I've heard that families of soldiers can suffer from PTSD (Post Traumatic Stress Disorder) as well as the soldier but is there such a thing as PRE-Traumatic Stress Disorder? A co-worker recently sent me this article of an email home from a Marine which I had already seen a while back, at Blackfive's blog I think, but I never finished reading the entire thing until now. Whoa! Now I'm traumatically stressed thinking about Sprout's likely upcoming deployment. This line especially hangs heavy on my heart:
"Most Memorable Scene — In the middle of the night, on a dusty airfield, watching the better part of a battalion of Marines packed up and ready to go home after over six months in al-Anbar, the relief etched in their young faces even in the moonlight. Then watching these same Marines exchange glances with a similar number of grunts loaded down with gear file past — their replacements. Nothing was said. Nothing needed to be said"
and then this one really made me sad:
"Most Common Thought — Home. Always thinking of home, of my great wife and the kids. Wondering how everyone else is getting along. Regretting that I don't write more. Yep, always thinking of home."
As a mother of a soldier about to deploy, that thought stays constantly on my mind. I have so many other things to think about right now...the holidays, the wedding...and yet thoughts of war keep creeping in and out of all my plans. Trying to prepare myself for the feelings, the fears, the tense months of waiting for it all to be over. Knowing that I must now take a backseat to his new wife and trying to keep my place but also wanting to know every word he says, how he sounds, what he is going through while he is there. Learning what time it is in yetanother time zone, waking up before dawn hoping to be IM'd. If it's already this hard for me, how hard must the thought of going to war be for him?
I will have to place my trust in God. I don't guess it will hurt to start praying in advance.