Welcome to PTSD land!

I was in a war. My soul, mind, and body came home rearranged and different. I was not the same person I was when I left. Which to some, especially to my parents, was a startling realization and adjustment. But really do you want to be the same person you were at age 20 when you are age 30?

However, the change wasn’t over 10 years. It was 11 and a half months in Iraq. I was shot at by small arms fire and rocket propelled grenades. Bombs blew up around me in the form of mortars and improvised explosive devices. My job was medical support for the convoys traveling from base to base with supplies. In other words, I was in the front lines of the Iraq War in 2004.

My sense of safety is nonexistent, and I am always waiting for the sh*t to hit the fan. I know the world isn’t a safe place. I know the government lies, and I know I don’t trust people to do the right thing. All those beliefs earned me a diagnosis of post-traumatic stress disorder. In addition, people asking or wondering why I don’t just “get over it”, “deal with it”, “leave it in the past” and move forward as if I wanted intrusive thoughts, reoccurring nightmares and flashbacks, as if I had control over my human reaction to extraordinary circumstances.

Sound familiar? Do you feel safe? Do you trust people to wash their hands, stay home, and social distance? Aren’t you waiting for the next news broadcast saying more sh*t hit the fan?! Welcome to PTSD land! How about you get over it? Let it go!