Reply ID - COU BZTL (EDQK)
What an encouragement to read your response to my earlier posting. I know, over a month is not very "blog speed", but must use snail mail as my link.
Now that I know how to reply to specific blog postings it makes things a bit more real. Does that make sense?
You asked, "what I am thankful for"?
I used to be thankful for "BIG" things in life, like a job, good friends, health. There was so much I took for granted. As if I expected the every day things were always going to be a part of my life.
Even during the worst days oversea you always knew the misery you suffered would end and you would return to "the world"
to live a spartan life was a badge of honor and expected in the Marine Corps. You never felt alone or abandoned. Even Marines that didn't get along were still "brothers" in combat that looked out for each other.
In prison I have learned to be thankful for the "small" things each and every day.
Followng more than 3 years in the County Jail seeing the ouside only through bas, razor wire and fencin and surrounded by concrete walls...
I remember nearly crying and collapsing the first day I was able to walk on a grass field with only the sky and wind above m. To breath the fresh air and smell the scents of fresh grass and tres in the air. Even though still in prison, just to take my soes off and sit on a grassy patch. There were 200 other men out there, but I just found a private spot and spent 45 minutes staring up into the sky so I couldn't see any fences, towers, or people and I learned to be thankful for the little things.
If your baby brother is showing the symptoms of PTS you, and he, must know this... It doesn't go away, like a cold, or a broken leg. He will certainly learn to bury it, hide it or avoid it, but it's not just a phase you ignore and it goes away.
Probably the worst indicator is if he begins to isolate himself from others. You can't force him to get involved, but what you can do is help create an environment where he can relax and open up.
No combat Marine is going to simply start talking with a Porter, or a shrink, or even a "peacetime" member of the armed forces.
On the other hand, if you have members of your church who are Vietnam veterans that is a great connection to make.
I would even go as far as spending the moeny needed for him to meet up with 3 or 4 Marine buddies for a "weekend away". Like a fishing trip or something. Yeah, he'll probably get drunk one of those nights, but it's the deeper conversations they will have the next day over coffee or at dinner that the will be able to open up and figure things out. I would even communicate with his buddies beforhand that your concerned with PTS issueshe is showing.
If he's willing to listen and be honest about it give him the address, name and time of the nearest Vet Centre to go visit. Call yourself to find out what programs or meetings they are setting up. Like "job" skills, interviews, G I bill options or anger management classes.
Tell him "Semper" from me
Sergent - Iraq 91 and 04 (A1-Asad, Haditha, hit, Ramadi)
Hope to hear from you again Mommy of 3
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