We spend a lot of time thinking that we need to let go of the past. "Let it go". "Move on." "Leave it behind you." "Try not to think about it." "That's not who you are anymore." These are phrases that are well intentioned and often eventually work for broken hearts, break-ups, job losses, and … Continue reading When the Past Feels More Real Than the Present
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?
From the time I was five, I have lived with a body that subjects me to pain. Severe headaches at age five, joint pain that kept me on the sofa at age nine. Then an adolescence of debilitating fatigue, sensitivity to sound and temperatures, allover muscle and joint aches, flu-like symptoms. It would last for weeks, months … Continue reading PTSD: When No One Believes Your Pain is Real
You come home from combat angry. Stupid shit sets you off. You lash out at people you care about only to see pain and fear flash through their confused eyes. Sometimes you start fights on purpose. Usually, you just react. A stupid driver makes you snap, before you know it you're in a blind rage. In … Continue reading I Came Back from Combat, Why the #@!% Am I So Angry!?!?
The situation with ISIS is beyond infuriating. Their actions are designed to incite rage and blatantly offend the warfighter and the goodness within you. Their presence, however, is not surprising. In the big picture of the world, they are a miniscule force, creating havoc in a place that, for the most part, no one in … Continue reading Stop Letting ISIS Control You
It lines your inside, this presence you've become so familiar with that you're not sure where you end and it begins. It's just... there. Always there. Images. Scents. Sounds. Fear. Memories. Pain. You try to shut it out. It returns. You lock it up inside. It gets out. It wants you to stare into its deceiving eyes. And when you … Continue reading What to Do When You Just Can’t Talk About It
You came back different. Changed. You can't really describe it, but you're not yourself. Not who you used to be. You're angry. Blow up at stupid shit. Lack other emotions. Feel numb. Tired. Disinterested in stuff that used to be interesting. Tense. Sleepless. Have nightmares that scare the hell out of you. Forget shit. Can't … Continue reading PTSD, TBI, Sex and Relationships
You're thinking about it. Ending your life. Stopping the pain. Doing it because you think it's best for those around you. You're tired of your shit being the cause of other people's pain. Tired of fighting demons. Tired of... just tired. If you are in imminent risk of ending your life, please call 911 or the … Continue reading Before You Kill Yourself, Read This
We don't talk about this often, but there is a very real fear in many of you that says if you heal, you'll lose your identity as a warfighter. Fear that healing will cut the ties you have to who you were, who you are and who you want to be. Along with it, is … Continue reading If I Heal, Will I Lose My Warfighter Identity?
One of the most challenging aspects combat vets face when coming home is the gap between who they are now and who their loved ones expect them to be. Warriors say that you can't translate much of what they've been through, because there is no substitute for being there. And there is deep truth in … Continue reading Things Combat Vets Wish They Could Tell You | Part 1
If you haven't read Part 1, please do. This is part of a discussion designed to help combat vets help others understand them better. If this article resonates with you, pass it along to a loved one. Here is what I hear from vets and what they are often unable to share with others: 1.) … Continue reading Things Combat Vets Wish They Could Tell You | Part 2
How do you see yourself? Don't let your wounds and fears and feeling stuck in this perpetual hell of the unknown take away your identity. Don't let it erase the truth that you are incredibly strong, resilient, tenacious, brave. Don't let a diagnosis replace who you are. You are not your diagnosis. You are not … Continue reading A Warrior’s Call to Courage After War