Thursday, June 30, 2011

June 27th...

While that date doesn't mark a huge calender change..or a major holiday where people can get out of work, get presents or have a huge parade. It does mark a change in how people see PTSD and the stigma attached to it. Hopefully this small change will start a social epidemic and will help people change their minds and see that while you can't see the damage of PTSD there are wounds that never heal...they never go away! They are there in some form or another...I know I'm bit late writing this..on June 27th 2011 one of our WTB soldiers was found dead...

The US Congress has declared June 27, 2011 National PTSD Awareness Day..
•2.4% of personnel returning from deployment to the Afghanistan or Iraq war are clinically diagnosed with PTSD;
•17% of Afghanistan and Iraq war veterans exposed to sustained ground combat report symptoms of PTSD;
•PTSD is or has been experienced by 10% of Gulf War veterans and 30% of Vietnam veterans.

Everyday people fight to get help...everyday those people are ignored. What most people that are there to "help" fail to realize is that those people aren't just random numbers in the system..they have names, they have identities..they are Sons, Fathers, Husbands, Mothers, Daughters, Wives and most importantly they are human beings who have gone through something so profound that it has changed them mentally and physically. There has been study after study suggesting that the brain does change due to PTSD. This isn't a fake illness to get out of a deployment or a quick way to get out of the military and collect benefits. 

Everyday there is a vet out in the world feeling like no one understands them...everyday there is a vet who is contemplating the month of May our suicide rate went up with 21 potential suicides and 1 confirmed the others are pending investigation(this is only the Active duty side of the Military)...each month the rate is going higher..when do we stop it? When do we help these men and women? If you see someone or know someone that is showing the signs of PTSD please step in help them! Don't let them be another statistic for the Military...

Signs of PTSD:
  1. Re-experiencing the traumatic event
  2. Avoiding reminders of the trauma
  3. Increased anxiety and emotional arousal
  4. Anger and irritabilty
  5. Guilt, shame, or self-blame
  6. Substance abuse
  7. Feelings of mistrust and betrayal
  8. Depression and hopelessness
  9. Suicidial thoughts and feelings
  10. Feeling alienated
  11. Physical aches and pains
  12. Implusive behavior

Friday, June 24, 2011

Down the Rabbit Hole...

Last night before I went to sleep I was just laying in bed with John...and I got to thinking what the best phrase was to sum up my life...and then I remembered the scene in Alice in Wonderland where she was looking for the White Rabbit and she fell down the Rabbit Hole...and then she's in Wonderland. Wonderland for me is the WTB and the MEB process.

That's my life...I've followed my husband from Ga to Ft Riley Ks...through 2 deployments and everything else...and now with everything going on in our lives now it feels like we're just falling...we see random pieces of our lives floating by us and other random things that just doesn't make any sense..hopefully one day soon we'll land back in the real world..til then we're wandering around "Wonderland"..we've had to adapt our lives and who we are to struggle through this new life and we've had to learn our way around a new part of the Army.

Wonderland in the Army as I've discovered is a completely different way of have to learn to maneuver this life and deal with more unusual people that if you look at them they could be translated into characters...I've decided that the MEB board people themselves are the Queen of Hearts and they sit in their little room looking at peoples stuff and saying "Off with their heads" when they decide that someone is injured enough to get a better husband is the Mad Hatter for obvious reasons...most of the staff from the WTB kind of remind me of Twiddle Dee and Twiddle Dumb since they seem to repeat themselves over and over and copy what everyone else is doing..just picture about 50 people running around in stripped shirts and shorts with knee socks..pretty humorous. 

The Army is the Jabberwocky ~Beware the Jabberwock, my son! The jaws that bite, the claws that catch!" The Army has her claws in my husband til whenever so we have to be careful of this beast...and hopefully one day he can pick up the vorpal sword and slay the beast til then we hide and avoid it..

Thursday, June 23, 2011

How do you do it??

I've heard that statement many times in the past few years...some people don't believe that I'm still staying with my husband through his drinking..his anger..his ups and downs.

Its pretty simple...I LOVE my husband. Through the hell of deployments, field time and the diagnoses of PTSD, mTBI and his back injury...I couldn't love anyone else as much as I love him.

Somedays it would be easier to run away and not look back...and sometimes I just want to run away. But in the end there is keeps me here day after is what keeps me with him by his side.

Love is not a choice..and I love my crazy husband.

Monday, June 20, 2011

Week 3001...

Ok not really it just feels like its taking that long already, yet another fun filled week of appts and driving. Some days I really like I'm just the taxi driver.
Maybe I should put one of those meters in my tahoe and charge John and Kristi for my driving them all over the place...I might actually bank(wishful thinking)

So anyways, this weekend was Fathers Day weekend and it was a pretty quiet weekend here in our house..spent alot of time trying to clean and do other stuff..I know the excitement of my life is beyond words LOL. But hey thats kind of how I "roll"...vaccum cleaner in one hand and car keys in the other :-)..John got his traditional Fathers Day dinner..shrimp,crab, corn on the cob and potatoes and of course strawberry shortcake yum!

We also heard some sad news though Ft Riley has lost 6 soldiers total during this latest deployment to Iraq...this is the most lives lost in several years from this post. It makes me so mad that all those lives were lost in a senseless attack...what did they lose their lives for? Its gotten to the point where the whole meaning/beginning of this war has been lost...our troops go over to Iraq for what reason now...?!? Its just aggervating to know that this generation of military kids are growing up in a world that has only known violance, deployments and sometimes death in their short lives..

All I can say is being in this lifestyle it teaches you to appericate what you have and live for tomorrow because its not always guaranteed...

Friday, June 17, 2011

Judge Me..

Hi name is Heather. I've been married 3 times, the 1st 2 husbands were not the right men for me and I realized that...but I have some amazing children that came from those marriages and I love my children with my heart and soul...I'm not perfect and I've never claimed to here is your chance to judge me.

I've done stupid things..I've hurt people and I've runaway from problems when I didn't want to deal with them...about 8yrs ago I met my now husband and I learned a lot about love and life...sacrifice and pain and in the end I wouldn't change my life, my mistakes, or anything because its made me who I am..

My husband of almost 7yrs now is a disabled OIF/OEF veteran, he suffers from Severe/Chronic PTSD, mTBI and back injuries...but we make it through each day and we lean on each other for support...we have our ups and downs like most couples do but when you add the disabilities its even more...but I love him more then life itself...

Life has thrown us some huge curve balls in the past 8yrs and somehow we've managed to get through them..together. If someone had told me when I was 16yrs old all the ups and downs and dumb mistakes I was gonna make I would laughed in their face...and again if someone had told me 4yrs ago my husband would be injured and we'd be facing what we're facing now I would laughed...

I admit it I've done my fair share of stupid things and I can't fix them...but here's something I've learned thanks to my own stupidity...Embrace your mistakes, they are what has made you...You.

So feel free to judge me..I don't care anymore because until you've walked in my shoes and lived my life you have no room to judge...and as my mom always says "As you point one finger at someone, you have 3 pointing back you" other words you can accuse and blame someone for shit that's wrong but you need to accept part of the accusation and blame and you are not perfect...

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Songs of Our life...

Someday the stress of life is to much...and I my rhapsody play list of cheesy feel good songs that I remember listening to when I was growing up..everything from Walking on Sunshine to We got the my life saver. In between running around for John's appts and FRG stuff and Kristi's stuff I know I can plug in my phone to the stereo and listen to those songs with the volume turned up and the windows rolled down and feel like I can relax..

I highly recommend that everyone sit down and get a play list put together for days when all hell breaks loose and you need that moment to crank up the volume and roll the windows down in your vehicle and just drive...

And remember to Walk the Dinosaur... :-)

Friday, June 10, 2011

Phew..what a time...

Somedays I sit here and wonder if there is some little troll sitting at a desk up in some little room wondering who it can mess with...I guess it likes us and our family...well things aren't actually to bad lately..just when we get a step foward we get pushed by 2...but we keep on fighting...

John Update~

John had another mri and it's showing his spine is getting thats a stress for us..since the options we have for him is surgical or now we need to figure out what to do to help him manage his pain and figure out what the best option for him is gonna be.

The MEB process is a slow..painful process...up next is the medical narsum..and of course its with a doctor that neither one of us really likes so hopefully its not to bad of a time..and then hopefully by Aug his packet will be shipped off to Ft Lewis Washington..and then everything is completely out of our hands..

Robert Update~

So Robert is up in Ohio for a bit..he got very lucky and got an amazing job offer working with his Uncle Russ so he'll be doing some serious manual labor and working his butt off but he'll make really good money and will have his "fan club" of 2 very cute little girls to follow him around...since he'll be staying with them for the time being..

Kristi Update~

So Kristi Anne is working this summer..between saving her money for a car but she's getting to go to California for a week with a friend of hers and her family so its gonna be kind of weird this will be the 1st time in almost 8yrs John and I'll be alone...Kristi is finding herself being hit on more and more and she's actually got a clever comeback line to the soldiers that want to take her out...she just tells them she has a boyfriend and she's 3 mos pregnant(she's NOT)...LOL...that makes the soldiers run for the hills...gotta love my kid 

And that right now is how life in our household is working...I have frg stuff to work on next sitting down for more then a few mins lately is a wonderful break...

Everyone have a good day~