Today was pretty normal until I checked the mail. In the mail was forms and documents that Veteran Affairs wants me to complete for my claim for PTSD. I totally understand it’s purpose, but boy does it open doors. In the documents they asked me to describe the specific details of the “stress incident” (which is their words). I need to make sure to include the locations, where I was stationed etc, and to make sure that I have a detailed account of how it has affected me. Then it goes into if you disclosed to anyone a written statement can be provided to the VA. They also ask if i have any personal diary or journal entries that may indicate what happened or how I have been affected. Although all of this information is ultimately to my benefit to provide for my, it still seems overwhelming. This fear grew within my head that I have to prove that this happened. “What if they don’t believe me?. Although I know what happened some of the old doubts and fears mingle within me.
Initially I was ready to go and ready to tackle this project and get it over with, but not much later after I started the emotions began to flood. Although I have told and recounted my story many times and I have spoken to large crowds; this seems much different. The rehashing of my story is different because in a way I have to convince them, it is different because I have to try to remember some of the details that I don’t usually discuss. When I sat there trying to do this form I felt like I was reliving it, and I can remember the words said to me, and my emotions. I know that these intense emotions will assist me in completing this task, but it definitely feels like a sucker punch. It also serves as a reminder that no matter how long it has been or how much I have progressed that I can still feel this intense emotion. One likes to think that it will diminish completely to just a sad thought here and there, and it will be that majority of the time, but it only takes a trigger to unleash the dam.
So I keep breathing. Take this one step at a time and see this as a opportunity to process different emotions and hurts as they come up. I will take this time to pray, to write and to listen to what God is saying, which is the hard part. I guarantee that as the emotions flood the more I will want to say, but I need to be still. First and foremost to give God the opportunity to let His love shower on me and let his grace be enough. So for now I just breathe.