Wednesday, May 16, 2012

The Forgotton Man

He's in his 60's now.  Or is it his 20's?  He left a piece of himself in a foreign land.  Most of his soul is there, too.  He may never find himself again. Do you know him?

I do.

He's my husband, my son, my friend, my nephew, my grandson.  He's an American Veteran.  He's alone in his grief and anger.  He made a decision to serve his country.  Still only 19 years old, he was sent to foreign soil to fight.  What he saw while at war cannot be described.  How many little kids with bombs in their hands?  How many of his buddies died or were maimed for life?  What was the mental cost when he came home and there were people protesting his service?  When they called him a baby killer?  When even his own family told him he was a loser for fighting that stupid war?

His country has denied him.  He struggles to keep his head above water, his psyche intact.  But then the dreams come and he's back there, stuck with no way home.  He wakes up fighting and may hurt his loved one as he flails.  Next day, the helicopters are searching for a fugitive and he runs to take cover.  He cries out to God for help. 

These men and women have been forgotten.  They are the lowest persons on the totem pole.  The military took them in, taught them skills, paid them low wages and sent them home with no help.  Sure they get VA care up to a point.  But who can they talk to about the real pain that lives inside them?  A psychiatrist whose only experience is education?  He or she has never seen or lived the terror that lives inside a man or woman with PTSD.  

In this country, EVERYTHING seems to be more important than our Veterans. It's an election year.  The men who would be "king" want our votes. They will sell their souls to get them.  They will tell us what we want to hear.  But they WON'T protect our country.  They have their own agenda and a strong military is the last thing they want in their budget of trillions of dollars.

I want peace and safety at home.  I want what our country was founded on.  Do you?  If you do, forget the millions of forwards you get from well meaning friends and relatives.  Write your senator, congressman and the president.  Ask your friends to do the same. 


Carolyn said...

Penny, that was beautifully written. I can't imagine what things are like for military and Veterans and their families- but I thank God for all of you. Well said Sister. If I might suggest, copy and paste this and post it on facebook for people to share, because this message needs to get out. God Bless you, Rob and your family, I think of you guys often and you're always in my prayers.

Bea said...

Hi Penny, well written, The Forgotten Man. Though I know men who have gone to war and returned, I don't know any who have had the PTSD... I've read about it and seen documentaries on TV, and it sounds like this is something that the military needs to consider before sending anyone to war: what to do for the soldiers who experience it when they come home.

I haven't seen your blog until today, guess I just found you, probably through Facebook. I'm glad you and your husband are doing well... looking forward to hearing about your grown children, the birds (do you still have them?).

Have a wonderful week, come by and visit me!!