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Home » Discuss » Archives » General Discussion (1/22-2007 thru 12/14/2010) Donate to DU
No Passaran Donating Member (1000+ posts) Send PM | Profile | Ignore Fri Jul-13-07 04:16 PM
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I cannot tell you how moved I am by all the support that I have received here on DU. I got over 260 responses and more than 100 warm messages in my inbox. Last night something was eating me up and I just took my laptop and started writing, no spell check, no editing (except that minor part about being "gone". I didn't want you to freak out and think I was doing something like that.) I have read them all and this feels like the best medicine ever. Yes, I do know that tonight this might be great but tomorrow might be another struggle but I'm OK with that. I haven't taken my wife out to eat since my midtour leave back in 2005; I don't feel comfortable being in a crowded room always looking behind my back. Try spending 5 hours a day, 365 days out of a year scanning the road with your eyes for any little piece of trash, bottle, old tire, suddenly realizing you missed a spot and you close your eyes thinking if it happens just don't make me know I'm dying. Who would want to die thirsty in Iraq? Back to my evening, well I am taking that first step. I feel like surprising my wife and taking her out to eat tonight. Thank you for that. All of you...

I will leave answering one question: When did I realize that I needed help?

I live in a close military community where on the outside everything is great, swimming pools, barbecues and so on...but we all have our demons that come out at night. Imagine waking up and you feel like you're floating, your head hurts, your neck is so bad you wish there is some Iron Maiden around so you can strap yourself into it. I would hide in the bathtub, water running just sitting there for hours. Sometimes I would get emotional and sometimes I would just be mad at myself for being "weak". One night around midnight, my next door neighbor's wife comes to the door crying. I am immediately out of the bed and over the back lawn to her side door. My neighbor (he was in Iraq twice, different division) is in the bathtub crying, she's running cold water on him and is pleading with me to help him. I just said "God...I don't know what to do". If she only knew that I really had no idea. That I am just like him. It's like a patient treating a patient. I chickened out and ran back saying I will get my wife and she will help. My neighbor and I couldn't look at each other in the eyes until the day he left for his third tour of Iraq. He's still over there, keeping quiet hoping the demons will go away. I think I would have done the same if not for that one night where my wife woke me up and I found myself on top of her treating her like some enemy whose plan to blow me up went wrong and now I had the upper hand, choking her. The next day I went seeking help...the longer I waited the more reluctant I would have been.
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