End of May. Yes, still here...
Alot has happened in seven months. Last fall I had a dream that a young man was trying to get me and my husband's attention as he stood behind a tall glass window. Every now and then I would glance his way and then look back at the very busy world, my husband never even noticing. But when I woke up I knew exactly what that young man was trying to tell me. My husband and I agreed I would go off the pill and my anti-depressants, and six weeks later I was pregnant. I knew it would be a little boy- I knew who he was, who he is. Nobody was very surprised when the ultra sound confirmed it- just excited.
Now my husband and I are trying to decide between the names Soren (for the Norwegian 'Sorenson' side of me) or the name Creed Christian. I like both names but honestly, the Ranger's Creed and the Soldier's Creed are very cool and my husband was friends with a SF soldier who went by that name and I always wanted to name my son something pertaining to the past decade of our army life. Baby is due this summer. Looks like he will be a Madigan baby.
My husband was one of the twelve soldiers who went to Walter Reed Medical Center and one of the six who had his diagnosis changed back to PTSD after Forensics Psychology tried to change it to adjustment disorder for the Med Board. I called the Secretary of the Army last fall and talked to his main secretary about what was happening here at Madigan. I told him a bunch of wives were getting ready to go to CNN because we didn't have any other options and that something really wrong was happening here at Ft Lewis- that soldiers weren't being taken care of concerning PTSD and the Med Board. He gave me his email address and told me to have the other wives email thier husband's issues to him and he would look into it. I quickly called the omsbudsman here on post and told her to get the soldiers together and gave her the email to give to them. A few weeks later the Army Surgeon Generals office called and said they would be taking over.
After the holidays my husband flew to Walter Reed and was tested for 2 days straight to see if he had PTSD. They called my father in law with questions, and they called me for over an hour with questions about my husband. It was hard to relive the painful past during the interview but I knew it would be worth it. To this day my husband is being treated for PTSD and I am learning to live with it. I have also learned to be strong. Though certain days are very rough and hard for me to be around him because of the PTSD, there are days when I have a glimpse of the husband I knew- the one who loved me and would do anything for me before Iraq- and it's those days that make it worth it. I have my own therapist who helps me deal with the past and we also see a marriage therapist. I have to say, I didn't realize the magnitude of all this until I had professionals thanking me for doing what they wanted to do, but couldn't out of fear of repercussions from the army. I know I played just a small part in all this, as there were many involved, but I really believe God ultimately stepped in and now many more soldiers are going to get the help they need and deserve.
After my husband returned from Iraq, after I learned of the many life altering changes he had endured in Mosul -including being blown up, fire fights, taking others lives, being snipered at, and a cowardice betrayal from his own side that almost cost him his life, after he changed into someone who scared me and hurt me and abandoned me and our little girls and who tried to hurt himself and drink himself into oblivion...I could hardly write in this blog anymore. I could hardly make sense of anything anymore. I was just trying to survive. I no longer knew what was normal or okay in a marriage... The war was so young that PTSD and TBI was little known and we didn't get the help we desperately needed, not until after we came back to Ft. Lewis and even then it was a terrifying time. I somehow wrote in this blog a little though I think I just skimmed over things and tried to write about simple little life things. I don't know. I won't go back and read it. It still hurts to much to read in those time periods. I wrote alot of drafts but didn't publish very many out of fear of putting it all out there for the world to see. This is the most I've written in a very long time and I'm still not even sure of what's ahead in life for us. At least now I'm able to breathe again.