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    Community Voices

    So tired of everything ... no purpose left

    I forgot how to spell the city that I was born in. I remember a time that I used to be so smart, usually I’d be the smartest in any room I’d walk into. Not anymore. Even making phone calls are tough because I always lose my focus. Too many concussions, I’m finding that I am getting so emotional. From mad to sad. Angry. I’m convinced I have CTE. The only thing in my “death note” is that I want my brain tested.

    So many health problems that I’ve basically given up. How many different doctors and specialists do I have to go to before the frustration of no one being able to help me sets in? I’ve seen them all. Second opinions for most as well.

    Exhausted all the time, it’s a struggle to get out of bed. When I “try” to sleep I struggle. Inevitably I crash for an hour or two a couple times a day when I’m not really trying.

    I feel so lonely and alone. I cry everyday. I lay in bed waiting to crash and hoping I don’t ever wake up. I haven’t seen my friends (the two who still pretend to be my friend) in over 2 years now. Covid is a lame excuse at this point.

    I take 14 different pills a day and I’m still miserable. Back, neck, knee, and nerve pain shooting down my legs. Frequent headaches. Double vision. Confused often. Depression. Anxiety. Broken.

    I often laugh that I’d never kill myself because I’d f- - - it up somehow and just be in even worse shape.

    I have a dog that’s 16 years old. I get no joy anymore, and take care of her under obligation. I am kinda expecting that my body will fail once and for all when she’s gone. I won’t have any reason to get out of bed once she passes.

    #ChronicPain #TraumaticBrainInjury #TBI #CTE #Neuropathy #Nervedamage #MajorDepressiveDisorder #Anxiety #donefighting #Insomnia

    4 people are talking about this
    Community Voices

    I don’t remember my life before... Being broken is all I know

    <p>I don’t remember my life before... Being broken is all I know</p>
    2 people are talking about this

    Will Smith Film Sheds Light on Disease the NFL Denied for Years

    A condition that went undiagnosed for too long is about to enter the limelight. On Monday the official trailer dropped for the film “Concussion,” starring Will Smith as Dr. Bennet Omalu, the man who identified the brain disease associated with depression and dementia in former professional athletes. Chronic Traumatic Encephalopathy (CTE) is a progressive degenerative disease of the brain found in people with a history of repetitive brain trauma, according to Boston University’s CTE Center. This type of brain degeneration can occur weeks or years after trauma and is associated with memory loss, confusion, impaired judgment, impulse control problems, aggression, depression, and, eventually, progressive dementia. CTE has been known to affect boxers since the 1920s, but only as recently as 2002 was it discovered that the disease affects retired professional football players and other athletes with a history of brain trauma. Omalu, a forensic neuropathologist, identified the condition after examining the brain of deceased Pittsburgh Steeler Mike Webster. Webster lived with severe depression and dementia before he died of a heart attack at the age of 50, The New York Times reported. Upon examining Webster’s brain during an autopsy, Omalu discovered brown and red splotches which turned out to be large accumulations of proteins that affected cells in regions responsible for mood and emotions, GQ reported. He named the disease CTE and published his findings in the July 2005 edition of “Neurosurgery.” The National Football League denied his discovery and requested the article be retracted. The publication did not comply with the request. Smith as Omalu in “Concussion” Next, Omalu examined the brain of former Pittsburg Steelers guard Terry Long, who, after living with depression, took his own life at the age of 45 by drinking antifreeze. Omalu again found evidence of CTE. In 2006, when he examined the brain of Andre Waters, a safety for the Philadelphia Eagles, he again found CTE. Waters, 44, had shot himself after living with chronic pain and severe depression for many years and being denied disability by the NFL, GQ reported. It became clear to Omalu and his colleagues that CTE could be the explanation behind the high rates of depression, dementia and suicide in former NFL players. Despite difficulties in obtaining brains to examine, and suppressive efforts by the NFL, Omalu continued in his research. “You kind of can’t stop because of the importance of the findings,” Omalu’s colleague, Christopher Nowinski, told The Washington Post. “To not keep going would hurt a lot of people.” In 2014, the Department of Veterans Affairs’ brain repository in Bedford, Massachusetts, found evidence of the degenerative brain disease in 76 of the 79 former players it had examined, PBS News reported. Omalu’s work has helped bring about some reform in how the NFL treats concussions and mental illnesses. After a hearing before the House Judiciary Committee in October 2009, for the first time, the NFL publicly acknowledged the existence of long-term effects from concussions, The New York Times reported. Since then the league has shifted away from a denial of the problem and towards concussion management — there are more medical precautions in place for players and the NFL has also donated funds for concussion research. Now that discussion around CTE has become more prevalant, it’s given athletes a chance to speak out. Recently, several former players talked with Jim Trotter of ESPN.com about their post-playing-career battles with depression. See some of ESPN’s coverage on depression in former NFL players below: “It’d be easier to start with which ones do not have depression,” former Green Bay Packers offensive lineman Aaron Taylor told Trotter, according to Bleacher Report. “Observationally, it’s a significant percentage. It varies by degree, obviously, but everyone struggles.” Omalu’s work in discovery of CTE, as well as his advocacy on behalf of professional sports players, will be brought to light in the film “Concussion,” which will be in theaters this December. The recently released trailer shows Smith, who plays Omalu, as he makes his discovery and attempts to educate players, parents and coaches about the dangers of “gridiron dementia,” as CTE is sometimes called — all the while facing obstacles in the form of the NFL and America’s refusal to acknowledge the dangers present in its favorite sport. Watch the full trailer above, and go here for PBS’s timeline of the NFL’s concussion crisis. If you or someone you know needs help, please visit the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline. You can also reach the Crisis Text Line by texting “START” to 741-741. Head here for a list of crisis centers around the world.