Hey guys, I want to talk about my heart attack that I had when I was 32 in wake of DMX’s death yesterday April 9th, 2021. He died from a heart attack, drug related heart attack when he was 50, and I’m 48 right now so it’s kind of bittersweet because I used to listen to DMX and there’s a lot of people that die unexpectedly from heart failure and a lot of it’s due to alcohol.
In fact, my mom’s dad died when he was 40, and left my mom without a father when she was seven, and that was alcohol related. I didn’t even think that you could die from alcohol. I was so naive when I was drunk, I didn’t really think that there were complications to alcohol. I thought heart attacks happened from cholesterol and just old age. I never knew that you could die from alcohol until I did more research on it.
I started drinking when I was 17 and it did something to me that wasn’t like other people. I mean, it hit me, it gave me a speed effect. I felt immortal, I could go all night drinking and not pass out. I loved life. I was talkative. I was extroverted when normally I was shy and inward.
So it was really powerful. It had a grip on me. Both my parents didn’t drink because they didn’t want to be like their parents, so they skipped the booze. But my dad was kind of like a dry drunk. He had rage issues even though he didn’t drink. I think he was still dealing with the way he grew up under an alcoholic dad, but it didn’t skip me, I took to alcohol with fiery vengeance, and it just lit me up, made me manic.
So, in my 20s, I started to romanticize the alcoholic artists, I romanticized alcoholic writers like Hemingway and Jack Kerouac and Neal Cassady. Neal Cassady was Jack Kerouac’s friend and Cassidy got drunk one night, and started walking down the railroad tracks, at least this is almost a myth. He walked down some railroad tracks counting the ties, and it was a very cold night that night and he died from exposure.
Jack Kerouac died when he was, I believe 47 from alcohol. He died a pathetic mess, living with his mother and he couldn’t hold a job and he was just very feeble and wasn’t the Jack Kerouac that he was when he wrote his novels.
So by the time I got to 32, I was a heavy drinker and was drinking every night getting wasted blacked out, and don’t remember what I did. People had to tell me what I did the night before, and I hadn’t really started morning drinking yet to get rid of the hangover but I think I had experimented with it, but I was definitely drinking a lot every night.
One day, I was training at a new job, and my friend who I actually drank with the night before, it was Cinco de Mayo and we drank tequila. He was actually training me on saute and how to flip omelets and stuff out at this restaurant, 20 miles out of town.
While I was watching him flip an omelet, I turned white, and felt this pressure on my chest and I turned white and I went outside and I ran to the bathroom because I had to go. I felt nauseous at the same time so I thought I was going to puke but then I had diarrhea. It was trying to come out both ends, and I had this pressure on my heart and I started to tremble because I got really cold really fast but sweating at the same time.
So I went out of the bathroom and laid on the back sidewalk behind the restaurant, and all of a sudden a Born Again waitress was praying over me and then the owner ran out and gave me two aspirin to thin my blood or whatever. I’m 32, and so the paramedics came. I said I think I’m having a heart attack and the paramedic was like, Yeah, whatever kid relax, you know, let me hook you up.
He put the EKG on me, and then realized that my EKG was through the charts, it was just crazy, it was just doing this weird stuff, and he was like okay we’re flying you out. So they airlifted me on a helicopter to Seattle. My left anterior artery was 70% clogged and they put a stent in it. So that was the Widowmaker, that was clogged, and I had no idea why I would have cholesterol, I was pretty thin, I worked out, but now I was hitting the bottle really hard. I did smoke but only like 10 cigarettes a day.
So I really had no idea – and did that stop me from drinking? No I drank heavier than ever after that for another four years before I finally quit drinking.
So there’s a thing that can happen when you abuse alcohol. It’s called alcoholic cardiomyopathy and it mainly happens to men between the ages of 35 to 50 if they drink every day and have five to 15 years of heavy drinking under their belt. And that’s where the walls of the heart get really thin. You have trouble breathing. You can get dizziness, lightheadedness, your legs and arms can swell.
It’s just where the heart gets weak, and then it starts getting enlarged, because it’s trying to pump blood and it can’t do its job because it’s weakened by the alcohol. So you can definitely die from alcohol from heart disease, that is a form of heart disease, cardiomyopathy, and then that can lead to more intense, dangerous things like congestive heart failure.
So alcohol is definitely a killer. I was drinking twice a day towards the end of my drinking, getting drunk in the morning, passing out, waking up in the afternoon and getting drunk all over again.
I stopped eating because I didn’t want it to ruin my buzz, I was drinking cheap malt liquor. I didn’t have a lot of money, so I had to stretch it as far as it could go. In my insanity, I was thinking why not just stop eating and from there I had a huge downward spiral. My brain was starving for nutrients. I was passing out while I was standing, and almost lost my job, lost several jobs drinking I mean, I haven’t even gotten into the good stuff yet. But there’s other videos for that. I just want to talk about my heart attack and what happened.
So, it’s been, I think, 15 years 16 years since my heart attack and I seem to be doing better. If you want to reduce your cholesterol, there’s a supplement called cholestoff, and you can get that on Amazon. Also, if you want to stay away from Medications there’s also CBD oil which can help reduce your blood pressure and help your blood sugar levels, and it can also reduce inflammation.
I’ll leave a link under this article for my CBD oil that I’ve been using for the last four years, and everything seems to be fine. I need to lose a little weight, get some belly fat now, and I’m trying to get in shape again. So definitely check out those things, and thanks for listening to my story, like and subscribe, and we’ll talk to you soon.
Erik C Johnson