Stuck in Limbo
I've started working on the biography again but I need to let things settle internally so a couple of days away from the PC, or writing about the difficult stuff, would be good.
It was good to hear that Mat got back from his trip ok, that Wolf Junior is safe on his travels and Derek's forging ahead with his writing.
I usually have counselling on Tuesdays. I'm lucky to have a good counsellor. He realises that I do a lot of work on my own here and that the weekly sessions are my way of reflecting and putting the weeks thoughts and generated feelings in to some kind of order that makes sense.
I just found a diary from the time that I was serving in Northern Ireland. There are a few entries in there about some of the incidents I was involved in and a couple of poems. There were also entries about some of the lads and some of the people that I had met on leave. The memories trigger emotions of laughter, warmth and darker side of serving in a hostile zone.
One thing that stands out is that we were treated like the proverbial mushroom (kept in the dark and fed bullshit) by our senior officers. We were intelligent guys though (in the main) and figured quite a lot of things out for ourselves. There's a level that's beyond our scope though..or beyond the scope of a common soldier, sailor or airman (our level)...and that's where politics come in. With politics comes corruption and lies. When I think back to the general orders that we were given about policing our area, I realise that we were made to do our job with one hand tied behind our backs and that we weren't cared for by our high ranking officers. I'd liken it to being a rat in a lab waiting to have an experiment conducted on it..or perhaps being experimented on. So many things didn't make sense.
We were put in harms way so often without having any form of backup or defence. I guess these are thoughts to expand upon in the biography.
I'm guessing the state of limbo will last until the poetry book gets here and I've assessed the paper quality.
As far as the exhibition goes, the following organisations have agreed to have their banners and leaflets available: The Veterans Agency, Combat Stress, The Royal British Legion and Help for Heroes. Business Link have got a freelance reporter to do a press release re my photograpy website and she's kindly mentioned the exhibition and the poetry book in the piece. I don't want anything going live until I've okayed the book though.
If you know of a local gallery that's willing to hold the exhibition for a month, please would you make contact with them for me? The purpose of the exhibition is to raise awareness of PTSD in veterans and avenues of support available to them. I need details of venues etc now to plan further and the accountant can't put the bid in until the plans re venues are drawn up. So I hope you can all help in some way. Costing is important and I'm looking for a lot of good will here. I also want to raise some money through this project via donation boxes at the venues. The main charity for the donations will be Combat Stress. I want the money raised to pay for the treatment of veterans that don't have a war disablement pension. If you have a war disablement pension then the Veterans Agency will pay for your treatment if you refer yourself to Combat Stress.
I know veterans that are in a really bad way but fell foul of the tribunal system. I know others that haven't had the condition formally diagnosed. All these people need help. If through our efforts here we can help a few along the way by providing some treatment and support, it'll be a worthwhile project.