Tuesday, January 1, 2013

Hello FOV friends, family, and blog visitors, I pray that you will be gentle with my posts, as they are in fact, very real and very raw.  I often write so quickly that I do not fully understand damages done until after the fact.  But, here is the deal.  HEAR ME when I say, I no longer work for the government, I NO LONGER have to fear you.  HEAR ME when I say I take damn good care of my husband and if you don't believe so, come, check his pulse....he's alive.... that is better than what his care providers often have done.... waiting til the flat line and steady beep of heart tones that incite ACTION.  I don't wait til the last minute caring for my combat injured husband.  Quite the opposite.  I fight until I am broken.  I fight till I am giving in to the rage.  I fight for YOU to do what is right, so that YOU can save face and blame it on yet another "maniacal caregiver/mother/wife".

Call me what you will.  Labels no longer concern me.  I prevented one suicide where I used to work, for SURE.  And quite possibly, 3 others.  I gave peace to a dying man, when everyone else thought he was behavioral.  Want to know how?  I sang to him.  I sang every damn 60 and 70s rock I could think of, and guess what folks, I brought a smile to him with my air guitar and voice.... all the while balancing cocktails of pills that were to HELP, not hurt.

I was a good ace in the hole, but many viewed me as a threat.  I am no threat.  If you are here to fight this epidemic of suicides then welcome, I fight beside you.  If you are here to gather things for other purposes, I implore you to be gone.  You are not welcome here.  To read our hearts is to know a combat veteran.

Read on. 

But first, here is a video I put together on Secondary.  Its the whole thing.  Its me.  It really is me.  How I talk, how I look, how I cry, how I laugh....how I distract over the tiniest things....

I want you to know me.  It's okay, watch it.  It will be good for you, because I am not aware of many other women who are less concernced about reputation and more concnerned about Veterans than myself.

I am who I am.  You may love me, hate me, beat me, but I will always be me.  So, folks, here, is me :) Enjoy and leave your thoughts at the bottom, nothing I hate worse is seeing all these people have been looking at my posts, but NO ONE has anything to say???? NOTHING? Surely you have one word, one sentiment good or bad.  C'mon stop being creeper and leave a note.  Or, email me at winwinkateri@gmail.com

Another disclaimer:

I swear.  Kind of a lot.  And it drives Miss Brannan the most perfect woman EVER crazy.  She has even prefaced posts as a warning.  But when I blog, I blog for real, and I WILL not censor myself.  I'll live that to my beloved Brannan.  Here.  Here I am.  Where are YOU?  Will you show yourself to me and prove I am NOT alone?  Are you strong enough to show the world that you are human and are dealing with very human things?  Go on.  No one.  NO ONE HERE JUDGES ever. 

So, caregiver skin, here I am.  Its late, I'm tired, and its almost xmas.  But, the point is, I am COMFORTABLE IN MY OWN SKIN.  And I KNOW I am the most beautiful when I am being me.
Caregiving for a combat vet is freaking hard.   Its tiring and relentless and makes me sometimes borderline nuts.  BUT its my HUSBAND! Have you met him?  You should see him laugh sometimes, it makes me cry.  When you can get him to laugh, you are in like flynt in my book.  You are aces.  He has the deepest most genuine laugh ever.  And he lights up like xmas tree.  Thats few and far between.  So I remind myself why I love him, and I resolve to love him harder every day.  Loving a combat vet that you care for is often very very VERY ungratifying, so don't join us for the glamour.  Ain't no glamour here folks.  Its ugly, messy, sad, angry, confusing.....but also, it is the MOST rewarding knowledge base you will ever be privy too.  I have learned more about myself in 2 years, than ever in my 32 years of life.  I have become a better mom, not perfect, but better, I am a better wife who is more capable of self sustainment than I ever thought possible.  YES I still need friends, yes I still need help.  But the smaller more personal needs I now know are inconsequential and non essential, and if I need something, I go get it myself.

The VA has a funny way of saying, "You are enabling this" "you are making him dependent on you" "You are treating him like a baby...." Well, dears, I don't know how you raised YOUR babies, but I do NOT treat 2 year olds like I treat my husband.  My baby is still learning, my HUSBAND is being REMINDED.  

My husband is being protected, and kept physically safe.  Take a hike VA.  You almost killed him with your lacky care for his rotten feet.  Only after I begged cried and moaned did we EVER start getting treated for these infections.  I digress.... Watch the vid, and welcome loves, to my world.

This is me, and I. Am. Small.

~~~~~Written/recorded by K. Peterson, a combat Veteran caregiver, proud wife of an army Veteran messed right up in good old Iraq.  TBI, PTSD, and you name it.  Never give up women.  Never never never never give up.  Fight for what is right, and continue to speak your truth. 


  1. I stumbled upon your blog this evening and had to touch base with you. I can't find your name, but mine is Nancy and I've been blogging since April 2011...my blog is BLOG OF A VET'S WIFE, My Uncharted Journey into Publishing my First Book. My book, Diary of a Vet's Wife, Loving and Living with Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, just came out the end of November. I ended up self-publishing and it turned out beautiful.

    I notice you have a book review section and I will make contact with Brittney regarding a review. But I'm so happy I found you. Can't understand why I never saw you before. Did you change your title page?

    Divorced with 3 young children,I met and married the love of my life who was a Vietnam Vet, unaware of the demons lurking in the shadows. My memoir shows a family living with PTSD, which I later developed living with my husband's illness. We were married for 15 years before he finally succeeded in taking his own life. It covers an 18 yr perior of my life and it took 16 years to write the book.

    I definitely want to stay in contact with you because I DO KNOW WHAT YOU'RE GOING THROUGH! And I hope we can become friends.

    My warmest wishes for a Happier New Year,
    Nancy MacMillan

    It's getting late

  2. Hi Aimee,
    I left you a long comment last night but when I looked this morning, it was gone. Was it not approved for some reason? I'm sorry if I said something wrong. I know you're tender because I've been where you are.
    With warmest regards,
    Nancy MacMillan

  3. I truly value the candor in your blog. I tend to censor myself when I write, maybe because I still care how other's perceive me. I'm working on that issue. I have one civilian friend and she's a caring person, but she will never understand what my real day to day is, even though she tries. There's no way that she can get it. She's the one I hang out with when I want to escape my reality. Sometimes I just want to say, "Think about all the things your husband takes care of around your home, yard, etc? Well, think about what it would be like if he wasn't able to anymore. It sucks." Last thing: like you I find that my patience is less than ideal. I tend to tune out when I should be listening, because I don't want to hear about the past anymore. I suppose that makes me a bad caregiver, but in some ways it's my defense mechanism. There, I said it. Thank you for your raw footage as it really resonated with me.

  4. Hi, it's Kateri, I'm sorry I don't get notified for comments. Please yes do the book reviews!!! Is anyone helping you with that? And Karen, THANK you a MILLION! I used to care, but my secondary, its pretty obvious, I can't hide it. LOL I no longer care. Of course, I no longer work, taking care full time of my husband and family. I had some AMAZING writers tell me just WRITE. WRITE!! Worry later. I left a lot of my posts as drafts. The ones that may make heads spin. But I've always been very, um, ballsy? Truthteller, justice seeky type. And you rock! I don't want to hear about the past either!!!! But I think for me, not you, that is a defense mech. You got to deal with your sh*t. Don't layer trauma. Its disasterous. Trust me. damespaz.blogspot is my personal blog, but dig through these posts, I have several that I am certain will move you all in one way or another. Please. Damespaz, Peteyskat, Bigbrotherskidsister, Kateri P, Kat P those are all I blog under. See No secrets. Love and kindness to you :) All of youl.

  5. In my emotional nightmare this evening ( well
    Midnight) I searched google and found your blog. I can't explain the sense of peace I'm feeling at the moment. To see my life written in front of me. Your video was a breath a fresh air even if only temporary . I have friends - one or two who I know go through the life I'm living. In the very beginning it helped me, now I tend to feel even more alone . My husbands combat injuries are harder to see. Very few outside physical scars but many on the inside. I think this makes them harder to accept. It's been 3 years and our "war at home" only seems to get worse. I've reached my breaking point so many times- yet I'm still here wondering how I'm looking forward to reading more of your blog and others some have posted on the comments. Finding even a few moments of relief words can not even describe .

  6. Hi cari! 2 years ago I responded just like you did.... I was keeping google in business trying to find others like us! Are you doing better? I'm so sorry I am just seeing this now. Please don't be shy kateri -at- familyofavet.com

  7. I found your blog at the google. Your video was a breath a fresh air even if only temporary.I can't explain the sense of peace I'm feeling at the moment. To see my life written in front of me local vet search.
    . Your video was a breath a fresh air even if only temporary . I have friends - one or two who I know go through the life I'm living. In the very beginning it helped me, now I tend to feel even more alone . My husbands combat injuries are harder to see.

  8. All I can say is thank you. You have said what I'm feeling and living right now.....my husband has ptsd and tbi and everything else....I am tearing up cause everything u have said is what I feel and think and living and I know I am not alone..... so thank you !!!!!!!!