Tuesday, December 27, 2011

Week 2~Dec 26

So level 2 turned out to be a bit frustrating and it wasn't really anyones fault. The husband started doing his program but due to the servers having problems he had to restart a few times and then couldn't finish a few of the modules due to the servers having to rest. I'm sure due to the holidays that was the problem. Also we did find out the hard way that there was no peer to peer chat yesterday either due to the holiday so that was kind of frustrating for the husband since he really felt the need to connect to someone due to the holiday stress. But once again due to the holidays its completely understandable.

Level 2 is discusses how to build the skills to identify and manage negative thoughts/feelings in his life and how to manage them better. It once again included the interactive video and the husband seems to like that due the fact that he is involved with the program its just not some video telling him to how to fix things it actually helps him figure it out and gives him a chance to be directly involved with the solution. But once again due to the holiday he didn't get to finish level 2 yet so that is what he'll be doing today.

We are still very impressed with the amount of information that his program has. The good thing is each program is geared towards each individual and not just lumping everyone into one group since each PTSD case is different, each experiance is different from soldier to soldier so that is a huge help. It makes my husband feel like this is HIS program and its meant to help him. Not try to fit him into a round hole when he's a square peg so to speak. He is actually looking forward to working on each level weekly and with the weekly reminders he knows what day he has to work on it and so forth. And once again the option to be able to put the laptop down and walk away if he needs that small break is there for him.

So hopefully today he can finish this level, connect with a peer coach and to start applying what he's learned this week into real life.

Here is the link to the Vets Prevail website.


Monday, December 26, 2011

Twas the Night before Christmas

A friend shared this...so I figured I'd post it. Hope everyone had an amazing Christmas!

T'was the night before christmas, and all through the FOB
Not a creature was stirring, not even a working dog.
All but the night's guards were asleep in their CHUs
Dreaming of ETSing and no more ACUs.

When suddenly above the peaks, a roving guard did see
a bright red light that filled his heart with glee.
for he knew the red beacon belonged to a nose
of Rudolph who led Santa to visit the Joes.

The guard called the TOC, to pass on his sighting
Of Santa's visit in the midst of all the fighting.
Grunts and POGs arose from their slumber
To give Jolly Saint Nick a greeting by the numbers.

But suddenly another flash lit up the night.
A rocket from insurgents in search of a fight.
For the Taliban knew not the joy of the season
And sought to cause chaos without logic or reason

Their rocket flew true, and struck the red sleigh
A cowardly attack for which they'd soon pay.
Santa and his reindeer crashed on a high slope
The landing was hard, but the troops held out hope

The whole base was now on high alert.
Everyone hoped Santa hadn't been hurt.
QRF deployed, to retaliate with haste
And to the crash site, the SAR birds did race

presents lay strewn about the crash scene
but Santa and his reindeer were nowhere to be seen
Over hill and dale, the soldiers did look
Inside every cave, cranny, and nook

After an hour of searching, the troops thought with distress
Santa had been captured, the night was a Taliban success
But the troops didn't give up their perilous mission
They would not rest until they found Santa's position

For every troop saw Santa as one of their own
And they wouldn't rest until they brought the man home.
When finally word came as a red signal flare
And every troop knew Santa was in despair

From the Eleven Bravos, salty as dogs
To the Forty Two Alphas stuck at the FOB
To the Sixty Eight Whiskeys, aid bags in hand
To the Ninety Nine Zulus, hidden in the sand

And the Eighty Eight Mikes, Thirty Five Mikes and Foxes
And the Ninety Two Yankees with their stacks of boxes
The Thirty One Bravos, Thirteen Deltas too.
Soldiers of all MOSes knew just what to do.

They loaded up their MRAPs and M-ATVs
And spun up the Blackhawks, Chinooks and 64D's
The whole Brigade pushed up the hill
Powered by a sheer force of will

When finally they reached Santa's location
And laid down cover fire for his evacuation
They loaded the man on a CASEVAC chopper
and gave the Taliban an ass whoopin' good and proper

Before dawn it was clear the battle was won
The surviving enemy had decided to run
Santa survived the night with nary a scratch
The troops joked that he too earned a combat patch

He chuckled with joy as he boarded a new sleigh
Then somberly said "Soldiers, I must be on my way"
"Like all of you, I have to put mission first,
Even after this night that was surely my worst,

"But what I do can't hold a candle to yours,
For I've never been deployed on multiple tours,
And I'm only away from Mrs. Claus for one night,
And I don't wake up every day expecting a fight,

"And I know your job is hard, tiring and tough,
And the conditions you live in to be truly rough,
And so for Christmas, I bring a special gift,
That should ensure your vict'ry to be swift."

And with those words, he departed the base,
With many FOBs to go, he picked up the pace.
The soldiers gathered 'round the small present, bewildered.
And wondered what advantage Santa Claus had delivered.

The base commander unwrapped the package with care
And then for a moment, the General simply stood there
For the package contained an old parchment scroll
That the officer carefully began to unroll.

He read for a moment, mumbling aloud.
Then he turned to his forces, whom had formed a crowd.
"Merry Christmas, Soldiers," he said with scroll in hand,
"I'm holding the Naughty list for all of Afghanistan!"

Monday, December 19, 2011

Week One is done...

So as many of y'all know the husband started the Vets Prevail program. Well today was the 1st lesson and all in all it went well..its kind of nice being able to do this from the comfort of our home and in a safe environment where there is no real pressure on him. If he feels the need to get up and walk around or even leave and come back to the lesson he can do that.

I have to say I was pleasantly surprised by how well put together it was and how there is always Peer Support available which is great so my husband can connect with other Vets who have gone through the same things as him. He actually got on the chat and talked with someone for a good 20 mins which is something he wouldn't normally do, so that was a great sign.

I have to recommend though that when you do your lessons that you do it in a somewhere quiet location so you can really focus on the videos and aren't distracted. Also its a great resource for the spouses/caregivers to be involved with because we can use some of the lessons they are talking about..

The husband says the page has a lot of information..and he likes the fact that you can set goals and it will help you keep them. And you can schedule each lesson to work with your schedule...he also likes the fact they send reminder texts for those guys that have memory issues (like him) and he did enjoy the chat part of the page.

Here is their link...we both highly recommend it to anyone who is a Vet.


Friday, December 16, 2011

Where do I fit in?

Have you ever felt that there is no place for you in the world? Like you just don't fit in anywhere...I've been feeling that way for years. Where do I fit in with society, which my family and even my friends.

I hate the looks of pity I get from people when they find out that the husband is injured and the looks I get when they find out he has PTSD. It seems that PTSD has made me out of place with everyone. If he was missing a limb it would be different we wouldn't be given those looks or comments because then that justifies to people that he was injured and there for its understandable for him to have PTSD or even depression. Now let me say that I would never ever wish bodily harm on anyone, we know guys that have lost limbs and they are amazing men who have overcome their losses and keep improving themselves and the world around them.

Somehow PTSD has defined who we are...how we live our lives and how we interact with people. PTSD has made me question my own self worth because I don't feel like I fit in anywhere..I can't just pick up and go somewhere for a few hours without worrying and making sure that everything back home is fine..I can't feel like its OK to enjoy some down time because I worry and then usually something does happen..so the people I once considered friends have long since abandoned me and the few people that have stuck with through this have a hard time understanding my life at times and I don't blame them.

I don't recognize the person I see in the mirror anymore..she is a shell of a person that has long been gone, this person I see now is consumed by PTSD and the effects it has on not only herself but her entire family. I really hate that I don't belong anywhere...and I don't fit in with society and the normalcy of life...

Tuesday, December 13, 2011

Something new...

So this week has been both a bit of stress and excitement. The husband is going to be starting a new program online through the Vets Prevail page and I'm super excited about it but kind of nervous.This program is a free program that will help with reintegration and resilience for both Veterans and soldiers. After 2 hospitalizations and countless meds and hours of therapy we get to that point where we're hitting that brick wall again and the backward spiral happens again. I will be blogging weekly about his progress and our thoughts and opinions. We are hopeful that with this under his belt he can have new options in case his PTSD levels get back to a higher level...I do know that Vets Prevail has a lot of wonderful options for our returning vets and veterans from other conflicts. And we're both open to try something to help him..and hopefully with his experience we can help another soldier or family feel like they're not alone on this road...we have felt alone and have had to reach out for help and now we can be that help for another soul. Just remember that you are not alone out there..there are so many of us going through the same battles and we need to stick together and support both the soldier and the family.

Here is the Vets Prevail website...please share it with a Veteran or soldier


Thursday, December 8, 2011

Living with PTSD

I had to repost this...please read and share


-Remember that my war experiences changed me. Having PTSD was not my choice, but I have to live with it.

-PTSD is real. I'm not stupid, crazy, or "faking it".

-Realize that going to crowded or noisy places makes me uncomfortable.

-Don't get upset with me when I can't remember something. My memory problem is real.

-Don't take it personally or think I am mad at YOU when I might explode or am short with you, or when I get quiet or confused. Be patient with me, it does not mean that I don't love you.

-I care about you, I do not want to hurt or harm those that I love. If I am threatening or out of control, it might be best to just leave me alone until I can calm down.

-Please respect my need for quiet. It is important to me.

-Realize that I have unpredictable highs and lows- good and bad days. And you do too.

-I need you to understand that holidays and "anniversaries" are tough times for me.

-I feel overwhelmed when you ask me a lot of questions. I will talk to you when I can.

-I may never share certain details with you because you have no way of truly understanding everything that happened. Respect that.

I feel random

WOW! Who ever said "God only gives you as much as he thinks you can handle" needs to be slapped...ok not really but I'm so tired of hearing that...when does enough get to be enough? We scratch and claw our way to make a slightly normal life..and it still doesn't work. What the hell?? Can we get a break for at least the holidays???

We got our application submitted for the Federal Recovery Coordinator program because husband's case manager not doing his job...really how hard is it to call and set up referral information and manage to make sure he gets his meds..apparently pretty freakin hard.

I'm not ready for Christmas...usually by now my house is a giant Christmas tree exploded in a million pieces. Not this year...I'm so burnt out from the past few months that its just not happening this year. I got the tree up and some decorations but thats about it. I need a few elves to help me get stuff done that feel the holiday spirit I think its just left our house...

I think that if things had been simple we'd all be less stressed out but it hasn't and I highly doubt it will be..if you can't tell I'm slightly less postive then usual..I have no motivation to do anything..my fight has left my body today and I don't know where to find it. Everytime I turn around its another brick wall that I have to scale and fight so we can get things done..and I'm just tired of fighting.
I've hit that offical "I don't care" phase of the MEB/WTB stupidity and hope someone can help...

*sigh*...if someone has a few million dollars laying around and feel the need to send it to me let me know..*smile* that might help a bit