Friday, June 15, 2012


I'm nervous about posting this. Here are things that I've never told anyone, here I am bearing my inner thoughts and fears. Talking about this may help and that's why I feel I have to. Even if no one reads this it will not be a wasted effort. I have given words to my fears. And words cannot hurt me.

Things have been rough for me for a while and I finally decided to get some help for it. I've had a hard time sleeping for years and have some residual effects from my deployments. It was finally the right time to try and work something out. Going on 3 deployments to a war zone is bound to change someone, and it has changed me, that is very obvious. I used to be optimistic to the point of annoyance, ask the people that know me. Now I find that I am very cynical. I don't really like that. I also have a hard time enjoying the things I used to do. Just look through this blog. I don't write as much and my photography definitely has suffered. The joy just isn't there.

I realized that a lot of that has to do with a lack of sleep. Falling asleep isn't a problem for me, staying asleep is. I toss and turn all night and wake up several times in the few hours that I am able to actually sleep. It's exhausting, and has become completely unbearable as of late. I'm tired when I wake up and am tired throughout the day. I don't know why I have such a hard time sleeping. I didn't have any traumatic experiences while deployed that would cause nightmares, or so I thought.

I'm seeing a counselor. One of the things we've discussed is my deployments. Talking about those years I came to an understanding and it was all because of one question: Did you feel safe at any time while on deployment? No, how could I have? Combine that with the other experiences that I've been through and that adds up quickly. I didn't feel safe then. I don't feel safe now. I live on a base with live fire ranges. I know it's irrational. I know that there are no enemies trying to kill me here, but I feel like a target. I feel like one of those rounds will hit me on day. I hear the explosions and gun fire and think that the next one will come through the roof of my house or where I work. I feel vulnerable no matter I am. It's hard living like this.

I am also seeing a psychiatrist. I'm taking some medication to help me with my sleep and anxiety issues. Yesterday was the second time taking those medications. I went to bed around midnight and woke up around 8 AM. I felt rested, and I don't remember tossing and turning last night, nor did I wake up. It will take a while for the anxiety medication to start to work-4 to 6 weeks-but I'm hopeful that it will help. It's a start at least.


  1. Hey dude, I always try and read your posts, even though I am a bloody lazy sod when it comes to commenting.

    Just wanted to let you know that I have read this and I am also hopeful that once you get the sleep part of you fixed, all the other things will start to feel better.

    1. Thanks Claire, I'm hopeful too. Can't give up now.