The Day I Should Have Died | Happy Re-birthday To Me

I consider myself a pretty luck man. Heck, I’d call myself blessed. I know the value of my life and continually appreciate it, no matter how ‘tough’ things may get. Today is my re-birthday. 12 years ago on September 15, 2001 I was given a wonderful gift. I had someone attempt to take my life away from me.

I’ll admit it. Before that fateful day, I was just as jaded, jagged and miserable as many other human beings who occupy this earth are. I was always pissed off at the world. I continually wanted to know when the universe would stop shitting on me. I bitched at everything and everyone. My temper roller-coastered like it was my full-time job. I had your typical bad luck, bad girlfriends, bad relationships, bad jobs, etc, etc. Yeah, I was a miserable ole cuss. I can’t say ‘positivity’ was part of my repertoire. I was going nowhere fast, and I just couldn’t seem to get a leg up. I was simply treading water.

Then someone tried to kill me. I blogged about it in 2008 on this very blog (hard to believe). Let me tell you a story (that I wrote many moons ago)…

It’s been 7 years.

This time of the year always has a special place in most of America’s hearts. September 11, 2001 is a date none of us will soon forget. It changed the face of our nation and impacted our world in a way none of us could have ever imagined. Emily (crzegrl) shared here views of how it impacted her.

At the risk of diminishing or making that day any less than it really was. This time of the year has a very different meaning for me. I do remember September 11th. I do remember what I was doing that day. I do remember how I felt and how the world around me changed. But it’s not what is in the forefront of my mind.

September 15, 2001

My Re-Birthday.

It’s been 7 years.

It was a Saturday. (Yes I remember it that well)

There was a time in my life when I was not active in healthcare (It was a short time). I had stepped away from the healthcare setting and returned to my career in retail. Retail had helped pay my way through college, and then it was the way to put food on the table after college was over. My career in healthcare wasn’t paying the bills, and retail was a better option (at the time).

It was a typical Saturday night. I was one of the midnight managers on duty. Part of my responsibility as a manager was to hold the night-shift meeting with the over-night employees.

This particular night we decided to have an open forum concerning the difficulties people may or may not be having with the current state of affairs. The terrorists attacks were affecting everyone, and we wanted to let our employees know we cared.

I can’t say I remember how it happened.

I can’t say I was prepared for it.

It happened in time ‘slices’.

I was talking with the over-night group of employees. It was me in front of approximately 20 others. Half-way through the meeting and in mid-sentence I can vaguely remember an ‘itching’ or ‘biting’ feeling on my neck.


It wasn’t anything out the ordinary. I chalked it up to one of the bodily aches or pains I have no explanation for. (Like when I get a shooting pain in my finger that comes a goes in a matter of 7 seconds)

It got more quiet. It was like I could only hear the fans of the air conditioning running. I guess the only way to explain it… is things seemed to slow down.. immensely. Like the slo-mo option on a VCR/DVD player.

I don’t know what happened next. Or should I say I don’t know which came first. The banshee-like shrieking screams or the shadow of a person coming out of my left peripheral vision. All I know is that it was a startling moment.

The Scream.

The Shadow.

And I reflexively look to my left.

I remember saying to my self, “Hmm, why is Jane (we’ll call her Jane for identity purposes) standing so close to me. She should be sitting out in the crowd with the rest of the group.”

She’s now advancing towards me. “What is she doing?”

Her left arm is raised in the air. I think she’s going to take a swing at me. So out of reflex, I block her left arm. I block her arm with my R arm and grab her swinging arm with my L hand. Then I grasp her swinging arm with both hands.

I can’t quite figure out why she’s trying to hit me?

Another handful of screams.

Through the tussle and wrestling of her arm I realize my hand is full of blood??? In fact I have blood on both my hands?

“OK. Who’s blood is this?”, I blurt out with a sense of sarcasm.

… ??

More screams.

… ??

Wait a minute.

What’s that in Jane’s hand?

Is that..?

No way.

Wholly SH#T. Jane has a knife in her hand.

“The blood is YOURS! She cut your throat. Your bleeding from your neck!!!!!!”, a voice from the crowd cries out hysterically.

Now, I’m no idiot. I know the inner workings of the human body. I’m pretty well versed in what anatomical structures are located in the neck.

I know I’m still breathing. I’m not chocking. Not having any trouble moving air.


At the same time Jane is tackled by a single employee from behind. Then another, then another. And then more. It takes close to 5 people to get her down.

I put my hand on my neck.. and sure enough … nothing but blood.

Yep. It’s a true story. I was attacked from behind with a swiss army knife by an employee of mine, in front of approximately 20 people. She sliced my neck almost from ear to ear.

Here are the finer points of the story:

- she used a very dull and old swiss army knife

- she did not use the blade side of the knife and drag it across my neck to cut me. She used the knife in a stabbing motion and scraped the tip of the knife across the length of my neck

- she never spent a night in jail. She had a psychiatric evaluation. Her medications were adjusted. And that’s the last thing I was told (Please don’t ask.. I don’t know what the heck happen concerning her lawful conviction)

- Yes, I have a Keloid scar that has taken 7 yrs to slowly diminish on my neck. (The intent of the ED physician was to use the smallest/thinnest suture possible so to NOT leave a scar, and it did the exact opposite)

-The only entertaining piece of all this was that when the 911 call was made. All the EMS arrived expecting to see a decapitated man. And I mean ALL of the EMS. For the small town I was in, I think I counted 4 Ambulances and 6 marked Police and 2 unmarked Police cars.

There isn’t a day that goes by that I don’t think about that day. It changed my life. We always whine and complain about some of the most ridiculous things in life that seem so very important at the time. Everything from being late for work, being stuck in traffic, having to wait in line in the grocery store, having a poor wait staff wait on you at the restaurant, or having to sit in coach for a 4hr flight… the list is endless. Everyone hates having a bad day.

I touched on my theory about life and how bad your day really was here.

I’m not perfect. I do have stress in my life. I do have those ‘Pull out your hair’ moments and those “all i wanna do is scream” moments. But I’m always grounded and reminded by my profession and by my past that maybe you and/or I not having THAT bad of a day.

September 15th is my Re-Birthday. I was given a second chance at life. For some strange reason, I survived that incident. I will never know why. I questioned it for a long time, and never got the answer I wanted until I realized there was no answer. I’m here. I’m staying here. I’m not going anywhere. And while I’m here, I’m making the most of my stay.

Here’s what scares me sometimes when I think about my attack.

As an employee for the retail store I worked for, each employee is issued a box cutter. The only reason I’m still here is because Jane had bad aim, and a dull swiss army knife.

What if she would have used the box cutter instead of her swiss army knife?


I don’t have bad days anymore.

Carpe Diem

Via Happy Re-Birthday To Me | My Strong Medicine

At the beginning of this summer we moved to a new city. With the move came new friends. When my face was still new, I had a friend comment on my ‘positivity’ and being ‘always happy’. I told her there was a story behind my obsessive passion for being happy, but that I’d it to her later. I plan on sharing this post with her (Thanks Allison).

This is the reason I’m always positive. Why I greet every morning with my “Gewwwwwwd morning”. I get to be here another day. 

Many great things have happened to me since that scary day.

I became a Registered Nurse, I met and married my soul mate, and most recently started working as an Acute Care Nurse Practitioner, a job I’m loving more and more each day.

I’m not too sure where I’d be today had I not gone ‘under the knife’ so-to-speak. I can admit that I wouldn’t have the abundance of happiness I possess now. What I do know is that I took a tragic, frightening and possibly life-paralyzing event and turned it into something positive. Positive for me, and hopefully positive for anyone who’s around me.

This might sound a bit cliche’… or it might sound a bit phony.. but I needed someone to try and steal my most prize possession (my life) for me to truly appreciate its merit. And for that, I couldn’t be happier.

Stay persistent at being consistent

This brings to light that stressing’ your body once in a great while has not benefit, and could quite possibly be detrimental to your health by increasing your risk of cardiovascular incidents.
The key here is to be consistent.

Amplify’d from

Sporadic Exercise, Even Sex, May Boost MI, Death Risk

Couch potatoes beware: Episodic bouts of physical or sexual activity may carry a risk of heart attack or sudden cardiac death, researchers reported.

But the risk drops with regular physical activity, according to Issa Dahabreh, MD, and Jessica Paulus, ScD, both of Tufts Medical Center in Boston.

“There is a link between episodic physical activity and sexual activity with the risk of heart attack and death from sudden cardiac events” within one or two hours after the episode, Paulus said in a video prepared for the journal.

The triggering effect of such episodes was muted for people who were more active on a regular basis, the researchers found.

They also cautioned that the findings should not be interpreted “as indicating a net harm of physical or sexual activity.”

Instead, they concluded, the results suggest that such exposures are associated with a “temporary short-term increase in the risk of acute cardiac events.”



At least he didn’t die of a heart attack

It’s ironic isn’t it? A horribly obese man, being the spokesperson for a restaurant that jokes at giving you a ‘heart attack’ due to the greasy-unhealthy-fat-ladened meals it serves dies at the age of 29.
No, he didn’t have a heart attack. He died from pneumonia.
I for one find that more saddening. An illness which no 29 year old should die from.
I’m only spit-balling here, but I’m willing to bet his weight and obese body habitus sure played a key role in his inability to recover from an illness that is for the most part not deadly. At least not nearly as deadly as heart attacks.
Hmm.. how did he get so obese?
It couldn’t have been the food he was eating right? He was just another innocent victim right?

Amplify’d from

575-pound Heart Attack Grill spokesman dies at 29

Blair River was a big guy with a big heart.

River, who stood 6-foot-8 and weighed about 575 pounds, gained a measure of fame in the past year as spokesman for the Heart Attack Grill, a Chandler, Ariz., restaurant that specializes in thick hamburgers and fries. He died on Tuesday at the age of 29.

The cause of death is currently unknown, but friends are speculating that it was the result of his contracting pneumonia after a bout with the flu.

Heart Attack Grill is an unabashedly unhealthy restaurant — the menu consists of huge burgers, milkshakes and fries cooked in lard — and having such a big man as a spokesman was part of its tongue in cheek “glorification of obesity.” But those who knew River said he was more than the larger-than-life caricature he portrayed in promoting the restaurant.

Restaurant founder Jon Basso said he got to know River, first as a customer then as the grill’s spokesman.

“Cynical people might think this (River’s death) is funny,” Basso said. “But people who knew him are crying their eyes out. There is a lot of mourning going on around here. You couldn’t have found a better person.”

River was a state heavyweight wrestling champion in 1999 as a senior at Payson High School and he went on to play football at Mesa Community College.

He lived in Mesa, Ariz., and worked as a financial adviser at the University of Phoenix.

“He was a nice guy, very energetic and full of life,” said Alex Arreola, a waitress at the grill. “He was always talking about his daughter and he always seemed to know the right thing to say to people.”

Basso said River was the “creative genius” behind the promotions and was always coming up with new ideas for spots for the restaurant. They were even planning to shoot a spot called, “Heart Attack Grill: The Musical.”

“Even if he was skinny we would have given him the job,” Basso said. “We would have just put a fat suit on him. He just had personality.”

Basso said they had to stop showing some of the ads featuring River on the video screens in the restaurant because they made some of the staff too emotional.

“We’re like a family here and he was part of our family,” Arreola said. “He will be missed. He’ll definitely be missed.”



Too Much Television? Bad For Your Health?


The researchers suggest this link between TV-time and early death could be partly due to the fact that sitting in front of the tube may take away from time a person might otherwise spend moving about, engaging in light activity, which has been shown to reduce the risk of developing certain biological indicators of cardiovascular disease.

Couch potatoes may have shorter lives – Diet and nutrition-

Seems that the rumors are true directly and indirectly. Are you surprised? Really? I’m pretty sure the information and the effects of a sedentary lifestyle on your health are not new, nor are they shocking.

Oh – and it applies to the chair sitting in front of your computer as well.

Get up.

Get moving.

Get healthy.

Any questions?

Milk Of Amnesia

Image Source:

OK folks let’s get something straight.

I know you’ve probably heard once or twice about Michael Jackson’s death and the involvement of the powerful sedative anesthesia drug Diprivan (Propofol). -Powerful sedative found in Michael Jackson’s home – Yahoo! News.

Here’s what’s disturbing and baffling.

This drug is not for home use. It delivered by intravenous infusion, you cannot take a Diprivan pill. It’s not for ANY use outside of the anesthesia or critical care medicine arena. It’s a potent, powerful and extremely dangerous drug used for light or heavy sedation that does cause amnesia, both Retrograde and Anterograde. Its use is extremely intricate, which requires a great deal of knowledge, skill and training. Using it involves greatly predictable effects and side effects which requires continuous vital sign monitoring.

I won’t describe all it’s avenue’s of use. I will however tell you what it’s not used for.

I’ll say this just once : IT IS NOT USED FOR INSOMNIA

The presence of this substance in ANYONE’S home, albeit a celebrity, speaks volumes of questionable action.

My sympathies for any and all who are involved in this horrible scene.

Carpe Diem

Improved Physical Fitness Lowers Your Risk of Death

Yes, you read that right. Death. All-cause death from coronary heart disease and cardiovascular disease. There is a new study that suggests increasing your cardio respiratory fitness can lower your risk of death, plain and simple.

Physical fitness is typically expressed as cardio respiratory fitness (CRF) and is assessed by exercise tolerance testing…

Compared with participants with high CRF, those with low CRF had a 70 percent higher risk for all-cause death and a 56 percent higher risk for CHD/CVD events

It doesn’t get any simpler than that folks. Do you want to live longer? Or die sooner?

So once again I ask you, why are you not exercising to improve your level of fitness?

Carpe Diem