Monday, October 24, 2011

Story Time part II

It's funny how when you are in the thick of something you don't fully understand what is happening at the time. It is only after everything is said and done that one can look back and piece things together.
So here we are in Panama City FL in the middle of winter. Panama City has a paper mill that stinks up the whole Air Force Base about 90 percent of the time. The other blessed 10% is when the wind is blowing the other way. Our yard is all sand and it is impossible to keep sand out of the house.
I can't pin point the exact moment but ofter months (actually years) of constant upheaval something inside of me broke. It was inevitable I guess. No one can hold up under those kinds of constant strains and pressure for years on end without something giving way. On top of walking pneumonia I was having frequent migraines during this time. I started having them off and on when we first moved to the deep South. I always joked that I was allergic to the South since I am and always will be a Pacific Northwestern girl, and that probably isn't too far from the truth. It is, after all, a humid climate which fosters many nasty varieties of mold.
Anyhow, I had this one particular migraine that lasted for three days. I couldn't stand sound, light or touch. I couldn't eat or sleep, I just buried myself under blankets and literally begged God to make it go away. When a person is suffering from this kind of agony all kinds of dark thoughts grow in the mind. Hubby was busy working 16+ hour days but after the third day he finally made an appointment for me to see the Doc. I don't know how I got myself to the base hospital but I did. It was torture. I was wearing dark sunglasses and choking back tears when I was finally seen. When I think back on this particular military doctor I think of him as my angel. He was so compassionate which was something I had not experienced EVER in military doctors before. He conducted the interview and exam with the lights off and spoke to me very quietly. He prescribed some kind of narcotic and explained that if it would help me sleep then my body could have a chance to re-set. He was so right.
I rarely take pain meds...(just hate the way they make me feel) but of course in this instance I was desperate and followed my Doc's orders. I went home and got some much needed and overdue sleep. I woke up the next day rested and pain free....for the time being.

To be continued..


I think this is going to be a story in several parts so please bare with me. And as for a "happy ending"? To put my readers at ease I think I can safely say there is a happy conclusion to this particular chapter.

And just a short note on the state of our Military. I grew up a "military brat" and with the military being a part of my life for almost all of my life thus far, I think that uniquely qualifies me to say this: The military of today is nothing like the military of my youth. With all the cutbacks and draw downs there is just not enough personnel anymore. Our military is comprised of people who are currently over tasked doing the thankless jobs of many and no budget to do it with. My own husband who spent years training to do a specific job now finds himself doing the work of four other people. No wonder why his days are so long. It's not just my husband, it is everyone I know. People are doing the best they can with what they are given to work with... which is not much. Everyone is stressed out and the consequences of this stress start at the top, roll downhill and then spill over onto spouses like me and then finally onto our children. I will not become bitter about the many unfair things that have happened to us on this crazy journey. I will try to focus on my many blessings. I will try to be compassionate to the circumstances of others knowing myself what it is like to be lonely and frustrated.
But this is my story and I feel compelled to share it.

Come back and take this journey with me....it certainly isn't boring.

5 comments:

Ladytats said...

it truly helps to tell caring people how you feel and what is wrong. happiness is doubled, and sorrows/worries are halved simply by sharing with compassionate friends
love you dear

Anonymous said...

Spouses of military and law enforcement people get PTSD too. It wears a person down something awful.

I hope it helps to be able to share this with all of us...sometimes just getting it out is such a relief! The doctor you talked to sounds like a saint.

Sending lots of hugs your way.

victats@gmail.com said...

Isn't it crazy to look back and think you wouldn't beleive it if you hadn't lived it? I lived in a place a few years ago where the furnace broke down and it took them weeks to fix it. It was the fall so it wasn't too bad but one morning I woke up and it was so cold I could see my breath.

Bree at "Bree's Way" said...

My husband and I too are military, he just retired after 25 years, and we are right there with you and yours. Though he retired, he is now doing the exact same job, but for a contractor, and yes, he is still doing a 4 man job by himself, and we are pulling long hours, we are always worried about the budget and will jobs be cut, etc also, so I really understand what you are talking about. It is very hard on the wives like it is on our husbands, as we live it right with them.

I wish you all the strength you can muster and wish you good health also, make time to rest, and know your friends are always here for you to vent and share with :) you are never alone, even online :)

Bri.

snowy said...

So, I keep looking for part three, and it's not there. :(
I know how hard it can be to keep blogging when real life and health issues seem determined to throw you to your knees, but I wanted to say that even though I haven't commented that doesn't mean that I am not interested. I was fascinated when you shared a bit about your childhood, and I am still wondering about how this all fits together.
I won't say I can understand...my life is a whole world away, but I do feel that listening to the stories of others enriches my life and helps me to remember that we all have a "back story" that affects the way we live today.
I imagine that the relationship you have with Picadilly has made you wonder about your own mother, and the somewhat troubled relationship she had with you? Eh, bien, this is meant to be a comment, not a full blown essay, and I will leave it there, but do carry on when you can. *hugs* for all the family. :)