Our War: Day 43-20100912

Cara Schingeck

Tacoma, United States

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87 views as of June 24, 2011

June 23, 2011—Update resources for suicide prevention:

“Your benefits. Your community. Your safety net.” Joint Services Support (J9) website

Joint Services Support for all soldiers, veterans and military families in Washington State

“The J9
manages resiliency programs that provide Washington’s Warriors, Veterans, and Family Members support services that enhance their well-being and promote their productive military participation.” J9 – Joint Service Support Directorate Capabilities Brief

J9 provides program management and coordination, resource synchronization, strategic planning, Partner Relations, marketing, contract monitoring, and service delivery under one roof.” COL Mike Johnson,
director of Joint Service Support (J9)

Day 43 is a drawing inspired by a story of a United States Soldier who made it home who was a friend, a fellow soldier, a family member of Day 40 soldier (this is the last part of this story for Day 40 Soldier). I made this drawing in ink and mixed-media on bond paper.

The soldier I made of portrait of today suffers from PTSD or Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder
He did not realize he had any of the symptoms until he went to the firing range upon his release from service at the firing range.

While at the firing range he no longer could tolerate the loud noises, he began to see images of the day his fellow soldier, his friend, died. He felt responsible in some way for not saving him, for coming home, for surviving, for not doing something to save the life of his fellow soldier who is in fact closer to some than most family members.

He still lives with guilt, remorse, questions that he feels, believes he will never be able to answer, he feels haunted and by the sight of his friends eyes once so vibrant with life go cold-even though he knew he could do nothing to save him he continues to feel guilt, even though the bullet pierced the heart and there was nothing to do but watch the final seconds of life slip away.

This portrait I have drawn of a soldier is of a man – a veteran of our war, is of a person, a veteran of our war who lives with guilt that he cannot seem to ever believe that he will forgive himself for what he could have done, should have done, might have done, why he is still alive, why did he come home – so many unanswered questions that he feels there is no way to find an answer. Today he unloads his weapon, leaves the range, and seeks help because he knows now that he does have PTSD.

He knows now that there are resources for him to find some way to find some answers or something close so he can keep going. He has made it this far, he made it home, he survived. Please, let there be a reason.

Here is one important resource…

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