Note: I feel you need to know about me, the author of the blogs, my 1st book, Roads to Addiction – Highways to Recovery and my 3rd book “Highway to Homelessness – Road to Recovery”. The events below led to homelessness, drinking, loneliness, depression, anxiety, fear, and a feeling of desperation. Through the events, people, educators, and other factors, my path has changed. NOW, let’s work together and prevent young people and adults from taking the wrong path.
Over three decades, I was married, had one son, helped build 3 companies, and led a happy life. My high tech sales and management profession led to a positive net worth estate of 1.4 million dollars, a modest house in Westborough, Massachusetts and lake front property on Lake Winnipesaukee in New Hampshire.
Starting in 2007, there were five events, in my life, that led to my current state of financial ruin, addiction, and homelessness. These events are not an excuse for what followed but were more of a catalyst. The events will be described in more detail in my book and future blog postings. These are some of the earlier experiences that influenced my path. So here we go:
1) Divorce: In March 2007 my wife told me “I do not love you, I do not want you, I do not want to have sex with you, and I should not spend any more of her money. I was crushed. My version of the War of the Roses had begun. The judge and the lawyers on both sides said it was one of ugliest cases they had seen in years.
2) The assault on my body and life: I was assaulted the day before Thanksgiving 2007 by Randy Landers. The first blindsided hit missed my temple by an inch. After coming to, I woke to being kicked and punched until Patricia, Terri, Mary, and Carrie pulled Randy away. The years 2008 and 2009 were hell from tremors and constant fear. It intensified especially during Randy Landers’s Attempt to Kill court case; it was then documents used in his defense were my personal papers from my house, provided by Mrs. Masters. This linked my divorce and the assault. I was crushed again. He was convicted. So much time and energy lost.
3) Financial ruin: A combination of divorce, the capital market crash in 2008, zero income for two and a half years due to the infection, and loss of hope resulted in a loss of property and savings. I became homeless.
4) Friends and some family distance themselves: When I started to have no value to my business friends and personal friends, they will moved away from me. My son and some other family members did not understand the circumstances, they got mad, disgusted, and move away from
5) The Infection!! This was the worst: In February 2011, I had to have back surgery to repair L4 and L5 which were touching the sciatic nerve. During the first operation, I was infected in the operating room which led to leaking spinal fluid.
I contracted an infection from the operating room. Upon being released from Worcester Hospital, a Patient Progress Record, dated 01/24/2011, was sent to the rehabilitation center. It stated in the Assessment, “CVASC- congestive heart failure, cardiomyopathy, sepsis, and sinus tachycardia”. In Global Issues, it stated, “The patient is critically ill with circulatory failure, neurologic failure, renal failure, hematologic failure, severe metabolic derangement, and overwhelming infection.” After two induced comas, two blood transfusions, and three more operations to correct the problem, I woke to a spine that was still not fixed. I was never informed about the infection and its after affects. After learning to walk and talk again, I thought I was normal. It took four years for my primary doctor to tell me that I will die if I am treated with any form of penicillin!
Note: To set things straight, my upbringing in the south side of Syracuse New York, gave me good street smarts. My mother and I later moved to an upscale town, Fayetteville-Manlius, New York. My street smarts were reinforced in the 70’s when I was trained in martial arts by Marines; I quickly learned that race, gender, age, and financial background do not make the man or woman. I believe these factors and something stronger helped me get through.
The catalysts led to masking the pain, homelessness, substance abuse, and financial ruin. These life changing experiences led to the streets and shelters. It was multiple action plans and events which led to my return to normalcy; at least a renewed quality of life.
Brian Master (pen name for William Reiley Butler)