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)
You were never there. You never existed. Your war will never be acknowledged or validated. How can you hope to find healing? You live with the reality of your experiences. Your losses. Only those there know. Only those who were there will ever know. Only you will know their names. You can't walk into a … Continue reading Special Forces: How Do You Heal When You Don’t “Exist”?
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 sits in you like a cold stone. Immovable. Heavy. Part of you. Combat guilt. Survivor's guilt. Shame. Failure. Self-loathing. Self-hate. That weary surrender to the belief that you deserve to be punished. Because you know you do. You know it as truth in your soul. Good exists for others. You're grateful and happy for … Continue reading Combat Guilt, Forgiveness and Mercy
I just spoke to a friend, another veteran, and my heart bleeds for the guy. He is a Vietnam era vet. He put almost 30 years in the Marine corps starting in 1966. He went on to work for three lettered government agencies. His story is impressive, but not uncommon. His life is the stuff … Continue reading When You Don’t Believe Forgiveness Applies to You
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…
Warriorhood -- the status of being a warrior. Warrior -- a person who is called to defend others; to live by a code of honor and ethics in pursuit of the greater good; to lead the non- warrior class in living up to the ideals of the society. These definitions are my own, but I … Continue reading Find a Fight You Can Believe In Again
It all adds up. Accumulates. Pain, trauma, losses. Anger, resentment, guilt. Buries You underneath. You watch your Self vanish, become unrecognizable. And wonder if you're too far gone to be saved. Is there such a thing as too far gone to be saved? You're tired and it never seems to get better. Your life is … Continue reading Too Far Gone to Be Saved?
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
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!?!?