Saturday, April 4, 2009
Working at the VA
So here it is Saturday afternoon and I am working at the VA Hospital in Manchester, NH. I have been doing this job for almost three years. Today it is usually busy. Today we have a big group of young Army guys that are here to have their final physicals before shipping out to Afghanistan and Iraq. I am watching them go up and down the halls and can see them on the security cameras. They seem full of excitement and ready to go serve our country. I wonder why they are here on a Saturday and not on the week days when we have all the other people come in that have been shot up and suffering from PTSD( post traumatic stress disorder). I see more and more young people come into this building with missing limbs for therapy, others for injuries suffered on duty, and many for PTSD. Many times working here I get suicide calls that shake me to the core. I hear the desperation in their voices and listen to the stories that are incredible. Do these young people realize what they are going into? Do they realize the life time of memories they will carry with them or how it will effect their families? Being a daughter of a Vietnam Veteran I know first hand about the many issues that combat has and that effects not only my dad but all of us in the family.
I know that we need these young men and women to protect our country but just wish the US did more to protect and support them when they come home and all through their lives. So much does not surface till years down the road and sometimes it is to late for them to get help.
When you see a service man or woman just say THANK YOU or even a smile for what they are sacrificing for you and me.