I have 2 older brothers, one is 7 years older and the other is 10 years older. They introduced me to weightlifting and I fell in love with it. It was also very theraputic for my severe asthma which I suffered from throughout my entire childhood. All the months spent in the hospital with only machines and drugs keeping me alive caused my body to remain very weak and underdeveloped. This went on for 14 years. It was a tough childhood! My parents had to learn how to give shots of epinepherine and suspherine to give me at home to keep me alive long enough to get to the emergency room. At home I had to keep a nebuelizer machine to administer asthma drugs and also had to use 3 different inhalers plus continuously take 3 different oral medications including prednisone which really messed up my body. When I wasn't in the hospital and was able to go to school, I could never participate in gym class because my health was too poor. There were 3 separate occasions when the doctors told my parents I was too far gone, too weak, and at the max amount of drugs that I could be on, yet things were becoming progressively worse-- so that my parents should be prepared for the worst. Along with the grace of God, bodybuilding was my answer to reverse the effects of this life threatening disease. Beyond that, bodybuilding has helped me cope with a number of different injuries. It has helped me recover from ruptured discs in my spine due to a severe back injury, scoliosis, a ruptured bicep tendon, ulnar nerve damage, a torn rotator cuff, and being absent an anterior cruciate ligament and also a medial meniscus in one knee which resulted in many dislocations and cartilage tears that required surgery and then also the opposite leg was 4 inches longer than the other leg which also required intense surgery to correct. I was a train wreck. I had several top orthopedic doctors tell me I would never ever be able to get into bodybuilding or lift heavy weights again because some of those injuries were impossible to recover from. Doctors even wanted to put steel rods in my spine (a spinal fusion) to protect it from further damage but I refused this surgery. Still the prognosis was I would never lift weights again. I couldn't take no for an answer, I just refused to accept that would be the end of my bodybuilding dreams. I made a decision that I would never give up and I was gonna either become a bodybuilder or die trying. In 2008 I was diagnosed with parathyroid disease which resulted from a 1350 mm tumor on my parathyroid gland. This caused my PTH levels to sky-rocket which sucked calcium out of my bones and muscles and redirected it to my nervous system, kidneys and intestines that caused many years of pain and sickness. Most recently at age 38 I was diagnosed with a secondary form of hypothyroidism (abnormally low thyroid hormone out-put) due to an abnormality of my pituitary gland. I'm still training as hard as possible despite the reduced metabolism and energy levels. Most recently in June of 2014 I dropped to the floor due to excruciating abdominal pain. I was rushed to the hospital via ambulance and within hours underwent emergency surgery to have sections of both of my small and large intestines removed. The recovery was a slow and agonizing process. I can say from experience that you should never ever give up on your dreams, or anything your passionate about in life. Furthermore, you should NEVER allow anyone to dictate the extent of your limitations. You create your own reality and your own destiny. Don't ever give anyone else the power to create it for you. It is possible as long as you believe it is. Don't be disheartened by statistics, or odds because the only people they are against are those who lack faith-- and that doesn't have to be you! Developing my physique for me was like building a suit of armor to protect the frail sick little kid that I remember being. I love bodybuilding & power-lifting and I will do them until I can do them no more-- despite any inherit disadvantages. I choose to follow this path without the use of drugs because I've got stronger forces that drive me. Hopelessness is only a state of mind, therefore impossibilities are nothing more than illusions.
Why I Love it
Besides using bodybuilding to rebound from illness and injuries, I just love doing it. It's the ultimate rush for me to feel stronger, watching my weights move up and watching my appearance change. Bodybuilding is my mistress and it keeps me real.