In The End

In the end, as you fade into the night,
Who will tell the story of your life?
And who will remember your last goodbye?

Two years ago, I came closer to joining this list, than I would have ever liked to have gotten.

It actually started a week and a half earlier, on the morning of the anniversary of my father’s death. I woke up at my normal morning time, started to get ready for work, then felt faint as my blood pressure started to drop.

I’ve learned how to minimize the impact of falling, so I hoped that when I was feeling better, the worst would have passed. Unfortunately, something happened beneath the surface that would keep brewing for the next week.

Apparently, when I fell, bacteria that was healthy on the outside of my body, found an opportunity to get inside, and developed a deep-tissue skin infection which covered approximately 30% of my body.

So, as I began a week of long commutes, a long march on the streets of DC and the Washington Mall, and a strenuous week of conference and training, I started feeling physically different, but I was able to identify potential causes for everything that should clear up, so it wasn’t something that worried me.

I learned a lot of interesting biology information through the experience.

Infection feeds sugar, sugar feeds infection, and the stress hormones associated with being sick feeds sugar even more. So, by the time I got to the Emergency Room, my sugar level was through the roof.

In all, I spent about two and a half weeks in the hospital, and a week on bed rest.

Joseph Alex Martin is a Copeland Center-certified Mental Health Recovery including Wellness Recovery Action Plan (WRAP) Advanced Level Co-Facilitator. Joseph began utilizing his own WRAP in 2008 following his certification as a Peer Support Specialist. Joseph was a Certified Peer Support Specialist in Pennsylvania for 9 1/2 years, and is now living in New Jersey and working in New York. In his role as a Certified Peer Support Specialist, Joseph supports the recovery of his peers in their plans to take action to recover wellness in their lives.