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Why I Play Airsoft - The Painful Musings of a Savage Haggis

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Old September 10th, 2007, 00:39   #1
Savage Haggis
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Why I Play Airsoft - The Painful Musings of a Savage Haggis

Why I Play Airsoft - The Painful Musings of a Savage Haggis

This morning, Sunday, I woke up & could barely move.

It takes me the better part of thirty minutes to a hour to flex the kinks, strains & knots out in order to get myself quasi-mobile. I'm generally not the nicest person to be in proximity of during this first little while in the morning.

This is nothing new, and hasn't been, for the past ten months. Damn near every morning starts out this way. As many doctors & specialists have told me time & again, I will become accustomed to it. So far, so good. It is becoming "the routine". The norm.

This morning, however, was different. Sure, I hurt, just like every other morning, but when I finally pulled myself out of bed, dragged myself to the bathroom & looked in the mirror, I had a smirk on my face.

Yesterday was game day.

It was a great day - a fun day.

I played hard - pushed hard & laughed hard.

And today I'm paying for it.

So be it.


I've had a lot of people ask me, over the past several months, questions along the lines of "Is it a good idea for you to be playing airsoft?" or more specifically, & my personal favorite, "Why do you do this to yourself?"

Both valid questions, to be sure.

Some people are concerned for my well being, granted, others offer up dime store philosophies of "taking it easy on my self." I've tried to explain why I play, but more often then not, my explanations go over, or sound over, their heads. I never really gave their questions much thought until this morning.

Call it an epiphany, if you want.

There have been only two other organizations that I have been involved with, where I have felt completely at ease, where I fit, and where I felt I belonged. Organizations where I knew the people as family & friends, where we shared both the good and the bad. Where one minute you're at each others throats, and the next you're crying & laughing in your beers. One was the Infantry, the other was working Special FX & Firearms in the film industry.

I can say now, after playing airsoft for most of the spring and summer, that there is now a third group. Airsoft.

Follow the bouncing ball.

The past ten months have been a constant blur of doctor's appointments, medical assessments, prescription drugs, physiotherapy sessions, daily physical limitations, frustration & pain. Even though I returned to work back in July, physically speaking, I'm operating only around 70% to 80% of previous capabilities. At home, I have days where I want nothing to do with the outside world, simply because it hurts to move. But that's the way it is now & will be for the rest of my life, so say a goodly portion of the Canadian Medical establishment.

I've been sent to my fair share of Psycho-analysts, by way of WCB, Physio-Specialists, and various Doctors for various aspects of "Life Skills Retraining", "Physio-retraining" & "Pain Adjustment/Tolerance Programs" to become a Jewish Comedian. I know it's supposedly all in my best interests, but truthfully, it comes off as nothing more than "Cookie Cutter" medicine most times. Oft times I sit in their offices & all I hear coming from them is the equivalent of listening to Charlie Brown's teacher, "Wahn Wahn Wahn... Wahn Wahn..."

The week consists of work, home, pain - repeat - broken only by specialist visits to Richmond, Vancouver, North Vancouver, etc.

So what changed?

Airsoft.

Why?

I'm active again. I'm useful again. I'm having fun again.

And, perhaps, most importantly, I've met an outstanding group of people.


To borrow a line from the song, "Switching to Glide":

"Nothing matters but the weekend.
From a Tuesday point of view."

Saturday - Game Day...

...is the one day of the week that is for me and me alone.

Not work concerns.

Not home concerns.

Not doctors, not specialists, not counciling sessions.

Not worrying about medications, pain adjustment/tolerance or what have you.

Or how deeply it pains me when I'm scheduled to work on Saturday.

It's Game Day, damn it.

Everything else goes on the back burner, if only for a short time.

The day belongs to me and the rest of the world can wait on hold.

Sure I'm going to pay for it in exhaustion & pain, but you know what? I'm there, already. From my point of view, it's worth it.

I'm going out to get active, to get the adrenaline flowing, to get some exercise, to meet & hang out with some great people & above all to have fun with life, despite everything & everyone else. I've accomplished more with my involvement in airsoft, I feel, than could possibly be accomplished in a thousand pyhsio/counciling sessions.

My wife thinks it's great. My Doctors, Physiotherapists & Specialists think it great for me to be active like this - who the hell am I to argue with that kind of support!? These people far out weigh those who feel it necessary, in their minds, for me to take it easy & not be so hard on myself.

Yes, it means that much to me.

Yes, I enjoy the sport that much.

I'm grateful, beyond words, for being a part of it.

And with that...

Bar's open!

Have at 'er!!


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Quite the thread; seen the return of Savage Haggis and the end of an empire.

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Old September 10th, 2007, 00:45   #2
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Good on ya, mate. Its always nice to get away. Nice to hear a bit of insight about the person behind the millions of hilarious pictures posted forum wide.

Cheers Savage!
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Old September 10th, 2007, 00:49   #3
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(Sorry, couldn't think of anything else to say)
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Old September 10th, 2007, 01:12   #4
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Old September 10th, 2007, 02:07   #5
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I know it's cliche (and kinda dime store ) but if your mind is happy, and you're content with life, then life will reflect that. The more enjoyment you can squeeze out of life, the more enjoyment there will be to squeeze out. Also I find the proper frame of mind can actually help speed up the healing process (if you're suffering from something that can heal, which despite the experts, I consider to be everything)

If you're sitting there like a lump on a log day in and day out, wallowing in self pity and 'what if's and 'I'd likes's then life will keep giving you more crap to not like.

Granted I really have no idea what your mindset is like, but it sounds like you've been 'in a rut' as it were, lacking the enjoyment of life, yet it sounds like Airsoft is the rising sun of your day, so kick ass!

"the darker the shadow, the brighter the light that cast it" (I find thinking on that helps when I start getting depressed and shit.)

Anywho... *thumbs up*
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Old September 10th, 2007, 02:10   #6
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Old September 10th, 2007, 02:13   #7
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Old September 10th, 2007, 07:53   #8
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I've never heard it put so well, it's almost as though you took some of the thoughts right out of my head. As you and I have discussed, I know how you feel all too well. It's amazing how much better a painkiller airsoft is, sure beats a "Pam", a "Perc" or a "Demy" any day. (although it's nice to have them at home for later on )

See yah out there soon.
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Old September 10th, 2007, 09:11   #9
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Haggis,

I feel I can personally relate to your situation up to a certain degree. Six years ago I broke my acetabulum (Hip) in a motocross accident. Being sort of an adrenaline junkie myself and to hold a promise not to ride cross anymore. Airsoft has replaced that gape, Filled that whole.

I do feel the same after pushing myself from a game. Sometimes the next day I'm bed ridden. Never has the thought come across to not push myself so hard or not attend or pass up a good game.

The only events I have pass up on are the ones I know I would not be able to be of help to my team / hinder the completion of their objectives that day.

Sometimes I wish I would be in better shape for the sole reason to be able to stick around post game and shoot the shit some more...hang out. Have a beer in some cases. Sharing a days glorious moments with fellow airsoft'er is sometimes dificult because I must retire early to minimize the next days suffering.

Most players who know me are aware that my condition in no way hinders my "lethality" in-game. Actually sometimes I think I gives me a minor edge in situation where patients is necessary (sniping & ambushes).

So I to salute *salutes* you for holding onto what you are passionate about.


Regards,
Mud
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Old September 10th, 2007, 09:15   #10
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Well said.
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Old September 10th, 2007, 10:33   #11
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Old September 10th, 2007, 11:02   #12
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Chronic pain is something you cannot fully understand unless it happens to you, like parenthood.

I took my body for granted my whole life, get cyatica in the back/leg and told my disk is worn down (maybe minor in comparison but it's still debilitating at times to me)

I live in pain or discomfort every single day now. Humans get used to it, it's amazing.

It's not easy, Haggis you have a great sense of humor and share that well and being in pain doesn't make you want to laugh as much, but it helps everyone anyway.

I pay for running around and crawling all over the place too, but for a great game it sure is worth it.

Keep the positive attitude going. I know it's not easy.
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Old September 10th, 2007, 11:11   #13
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Thanks for posting this. I remember getting strange looks when I said I could NOT run at games, or participate on true milsims that would be longer than an afternoon.

Simply put and not going into details; I like to be able to walk the next day, or to have a heartbeat... dealing with medical issues that can kill you for real is not fun. It's possible to cope, but not easy when you dont 'look' sick.

There are those of us who try our best but just cant do some things.

So when I played I simply adapted my gaming to fit my limitations and still be useful, or went to the staging area and maintained guns.
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Old September 10th, 2007, 11:17   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Shrike View Post
Chronic pain is something you cannot fully understand unless it happens to you, like parenthood.

I took my body for granted my whole life, get cyatica in the back/leg and told my disk is worn down (maybe minor in comparison but it's still debilitating at times to me)

I live in pain or discomfort every single day now. Humans get used to it, it's amazing.

It's not easy, Haggis you have a great sense of humor and share that well and being in pain doesn't make you want to laugh as much, but it helps everyone anyway.

I pay for running around and crawling all over the place too, but for a great game it sure is worth it.

Keep the positive attitude going. I know it's not easy.
I wouldn't say I have the same thing, but maybe similar. Ive never been checked out by a doctor or been told what exactly is wrong with me but im not even 20 yet and I get severe lower back pain in my spine. Its been a gradual thing over the last year and never seems to get any better. Day in and day out I get aching and shooting pains down either side of my lower back and sometimes into my legs and its something ive come to live with now... and yes I need to get it checked out. You're right though, you get used to it and you carry on regardless.

But anyways back on topic, I surprisingly took the time to read that entire post Haggis and its a good read and keep goin!
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Old September 10th, 2007, 12:13   #15
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Originally Posted by TrueTGN View Post
I wouldn't say I have the same thing, but maybe similar. Ive never been checked out by a doctor or been told what exactly is wrong with me but im not even 20 yet and I get severe lower back pain in my spine. Its been a gradual thing over the last year and never seems to get any better. Day in and day out I get aching and shooting pains down either side of my lower back and sometimes into my legs and its something ive come to live with now... and yes I need to get it checked out. You're right though, you get used to it and you carry on regardless.

But anyways back on topic, I surprisingly took the time to read that entire post Haggis and its a good read and keep goin!
That is likely scyatica. Pinched scyatic nerve. It's about as much fun as dentistry with no anesthetics. No joke.
Do yourself a favor, have it checked. When it hits bad you will NOT be able to walk. Dont wait until you have to crawl to a phone to get help.
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