I always knew I was different. When I was a teenager I was afraid to go to the counter at McDonalds and place an order for fear I would get it wrong or they would laugh at me. Humor became the perfect mask. If I could make people laugh they would not see my faults. I fell in love with radio. That “mystery man” behind the mic that would talk to me, I wanted, and got, that life. Although I was very successful I was running from an illness and eventually I crashed in February of 2011.
I have OCD, am bi-polar, suffer from depression and severe social anxiety disorder. I have been in therapy for nine years and my doctor saved my life. Depression is not just “being in a bad mood.” It’s a feeling of all other options running out and desperation. It makes suicide seem logical (as illogical as that may seem). So how did I do my job, be successful at it, and hide it from everyone? It started with alcohol. It gave me the courage to walk in a room, size people up, and own it. At an event I would continue to drink to feed the monster that wanted to come out. When that wasn’t enough I turned to drugs. Self medicating was the way I solved my problems before I found help. I was never a druggie in high school or college or in my early adult life but I can honestly say I became an addict. I have learned that addiction is a terrible disease and through the help of my therapist he has taught me how to control it and not let it control me.
I also found out that it’s okay to be scared. I don’t have all the answers to the tribulations we face in life but in 2015 I was in a coma for six days because I almost let that monster inside of me win. That was rock bottom for me. For the past seven years I have concentrated on fixing myself. For some reason God has let me survive to fulfill a specific mission that I have yet to discover. I have been blessed to actually see what awaits us. That first night in my coma the doctors were sure I would not see the morning. I truly am someone that got a second chance and that, among other reasons, is why I have decided to go home to Cleveland. It is my sincere hope that others that may have these feelings know they are not alone. My mom says I tell everyone everything and have no filter. She is correct but no one can appreciate the success without tasting the failure. Every new day is a blessing and there is no guarantee. Thank you for reading this and remember “never give up.”
I am ashamed. I am weak. I am an underachiever in life. Let me explain and perhaps you can relate. The other day I saw a motorcycle friend of mine and I was shocked to see him wheel towards me in a chair. His leg was missing below the leg and all I could muster was “What the hell?” I found out he was in an accident that was not his fault that caused him to be life flighted to a hospital where he was lucky to be alive but had to have his leg amputated at the knee.
Life can change in an instant. I have a tendency to be a “woe is me” person and worry about things that don’t matter. What blew me away was his attitude. He wasn’t bitter. He wasn’t angry. He was positive. His words to me were “I can’t wait to get my prosthetic leg so I can ride again.” I was speechless. If this was me I would be blaming the world and be bitter in life. I don’t think he realized what an angel he was to me. It was yet another wake up call to me that I constantly ignore. Attitude is everything. Life is short. Make it count. Thanks for reading.
Danny tells more stories about his stay in the hospital and brush with death. You’ll never believe what a woman was trying on at a Wal-Mart. Further proof you should never take public transportation. Danny tears into Khole Kardashian and Lamar Odom for getting back together and a great quote from Ray Rice that provides endless comedy.
I went for a walk of a mile and a half today. This was the first time I walked more than twenty yards at once since September 20, 2015. Cliff note version for those of you not aware: Had pneumonia, lead to a heart block, heart rate dropped to twenty-two, died and came back, saw heaven, begged for a second chance, had a pacemaker installed and here I sit today trying to get back on track. I am a changed person. Some have called it a spiritual awakening. I’m not sure what it was but I do know I’m grateful and that I have a specific purpose. That will come to me through prayer. More details can be found HERE.
There were some other things that happened during my hospital stay that substantiated that what happened was for a reason. I like to give people nicknames. One of my doctor’s at Wellington Regional was quite young. I called him Doogie Howzer. He stopped in the one day to see how I was feeling. I told him my story of dying and coming back and he was hanging on my every word. He then took my hand, squeezed it and said “You must understand that you have returned for a reason. I have no doubt that you will do great things. You must be patient and trust in God. He will show you the way.” This freaked me out. The feeling in the room was more than intense. He made me feel like his presence in my room was more than just medical it was like he was a spiritual messenger. Some of you may say “You were on drugs” but I wasn’t. The only time I was on drugs that affected the mind was when I had my permanent pacemaker installed.
Another time at Wellington Regional one of the doctors that saved my life dropped by. He insisted I call him “Bo Bo.” We were talking about what happened and what I saw before they brought me back. He reached into his pocket and pulled out a ring. The ring has a cross on it and ten silver “beads.” It’s a mini-rosary and the beads are for “Hail Mary’s.” He insisted I take the ring and then he explained how he volunteers with the Knights of Columbus and invited me to join him when I get to feeling better. I have to be honest. These events were giving me the chills. I was never super-religious. I believed in the Golden Rule and a Supreme Being. There wasn’t a doubt in my mind at this point that there is so much more waiting for us.
I was transferred to JFK Medical Center for the installation of my pacemaker. The night before I was released I was transferred out of ICU to a regular room. I had a male Asian nurse. His name was June. He would be off duty at 7AM and around 5AM that morning he came in to run some tests. I gave him the cliff note version of what happened to me and then he looked at me and said “You are back for a reason.” He then went on to say every answer you are looking for can be found in the Bible. He was particularly fond of Revelation and how it applies to things that are happening in the world today. He told me to just trust in God and you will find your way to your purpose and return to productivity. At this point I think I said to myself and God “I get it. Let’s do this.”
Again let me stress that I am not going to be a bible thumper that comes knocking on your door or someone dragging a cross to a street corner so I can scream from scripture. I still have my cutting, politically incorrect and caustic sense of humor in fact it’s probably stronger and more focused than ever before. I share these extra details with you so that you may better understand what I went through and how it wasn’t a “coincidence.”
Enjoy your day and the rest of your weekend. I am working on another podcast I hope to have posted by the end of tomorrow. Thanks again for your time in reading my blog.