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Mental Health: take care of yourself (a cautionary tale)


bunnyman666
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I know a few of you are groaning seeing my name. Please kindly leave this thread if you feel this way.

As many of you know, I have had many challenges with my health starting four years ago. I left hospital with less of me than I started off with. I have had four surgeries *thus far* dealing with this. There could be more, as this is a war. My J-pouch could go south. The pain in the bum region is REAL. Once you don’t have a colon to mellow things out, eating a chicken pot pie has the same effect as drinking a bottle of hot sauce...

The mental health aspect had been ignored. In essence, stress at work was the main contributor to the loss of my colon. I never addressed that part. I had contemplated suicide several times because I could not get a different job. Spotty availability of the one thing I love most (playing hockey) did not help. I could not handle the stress of work, so my shrink took me out. 

My point is NOT for ANYONE to say “that poor little bunnyman. All that he has been through.” The point I am trying to make is that if things are truly on the dark side for you, don’t ignore it and wait until you are in crisis like I did. I never dealt with the mental strain having a very messy colostomy had on my psyche. I never dealt with having all but 1/2” of my colon removed. The positive of that? Colonoscopy takes five minutes now, but I bite HARD into the examination table whilst she does it.

Mods: move or delete as necessary. 

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Hey man

It’s  good to see you on here again. I always found you to be a entertaining fella. The  mental toll can be very difficult on a person. I had major medical issues when I was born 41 years ago tomorrow. I lived with being different my entire life. Most have no idea. I’ve gone through bad stretches when I was younger. I’d say damn I just wish I was normal.  As I’ve gotten older I’ve done a good job ( at least I think I did) of letting it go, embracing life as I have it and enjoy it. 
 

My favorite song to this day is Alive by Pearl Jam.  The “I’m still alive” always stuck with me. 
 

Best wishes Doug. 

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14 minutes ago, Mike24 said:

Hey man

It’s  good to see you on here again. I always found you to be a entertaining fella. The  mental toll can be very difficult on a person. I had major medical issues when I was born 41 years ago tomorrow. I lived with being different my entire life. Most have no idea. I’ve gone through bad stretches when I was younger. I’d say damn I just wish I was normal.  As I’ve gotten older I’ve done a good job ( at least I think I did) of letting it go, embracing life as I have it and enjoy it. 
 

My favorite song to this day is Alive by Pearl Jam.  The “I’m still alive” always stuck with me. 
 

Best wishes Doug. 

I appreciate that.

Mental health is a multi-faceted thing. Is how you handle stress a defence mechanism from when you were young? How did your parents handle stress? What triggers you most?

I am admittedly on the frontier region of this. I tried a psychologist years back and it made me worse. I wrote off the ENTIRE mental health profession. Last year whilst working at home, I was dealing with egotistical sales people, deadlines, systems failures and other maladies. So I had asked a friend about a shrink.

He tried writing me off of work several times. I have a hockey player’s mentality: a few drops of super glue, some strong tape and get out for the next shift. 

Hopefully, I will possess the tools to let it go. Thanks for the kind words.  

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Just knowing I was different was stress enough. As I got older pre teen teenage years I’d be put in situations where my big secret could be on display. (Without going into a ton of detail. A massive and unsightly scar that pretty much runs my entire torso oh and I have no belly button). I was picked on by a lot of a holes.  So largely I’d just withdraw from a lot of social situations.  My parents were just always like it’s no big deal. In my head I’d always say easy for you to say.  Teenage years can I honestly say I’d have thoughts of taking my life? Yes. Wasn’t until my sophomore year my mindset was changed for me. A friend of mine passed away suddenly from a heart condition he had and by all accounts no longer an issue.  He was a fun loving dude funny like you, push teachers to the edge.  Poof one Monday he was just gone. It was perspective. 
 

My senior year another buddy we were polar opposites. But somehow became friends he had to move away jr year. But came back weeks before graduation. I saw him at a local pizza place where my then GF lived. Big smile big hug. Hey Mike I’m back awesome man.  About a week later he took his own life.  Unbelievable there was nothing for me to think that he would do that.   I still can’t to this day.  

I realized I have to stop beating myself up for a medical mistake that I can’t control.  I can control my days. I can laugh , I can be happy. I’ll just ride the wave that is life.  Because I’m still Alive.  

I don’t talk about my situation much , hell family members of my wife and friends that I’ve made have no idea ppl I’ve known for 18 years.  

Im at peace and the last nail in the coffin of any poor Mike that loomed was put to bed this past December when close friends of my wife and I had their second child unfortunately he was born with a very rare genetic issue. They were crushed. He told me his sons long term out outlook and yes they be going to be challenges . So I opened up about my situation. He’s reacted in disbelief at first. Floored to a degree.   I believe it helped them. But it was fan friggin tastic for me.  I was able to use this thing that at times ate me up as a tale of hope and understanding. Never in a million lifetimes would I thought I’d live that moment.  Life can be amazing at times. That day I killed that beast (took 40 years) 

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16 minutes ago, coopaloop1234 said:

Glad you're back Dumpy, err, Bunnyman.

Here's hoping you stick around and continue the Pooper line. 👍

Ha! 

Dumpy lives down the street from me. He was my T-shirt shop assistant. I know some of you super-sleuths thought they had caught me using another alias...

Dumpy is in the pic getting dressed:

441A13ED-9512-40E4-8DE6-4AB627FBE401.jpeg.9e3147a01e9ae0f4d9e3995ff8fa9fd0.jpeg

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21 minutes ago, bunnyman666 said:

Ha! 

Dumpy lives down the street from me. He was my T-shirt shop assistant. I know some of you super-sleuths thought they had caught me using another alias...

Dumpy is in the pic getting dressed:

441A13ED-9512-40E4-8DE6-4AB627FBE401.jpeg.9e3147a01e9ae0f4d9e3995ff8fa9fd0.jpeg

Considering we don't know what you look like, I'm still going to stoke the conspiracy fires. ;)

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1 hour ago, coopaloop1234 said:

Considering we don't know what you look like, I'm still going to stoke the conspiracy fires. ;)

I live a life of mystery.

My mullet was called “sick” by a 16 year old if that helps.

 

Let me add something else: I could be Dumpy, you could be Dumpy, the goal net bloke could be Dumpy. I was nicknamed “Uncle Dumpy”. So we all could be Dumpy.

Pooper line lives on:

8E52BCD3-BA16-4751-A2EB-D662D2CEABF0.thumb.jpeg.e05c9d55b19ed4d0ee3e877e9f95e773.jpeg

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bunnyman666, great to have you back.  I have always enjoyed your posts and comments on goalie forums. While you are handling some serious stuff physically and mentally, you can count on the support and typical goalie comments from us, whether you like it or not. Your history suggests that you can both dish and take some hits.  Good on ya' Pal.

One year before COVID-19 I wasn't always happy.  At times it seemed that a dark cloud would descend upon me, for no apparent reason. I had been healthy, happy, had a wonderful family life and great friends.  What was wrong?

I talked openly with my wife and close friends about this inability to escape the dark cloud. One of my buddies was a professor in the medical department at the University of Alberta. We discussed my situation and he sent me a couple of links which centred on The Happy Hormones.  I was tested by a medical professional who prescribed a daily dose of the drug Apo-Escitalopram. It works by increasing levels of a neurotransmitter called serotonin in the brain. Increased serotonin levels can lead to an improved mood. Within a couple of weeks my mindset seemed to level out.  The dark moods are now few and far between and I have had no negative side effects.  The restrictions and anxiety associated with COVID-19 were a good test.

I am not a medical professional, nor do I play one on TV.

Again, welcome back bunnyman666.

Steve, the old goalie in Kelowna with many new body parts but still between the pipes.

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We're exited to have you back on the forum! I was in a similar situation about 2-3 years ago following the untimely death of a childhood friend, and it scared the hell out of me because I had no idea what was going on. Panic attacks, depression, the whole package. They came back about two weeks ago but now that I know what they are and how to handle them, I'm having a much better experience this time around.

Life is short! Try to make it somewhat enjoyable!

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19 minutes ago, bildeer said:

We're exited to have you back on the forum! I was in a similar situation about 2-3 years ago following the untimely death of a childhood friend, and it scared the hell out of me because I had no idea what was going on. Panic attacks, depression, the whole package. They came back about two weeks ago but now that I know what they are and how to handle them, I'm having a much better experience this time around.

Life is short! Try to make it somewhat enjoyable!

I knew there was a reason I just think you’re such a cool guy in ALL of our interactions: you’re an old soul in that 20 year old person. 
 

I have had the panic attacks, as well (as I chronicled on my insta). One I thought was, as the immortal Fred Sanford would say “I’m comin’ to join you Elizabeth!!! This is the BIG ONE!!!” 
 

Thanks for sharing your experience! 

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1 hour ago, Wonder35 said:

bunnyman666, great to have you back.  I have always enjoyed your posts and comments on goalie forums. While you are handling some serious stuff physically and mentally, you can count on the support and typical goalie comments from us, whether you like it or not. Your history suggests that you can both dish and take some hits.  Good on ya' Pal.

One year before COVID-19 I wasn't always happy.  At times it seemed that a dark cloud would descend upon me, for no apparent reason. I had been healthy, happy, had a wonderful family life and great friends.  What was wrong?

I talked openly with my wife and close friends about this inability to escape the dark cloud. One of my buddies was a professor in the medical department at the University of Alberta. We discussed my situation and he sent me a couple of links which centred on The Happy Hormones.  I was tested by a medical professional who prescribed a daily dose of the drug Apo-Escitalopram. It works by increasing levels of a neurotransmitter called serotonin in the brain. Increased serotonin levels can lead to an improved mood. Within a couple of weeks my mindset seemed to level out.  The dark moods are now few and far between and I have had no negative side effects.  The restrictions and anxiety associated with COVID-19 were a good test.

I am not a medical professional, nor do I play one on TV.

Again, welcome back bunnyman666.

Steve, the old goalie in Kelowna with many new body parts but still between the pipes.

 

 

 

Your response means a lot to me, Steve! Thank you for the welcome!

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@bunnyman666 I am really glad to see you back on here.  You are are a person I automatically think of when I think of my time spent on goalie forums over the years.  I'm sorry to hear you've been struggling, but it sounds like you are taking in in stride and I salute you for communicating about it and sharing it with us. 

So cheers brother and welcome back. Please...stay a while.  

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4 hours ago, seagoal said:

@bunnyman666 I am really glad to see you back on here.  You are are a person I automatically think of when I think of my time spent on goalie forums over the years.  I'm sorry to hear you've been struggling, but it sounds like you are taking in in stride and I salute you for communicating about it and sharing it with us. 

So cheers brother and welcome back. Please...stay a while.  

LOL the forum rat!

Struggle is what we do, sometimes. All I want people to glean from this is that these types of things don’t get better on their own. You don’t *just* snap out of it. Of course I hope there isn’t surgery involved like there was for my colon.

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7 hours ago, southpawtendy48 said:

welcome back man. mental health is just as important at physical health especially in this day and age. forums have been not as active as i'm used to i guess so glad to see you're back :)

Forums are still easier than using FB groups. I did break down and get an FB page, albeit not with my name or likeness. The groups are hard to navigate, and the format is wonky. It’s fun to post my mods and such on Insta, but a forum feels more homey.

Thank you.

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Well, well, well! The Devil Bunny bloke returneth! No word of a lie, but I was wondering how you were getting on over the past weekend, and BAM! You’re back!

Without getting into a big thing, suffice it to say that I’ve struggled with my mental health too (different reasons, mind you), so I hear you, I feel you, and I support you. I think it’s a great move to come back here. But see and behave yourself, eh? Lol!

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1 hour ago, Lucky Pucker said:

Well, well, well! The Devil Bunny bloke returneth! No word of a lie, but I was wondering how you were getting on over the past weekend, and BAM! You’re back!

Without getting into a big thing, suffice it to say that I’ve struggled with my mental health too (different reasons, mind you), so I hear you, I feel you, and I support you. I think it’s a great move to come back here. But see and behave yourself, eh? Lol!

Mr. Puckey, er, um Pucker. Think enough about someone and they come back LOL

Some would argue that those of us who don the gear are automatically a bit on the crazy side. Wanting a hurling object to HIT us rather than behind us. But alas, this position *could* induce anxiety. If I could treat life like I play goal, we wouldn’t have this discussion. I like to do well, but I am not pre-occupied with it. There have been a few unfun moments in goal, but I don’t dwell on it. When a player starts fucking with me, then I start to play hard and serious.

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  • 2 weeks later...

Group therapy is an interesting experience. 
 
Sometimes when people are being judgy and just not nice people, I have to remember how incredibly pathetic some people are. My good friend and former shoppe employee is very ill right now. I can’t do anything about it. 
 
In the end, I have learnt how to not judge people, even when an internet bully is being a total C U Next Tuesday. Internet bullies are essentially pussies that need to find something else to do. 

I am happy to speak with anyone via PM if you think you need help. You are not broken and you are not alone.

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Stress can not only wear you down, it can make you ill, ignite lifelong health issues, trigger diseases and even downright kill you if left ignored.

If you are a person that struggles with handling stress, seek a healthier environment, make the right changes in your physical, mental, nutritional life, relationships etc.

Learn to breath, learn to count, learn to not let the world become your problem and your issues.

Smile a lot and say thank you even more for what is good in your life and more good things will follow.

"Thoughts become things, choose the right ones - The Universe" 

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@RichMan This is PRECISELY why I am telling the world to seek help if something is eating them up inside. I had a panic attack that felt like a cardiac event three weeks ago. Couple that with an extreme work environment and not dealing with the physical issues that nearly killed me a few years back, it was a recipe for disaster. I am seeking help for these things, and I am encouraging others to do the same. I am nowhere outside of the woods, yet. I have a long and winding road. But I will get there. 

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