Every morning, I wake up and wish this has all been a dream.
Literally, every single morning.
My first thought, every morning, is to wish I am waking up the morning before I crossed that line of propriety with my former student; just go to school, teach my classes, and when she walked into my classroom that day, I would know exactly what not to do.
That is my wish — every day — but it never comes true.
A few days ago, regarding an interview I gave to the Wichita Eagle, several internet commenters made the statement, “He’s just sorry he got caught.” But the truth is, I’m not sorry I got caught, I’m glad I got caught. I needed to get caught. My life was out of control, and I was living the life of a horrid human being (though, to be honest, after moving out of Wichita, my life was on a considerable upswing — ironic — but for all I know, that was just a peak before another valley).
So, in all honesty, I’m glad I got caught.
Here, let me say that again: I am glad I got caught!
The life I live now is barely a shadow of who I was when I was living in the depths of immorality. I suppose I just wish I could have made those changes before I hurt so many people. And that’s why I wish, every morning, I could wake up the morning before I crossed that line; I’d shake my head and feel like it was the longest and most realistic dream (or nightmare) ever, but I would certainly remember the journey.
Obviously, that hasn’t happened, and I know it won’t — but I will continue to wish. And then, every morning, I will get out of bed and live another day not being the sick bastard I was nearly a decade ago, trying to find a cure for an epidemic.
Granted, this isn’t Quantum Leap and I can’t “put right what once went wrong,” but as long as there is air in my lungs, I will use it to shout my message — condemning and curing the epidemic to which I tragically contributed.
Every morning, I wake up to make a difference..