Bleacher Report: My Hero

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Bleacher Report: My Hero

The first week of June this year was the worst week of my life.

I got a phone call around 1:00 AM on June 1st from my uncle saying that my mom was in the hospital. I rushed over, not really thinking that the situation was serious, but when I got there, she had flat-lined and they were taking her away.

I was devastated. I cried all night. I asked God how he could do something like this; I didn’t even get a chance to say goodbye.

This might seem like something from a tragic Hollywood movie, but it was reality, and when it happens to you in real life it’s worse than any movie.

My uncle came over to my house, and with tears in his eyes, told me that everyone has a time, and that I needed to get ahold of myself.

Three days after my mom died, I was eating for the first time since the tragedy, when I got a call from my girlfriend. She was crying. She told me to go to my uncle’s house because something bad had happened. I tried to ask her what was wrong, but she hung up the phone before I could even ask.

While driving over, my mind was racing, wondering what had happened. Nowhere in my mind was I thinking it could be that my uncle had died. Yet, when I showed up at the house the police, ambulance, and my girlfriend were there. I saw a stretcher roll out of the front door, and I fell to my knees crying.

In an instant I went from simply depressed to emotionally retarded (my doctor’s diagnoses). I pushed my girlfriend away when she came over to hug me as I sat there on the sidewalk, because at that moment I felt like everything that I loved was going to die.

She told me that someone broke into his house and shot him. I got up and ran to my car. I was so out of it that I didn’t even realize my girlfriend was in the car.

I drove home, ran to my room and locked the door. For the next three days I didn’t do anything. All I could think about was how this could have happened. I got so bad, that I woke up in the middle of the night and went to the police station; telling them in a psychotic haze that I had killed my uncle. In my grief-stricken delusion I actually believed I had.

At that point I was put in the hospital.

For the next three months I stayed in a mental institution. I wasn’t crazy; I was just so depressed that the doctors said everything I thought became a reality in my mind. To my anguish-laden mind I was the cause of my mom and uncle’s death.

It sounds so weird, but I was really bad. I lost my job, and my girlfriend had to find work while I was in the hospital.

While I will always carry emotional scars from this time, after three months I'd healed to the point I could function again. I was released from the hospital on Sunday, September 2nd.

While going through my troubles, I'd forgotten all about Bleacher Report. That is, until my girlfriend mentioned it in passing over the phone (she'd stayed over at her sister’s house while I was in the hospital).

As soon as we'd finished our conversation I jumped online to take a look at B/R again, and was surprised by the new look. I'd received many bulletin posts and comments, and looking at them I felt like I was at home.

One of the writers here gave me that sense of being at home more than most. His pen name is Hotnuke, and he makes me feel like I'm a vital part of this website.

Widely known around the site, he has never failed to send me feedback and comments. His recent article about Joyful Playing really helped me realize that life has many obstacles, but every day is a new one.

Not only has Hotnuke helped me, but so has Ryan Michael. Ryan has to be the most committed Colts fan I know, and I know quite a few. Saraswathi Sirigina (Sara) has also supported me through my time here. Others like Hao Meng, Ross Jones, Gray Ghost, Aaron O’Connor, and everyone else has done a lot for me too.

But to the one who started the site, Zander, thanks for everything. Without you I don’t know where I would be. I decided to go to college because you and everyone on this site helped me realize how much I want to write about sports.

So here’s to everyone. Thanks!

-Ricky

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