After being taken to Presbyterian Medical Hospital, I was placed on the 7th Floor, which housed the Mental Rehabilitation Department. I never felt so low, embarrassed and depressed in all my life. Word spread quickly throughout our Church members at the Baptist Church as well as neighbors, family and close friends. I was placed in a 10×10 hospital room with only a gown and nonslip socks. All my toiletries, belt, shoe laces, shirts, and pants were removed from the room including my cell phone. I was only allowed to visit a restroom with 2 orderly assistant nurses that were as big as professional linebackers. At the time, I didn’t realize I was placed in somewhat of a safe room and placed on 24 hour Suicide Watch for the first week. I was visibly upset and angry. As most people whom actually know me, my big fat mouth always got me in more trouble. It seemed the more my attitude changed towards what my rights were, the more privileges I lost. I learned within the first 48 hours to keep my big mouth shut. After the first 48 hours, I finally accepted I had a problem. I was depressed like never before. My actions at home were some of the reasons I was being handled so seriously in the Mental Hospital. I immediately changed my attitude towards the employees, nurses and Psychiatrist whom were assigned to my case to help me get better. I was diagnosed with Situational Depression. This is when the mind begins to overthink certain situations that become extremely overwhelming for someone to comprehend. Basically, I was constantly beating myself up internally for the decisions I made to quit such a high paying job. After several weeks of one on one meetings with staff counselors and group therapy, it all began to make sense to me. I met daily with the Psychiatrist whom explained that the brain was like a car engine which began to misfire. They started me on 50 MG of Zoloft for Depression and 2 MG of Xanax for Anxiety. I hated taking these pills, but the doctor kept assuring me that it would take up to 3-4 weeks before I began to start feeling better and not so uptight all the time. My main concern is I did not want to feel like a zombie. I was already on enough pills for my heart and diabetes. Over the next week, I was taken off suicide watch and put in with the regular patients whom were in for everything from Bipolar disorder, Schizophrenia, Manic Depressant, as well as Obsessive Compulsive Disorder. On the outside, everyone in the Psych rehab seemed to be normal. They had other salesmen, lawyers, teachers, account executives, as well as those that were homeless and on the streets. After learning that others were facing similar situations and this was treatable, I quit dwelling on what might have happened. I began to attend more sessions on a daily basis, started going to the gym for 1 hour a day and would visit with family and friends from 3-5 PM in the afternoon. During my stay in the hospital, I was able to address many issues that were underlying not just with my job. I began to realize my marriage was not the greatest and my wife and I mainly coexisted like brother and sister rather than husband and wife. After spending 4 weeks in one on one daily sessions, group counseling as well as Social Worker visits, I was released to an out patient program that I had to attend for another 4 weeks Monday, Wednesday and Friday. During the next 4 weeks, we had a lot of homework that needed to be turned in after each day of class. The classes went from 9-3 with 30 minutes for lunch. It was extremely interesting. I began to regain some of my personality without all the crying. After a while, the Doctor decided to change me for 50 MG of Zoloft to 50 MG of Pristiq and he took me off the Xanax which was highly addictive and placed me on 2 MG of Klonopin twice a day. After 4 weeks, I actually started feeling even better. the combination of Pristiq and Klonopin is what got me back to feeling absolutely normal again without the spikes I received from the Xanax. After I completed the 4 week out patient program, I would visit the psychotherapist weekly to discuss my feelings. I still met with the Psychiatrist, but that was normally every 6- 8 weeks for just a few minutes to discuss how I was interacting with family and friends. After about 4 months. I was back to normal. We even decided to take a Cruise with members of our Church Group. I realized I had a lot of work to do to get my self esteem back together. I began to seek work again in the summer of 2010. As crazy as this might sound, I received a call from my old boss. He was attending the IDDBA in Houston, TX in June of 2010. He stopped by the booth of my last company and they told him I left the company. He gave me a call that Sunday afternoon the day the show opened. When I called he asked me if I was still wanting to work or did I retire. I said no I’m not retired and I would still like to work, but I was home reading the paper. He explained that he was majority owner of this food company with 3 other partners, We talked for a bit and he said why don’t you visit the website and see if this is something you might be interested in pursuing. I agreed to view the website and the next thing you know, he called me back and asked me to book a ticket to Chicago, IL and come to a Bakery Supplier Fair he was having at the Hilton Garden Inn in Saint Charles, IL. I always trusted him as he was the first Executive that gave me an opportunity on the Manufacturing side of the business. He and I always stayed pretty close after I left the company. I sold a lot of Bagels , Biscuits and Scones during the 3 years I worked for him. Due to the new medicines I was taking, I did have some issues with weight gain. I had not really exercised during those last 3 months, but my appetite came back to the old habits I always had. When I was nervous, depressed, or upset, my go to was always food. I had crawled back up to about 450 lbs. and was still gaining. Before I left Saint Charles, IL, I met with the 4 owners and left to go home with a new job. He decided to deficit spend since I had brought no business to the company and he hired me with a good starting salary, car allowance, 3 weeks vacation, incentive program, etc. I had my A game back again. I was working with someone I looked up to and trusted – Amen!!
Will to Live – Pride, Greed & Lust – Part 56