Thursday, August 18, 2011

What stirs in your memory when you read, Voices of Veterans?

Actually, it is “Voices for Veterans”; the "of" placed in there is for the supportive radio show in Washington state.

It may be you are unfamiliar with web site on the web, but I would be surprised if you do not hear voices of veterans on some occasions. We all have loud recalls, even if we all don’t have flashbacks.

This particular not-for-profit was started back in the days when Vietnam veterans were returning home – some of them. Some left the plane in Hawaii and disappeared into the jungle. As a pastoral counselor, I can assure you there are a lot of ways of not returning home, even if there was supposedly a home to which to return. There are various after-the-what-evers and I would be astonished if we all were not astonished at the variety of routes PTSD takes in its withdrawals, alienations, and avoidances. The rage? That is too well known. A hit right in the pit of the stomach. A shot heard and reheard. Deep shadows. Deep shadows.

So it is today we have a lot of shelters today the homeless, some for veterans, some for abused mothers and their children, all sorts of shelters. Jails also ought to be a good research site on PTSD for some Ph.D. dissertation. Sometimes in winter they are sought out as shelters, too...

One of the things about which I have been struck as my wife and I worked on the manuscript is one of young Saul’s characteristics after he fled Damascus. It’s one of which a lot of sufferers of PTSD can identify: he felt homeless. It took about twenty years after that experience on the way to Damascus that he worked through his post-traumatic process so he began to settle down – and then it would be mostly for only a couple of years at a time. It was fascinating to Annelie and I as we began to unravel that process.

We authors all have our hopes for our books, hopefully not many delusional! Most will center on individual sales. Having seen our name sufficiently in print already, ours have gone on. We would like to see The Apostle Paul and Post-Traumatic Stress, From Woundedness to Wholeness as a springboard for a variety of discussion groups in which persons find a role model and a grounding for their next step. The newspaper reviews concern us, but not so much. For this book, it is not the sales slips that count, it is when that last page is read, will there be sensed a calling of Deep unto deep?

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