What Can A Vet Do?
Accept that you will have down days. When I exited the Navy on an early,
but honorable discharge, I was concerned enough about my mental stability
that I went to the college shrink the first semester. He told me I was a
normal neurotic who would become psychotic if I worried about my neurotic
moments. He told me to prepare two "bucket lists", one for when I am down
and one when I up.
Accept that you will have down days. For me, I schedule downdays on Wednesday
and Sunday. The other days I take stimulants (coffee, tea, West Virginia
meth (Mountain Dew) and an anti-narcoleptic. It you take simulants every
day they will become less effective with you eventually destroying your guts
Accept that you will have down days. Keep a diary to record and marinate
your thoughts and fears.
Accept that you will have down days. Keep a diary to flip your fears into
funny self-depracating jokes which fellow vets will enjoy most of all.
Accept that you will have down days. Learn a musical instrument even if you
cannot carry a musical note in dump truck.
Accept that you will have down days. Learn to laugh when you sense a problem,
fear or frustration. Problems will not grow and last if you first laugh at
them. The word "problem" is Latin for "better dancing" (pro
ballet/ballein). Every problem is an opportunity to package the solution
to sell or give to others. You have only one life, treat each problem as
an opportunity to dance better on that one stage which is your life.
Accept that you will have down days. Everyone has down days. Maybe vets have
worse days than the average American (I think so). But vets do not have it
as bad as the average human being alive today. Remember to compare yourself
only to yourself. Are you going forward? Are you more creative and
self-sufficient today than yesterday but less than tomorrow? Remember the
Indian saying of "I cried because I had no moccassins until I saw the man
who got no feet." Or, as I like to day, "I cried because I had no pants until
I saw the man who got no ass."
Accept that you will have down days. Make the most of them. The richest people
in life are those who overcome the greatest obstacles. (The richest people
are not the Wall Stealers who have decapitalized America for money from greed.)
Accept that no one will help you in end with your mental challenges but you
alone which requires useful, creative values. Remember, morality without
practicality is immoral. Choose your faith and religion wisely if you want
to build a house of lasting happiness instead of a house of deepening depression.
Define and set one or two down days a week. Know you are not alone. Know
you are in good company. Abraham Lincoln ... Winston Churchill.
When available, shape your experiences into short stories, poems, songs or
encouragement for the PTSD brainbee.
Don't kill yourself for yourself. Die for a good cause, at least.