Our Lives With Post Traumatic Stress Disorder and Traumatic Brain Injury

Thank You!

The events of the past two weeks have spanned from nervousness to rage, panic inducing to exhilarating, frustrating to inspiring. I have gone from feeling nervous about a presentation to feeling rage that it was canceled. A week later, I went from standing at the back of the room at a fundraiser to standing before the same room sharing my story in less than 10 minutes. A few nights later, I went from having a wonderful night to feeling cornered and frustrated in the same amount of time. Yet, what I have learned from this week is far more important than any single event or episode.

First, I have learned that, while I cannot control my initial emotional response to a situation, I can absolutely control my outward reaction. I can keep my cool and stay calm when all I want to do is scream in the face of injustice whether perceived or real. I may not be able to control my facial expressions (I have always had  the worst poker face), and because of this others do know that I am not at all happy, but they won’t hear it from my lips until I’ve calmed down…well…unless I’m cornered and pushed into a response; but that’s just about anyone.

I have also learned that I am stronger than I give myself credit. I am more than capable of standing my ground without resorting to whatever ugliness I’m confronted with at that moment. I am able to maintain at least enough composure to remove myself from a situation until I’ve had a chance to calm down enough to handle it responsibly. Not only that, but I am comfortable standing up for others…more than comfortable, ready. I can overcome the fear of the moment to stand up and share my story with complete strangers…hell, with the world.

But, perhaps the most surprising thing I learned was just how many supporters there are out there. I knew my friends and family would have my back. What I didn’t know was just how many people in this world (literally) would have my back when I made my blog post. I am truly honored to know that there are people out of there who will take time out of their lives to show support and solidarity with someone they had never met. I wish I could thank each and every one of you, but this will have to suffice… Thank you!

As Chauncey and I move forward, there have been several non-profit agencies who have contacted me regarding speaking about this incident and about what Chauncey has done for me. I am honored! I promise I will do my utmost to ensure that I uphold all that each of you have inspired in me. Perhaps this happened for a reason; perhaps it’s time I stood up for more than just myself. Time will tell, but I will keep you posted!

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2 responses

  1. It is us that want to thank you for your service. Its the least we can to is to demand you and other vets get the respect and honor you all deserve. We love our vets. 🙂
    Like you said, maybe its time you stand up for more than yourself. You could do it. Speak out for others who are having the same experiences. People need to be educated . They dont understand PTSD unless they know someone or are related and even then, many still have no knowledge about it. I my self am doing everything I can to learn about it, because my son also has PTSD and TBI. I wont be one of those family members that just tells their relative “why dont you just get over it” or something stupid like that. You are all heroes to me. God Bless you and help you through your struggles.

    October 24, 2012 at 4:27 pm

  2. It’s a daily struggle fighting PTSD. I was misdiagnosed at first as just having to much stress. I guess seeing someone blow there brains out 3 feet away from you or having thinking you could save a 3 year old with the back of there head blow off was just stress to my doc’s.

    I wake up at times talking to my partner who was killed just under a year ago. Does the pain ever end? I can’t even function anymore. Seems like no one understands… Thank you for making this page I look forward to following it.

    Chris

    October 25, 2012 at 3:48 pm