My great-grandfather once told me that “The best and worst things in life happen at night.” I am sure that I had no idea what he was talking about at the time, but I clearly recall spending nights at my great-grandparents’ home in Jackson, Tennessee as a young boy and watching my great-grandfather pace the house at night and asking him why he always seemed to be awake. My great-grandfather William Alfred Key enlisted in the U.S. Army underage to fight in the final months of World War I and in 1940 was commissioned as an engineering officer in the beginning of World War II. He was later the State Commander of the Tennessee Veterans of Foreign Wars. Papa was my first hero and I am pretty sure he never slept.
Blog posts with the tag "Staff Perspective"
I recently received some feedback on training materials I put together, about how PTSD develops after a combat trauma. I had mentioned that classical conditioning explains how stimuli that occur in close proximity can become associated, resulting in conditioned responses. Of course, I mentioned Pavlov, because, dogs! Right? I might also have mentioned that our family dog salivates and does a little happy dance right on cue every morning when I grind the coffee, just before I walk over and scoop her food into the dish.
When I got married, my bridal shower hostess asked for my guests to give my husband and me advice on having a happy marriage. This wisdom ranged from “Never go to sleep angry” to “Remember that being happy is more important than being right.” All of this seemed to be good, sound advice for a couple who came into the relationship a bit later in life, after we had dealt with most things from our pasts. However, this got me thinking, “What happens to our Service members and Veterans and their significant others when they are unable to put the past in the past due to the multiple stressors of military life and exposure to traumatic events?”
Since 2001, more than 2.6 million U.S. military personnel have been deployed in support of Operations Enduring Freedom, Iraqi Freedom, and New Dawn. Between 2001 and 2016, more than 350,000 cases of traumatic brain injury (TBI) have been diagnosed in active duty Service members, most of which are concussive TBI (cTBI), also known as mild TBI.
Thinking about relationship, and always looking for a new slant that captures imagination, creativity and makes me pause to identify and question long-held beliefs, I decided to write a review of a new book that did exactly that. Dr. Brene Brown is a qualitative grounded theory researcher who develops theories based on peoples lived experiences rather than proving or disproving existing theories. In the midst of an era of disconnection, she speaks of cultivating community and the power of belonging.