I burst into unexpected tears standing in the dry soil of my flower garden, watering the wilting zinnias. Afghanistan has fallen and suddenly all the sacrifice, all the pain, all the fight of the last two decades has been called into question. What was it all for? I thought about a young sergeant, gaunt and … Continue reading Afghanistan falls. What was it all for?
By Joe DeCree One of the problems with Memorial Day is that it is so hard to get our heads around the complexities of what we feel about it. We are glad to be home (some more than others). We are glad we did our job, again some more than others. We might be glad … Continue reading Memorial Day: Make This the New Normal
I come to this place more times than not, words stuck tight in my throat. There is so much felt, deeply, and I trip and stumble over words that might possibly express what's in my heart. For you. Words fail. You wait, faces upturned, eyes on me, hearts hungry for the offering that will satiate, … Continue reading You Are Holy Power (read this if you’re about to give up)
Not having much libido or having issues with sex is actually pretty normal for combat veterans. There's many reasons why. Meds, relationship stresses and tensions, exhausted bodies and adrenal glands -- all potential causes. But there's one that you may not have considered and it's an important one. Because it not only impacts your sex … Continue reading Warriors: The Hidden Reason You May Not Feel Like Having Sex
The words do not pour forth; they catch in my breasts, clutch at my throat, refuse to be told. I can’t write of finding your body, your warm blood melting the cold snow, the fixed gaze of your eyes forever staring into darkness. That same darkness I was not able to save you from. I … Continue reading I Love You Still
It's that hollow numbness, the sense that you are already dead, the complete lack of desire to go on, the craving to be gone, to be done here. The feeling that you are nothing more than an empty husk blown about by gusts of wind. There’s nothing left of you. You're not who you used … Continue reading When You Can’t Be a Warrior Anymore…Is There a Reason to Go On?
Joe DeCree and I are talking about Memorial Day -- how he handles it and insight on how to move through this sacred time. Joe: Memorial Day: Is there a worse day on the calendar? Gosh, I feel like I want to go to bed all day and hide. Unfortunately, it is inevitable. It comes … Continue reading Combat Vets: On Grief and Getting Through Memorial Day
The rain drips off the peak of my cap; Speckles my vision. The marching band plays in G Major, but I hear only minor chords. Old Glory passes by and I make the automatic, but heartfelt, salute. I attend the ball games and barbeques But I am not really there. I want to leave so … Continue reading Memorial Day
The part of you they take with them, that hollowed out spot in your chest, that sting and numbness and dazed acceptance -- it’s still there, still fresh, still real. It is never not a part of you...ever again. We are changed by each death. Even though life is given again in the next lifetime, … Continue reading This Memorial Day…
It's that heaviness deep in your chest. That gaping void where part of who you were before is permanently gone. It's the sense of having done things that can never be undone, a burden of being responsible for having taken life and for having lost it. A burden you know is yours to carry. It's … Continue reading When You Feel As If You Don’t Belong
One of my Soldiers learned today that he lost a soldier to suicide. One of my Marines attended the funeral this week of a brother who went Home early. I'm sure there are many more of you who are dealing with this kind of loss right now. And many of you who are contemplating killing … Continue reading Suicide: Stop Believing the Lie That No One Cares
Okay, so the words themselves mean the same thing in your mind. Fucked up. Pain. Shit. Issues. Doesn't matter what you call it, right? Who cares? What if how you think of it is keeping you stuck? No, I'm not being "a writer" here and picking on words. On the surface, it doesn't matter how you refer to the … Continue reading Combat PTSD: F***ed Up or Wounded?