Living With PTSD – Home Sweet Home

Learning To Live with my PTSD!

start of my PTSD
My goal for these next few posts, or however many it may take me, is to work through my issues. To relive and sort out what happened and share my story along the way. I also hope that I can help others living with any level of PTSD in silence. That they will find the courage to do that same and remove their veiled mask of PTSD! #BreakTheStigma
 
Some may find the following to be graphic or triggering to read. I am being honest and open!
 
After getting the ok to roll out and head to the PSS, or as we would call it Fort Langley. We were to make one stop on the way there again, this time to a PSS between Wilson and Langley. More of a meet and greet, let them know we will be close to their AoE, and what we were doing. You could see some of them snicker when we told them what we were doing. At first I thought these guys were disgruntled and pissed from their time here. I would find out, towards the end of tour what that snicker was for.

Home sweet Home?

 
We pulled up to the PSS, which was no bigger than 100 feet by 100 feet, or less. It had a waddy, or ditch, on the left and right of it as you face the entrance. The front was flush with the road, which made it a high risk for possible VBIED attacks. The back was flat and open for a long distance, and filled with cattle. There was a tall tower, added to the existing area. It was middle front, and was high enough to see all sides of the PSS. One other watchtower was on the back right, but was only used at night time.
 
Home Sweet Home!

Welcome to cribs Afghanistan!

We had to park our vehicles across the road from the fort, which was also next to the burn pit for the fort. It was still smoldering and smelling of shit as we unloaded out kit into the fort.
 
As you enter the fort, you come into a sort of airlock style area. It was about 10 by 10, and cramped. They showed us which rooms were open for the taking, which held anywhere from 4 to 6 people. I grabbed one that was the closest to the front, not sure why?
 
We had a kitchen, which consisted of a fridge that held water, and not very cold to be frank. there was one table in the middle of this, small room, with benches on each side. A very tight room to eat. We had some naphtha stoves and a bbq barrel to cook with. They showed us the small gym they had made with what they had. Jerry can barbells, a bench that was 2x4s and plywood, but it worked.
 
This “home” was going to be cozy, and tight quarters. Even more so, once we learned the only bathroom was an area of the fort that had a snake somewhere in it, and we had a bucket! We would setup a field toilet, a bucket with a bag in it and a toilet seat cover. Very high class to say the least.
 
So that shit we smelt burning, yep it was actual shit burning!

First Nights!

Starting right away we were on sentry duty. Paired with one of the existing soldiers there to explain our arks, and any thing else we may need to know. I remember being on duty at 3am, looking over the landscape in the quiet night. Off in the distance you could hear a LAV 3 firing, duu duu duu, the 25 mike mike firing off at some unseen assailment. We turned up the radio to see what was being said about the situation. There was a night time operation to hit a possible enemy location, turns out it was possible.

Learning The Ways 

We watched out over the grounds, and listened to the radio shooting the shit. The fort currently was being used as a police substation, but now would be a home base for our rag tag group. At the moment the troops here were tasked with patrolling the road from their area to the highway twice a day. Something we were more than happy to continue for them. He told me about the farmer across the field, how they had helped his children when they were sick. Since doing this he had always brought them intel on what was happening. We hoped to keep this relationship going.
 
Shift finished with no action other than the distant activities. I crashed and caught a few hours sleep before we were set to wake for a patrol.
 
We were to meet the locals!

Almost!

The next morning we woke up at day break, had some breakfast, and got ready for the day. Myself and the other security guys were to head out with the morning patrol to see how they did it. Along with that on the way back we would be heading into the local community to meet some prominent members.
 
We geared up, packed for 48 hours worth of water and rations. Why 48 hours for a 2-3 hours walk, because you never know what might happen. We had out sandbox talk where they showed us where we would be in relation to each other.
 
The patrol was uneventful, but very informative of the area. People in the area knew the routine and would avoid the area during this time. Once we were half way back to the fort we cut left and started our walk of the area surrounding us.
 
Walking for the last one and a half hours. It does a number. Beat, I could feel the anger coming on even early then. But not at my fellow soldiers, or myself. But the locals, I started to think about what they had done to that child. I know it wasn’t these people, but at that time, they were all the same to us. The enemy!
 
I hated them, and my hate grew! My anger grew! I became pissed, at everyone at one point. This is hard to admit, but there were times I seen myself not coming home, and almost wished it. I hated how I felt towards the end of tour. What they did to me, what they caused.
 
I almost took the cowards way! Almost!
The End For Now..
This is where I am going to stop for now, but it is just the start! I don’t know what else to say right now, other than remember you do not have to live in silence with any form of PTSD! It feels good to write this out, even though it kills my stomach and makes me want to almost puke. Thank you for listening. I hope this made sense. Feel free to comment if you want clarity on something or have a question.

MysticMike “Living with PTSD, Not Suffering”

 

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