NightGoat, it sounds like you and I are both living on "borrowed time", to an extent. And as you point out, BIG thanks are owed for the superb efforts of a lot of people using a lot of technology. I would urge you to collect your thoughts (as you seem to have done so well above), and start a new thread. Tell your story and see where the lessons apply. For me, this thread has been very cathartic and there's been at least a dozen times I've gone back and read the whole thread from start to finish--including remembering most of the posts that the mods/admins had to cut out. If you're like me, this thing plays over and over again in your mind and a faceplant thread can be of assistance in chronicling your path of progress and mindset.
Stay strong and keep getting stronger, amigo.