But for those of you who don’t see a doctor regularly, I recommend you make a point of going and getting tested each time you have a new partner or at least once a year.
What are your resolutions?
Published On: January 04, 2009