Wednesday, December 31, 2014

#DearVA My Husband is Succeeding.

#DearVA, 

My husband is succeeding. I want the #VA and the world to know that. It doesn’t look the way that people might perceive success to be. He doesn’t work, and he has a hard time taking care of the kids when it becomes absolutely unavoidably necessary for him to do so. He gets overwhelmed and wants to lock himself away in our bedroom. He relies heavily on our older child to help with our younger child, which he knows isn’t fair but can’t be helped at this point. But beyond that, he’s in school. I won’t lie and say that he has a grand plan with career dreams. But he’s in school and this is such a miraculous step in our lives that I am more proud than I am able to express. He went to college before. I thought it was a good one because it was a small community college… but the campus was crowded and the numbers of people there were detrimental to my husband’s psychological well being and he quit. We live in a small town now and he attends the local university. The buildings are much further spaced out so he feels like he can see what’s going on better. And this also allows for a much larger “personal bubble” as he can walk in the less traversed areas. His mere attendance is the miracle that I’m so proud of. His mentality while he’s there is to keep his head down and keep his mouth shut and get through it. It’s not something he takes a great deal of pleasure in, though we’ve finally found the area that he seems to like studying and have chosen his major now, so hopefully the pleasure will come. And he’s not talking to his classmates or forming relationships or friendships. He goes in, takes copious notes, comes home and studies his notes, runs through them with me. I read his textbooks to him and he takes more notes. I listen to his assignments and counsel him as necessary, proofread his papers and make suggestions to him. I am his personal tutor and he often says that without me he wouldn’t and couldn’t be in school. But I want people to see that he is successful, not because of me but because regardless of whether he needs help or not, because he has the drive to keep going. He has the ambition to finish his degree. I want #NewVA to see that my husband is not just a disabled vet. He’s not just collecting a check. He has drive and while he doesn’t know where it’s going right now the same can be said for many college students. He’s trying to find his place in this world again and he’s not letting the fact that it’s hard and he’s excruciatingly uncomfortable stop him from doing this. And damn it, he gets outstanding grades. He says that when his degree is complete he will not walk with his class because it’s too much and too many people… but you better believe I will pick up those honor chords and hang them proudly in our house. I will send out announcements and I will throw a very small party to celebrate him and his accomplishments. #VA and #NewVA, you have no idea about the drive and determination and struggle of these men and women. It may take time and it may take multiple tries and I surely can’t guarantee success… but if you knew what kind of efforts this takes, you’d see the sheer success that I see. 

Successfully Yours, 
100% Navy Wife


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#Dear VA,

Tonight I want to thank you. 

For finally providing my Veteran with a Sleep Study appointment. 

You see, every night it's the same; either he's not sleeping (therefore I'm not sleeping), he's tossing and turning, having nightmares or he's snoring so loudly it keeps me awake. The snoring is the scariest, in my opinion. You see, it's in these snoring episodes that he stops breathing. It's a terrifying prospect to face, not just for me but for my husband. 

It keeps me awake at night, when he sleeps, listening for the inevitable moment when he doesn't take in a breath and I have to wake him up, gasping, from his "sleep." 

It's been like this for a while now. We requested a Sleep Study in 2012. 

His appointment has been made for February 2014. 

For two years we chased this appointment, asking at every PCM appointment, where we'd hear the same, "It's in the system" response.

Why is that?

Why is it that it took TWO YEARS for a simple appointment? 

Hopefully the #NewVA will work something out so that important appointments like this aren't two years in the making.

And in case you're wondering, this was written at 4:23 am, after a night of no sleep for me and my Veteran husband. He didn't even snore tonight, because he didn't even fall asleep.

But again, thank you for taking two years to show that you might (kind of? Not really.) CARE about my husband's health.

K.W.

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