To be honest, this entire Defying Our Demons PTSD Tour could have almost come from a title of a movie;
THE GOOD [12yrs Fire / EMS Service] THE BAD [Regardless of lives saved...or lost, there was trauma] THE UGLY [What came next; nightmares, uncontrollable emotions, and more]
And the ‘next’ wasn’t 10hrs later. It was years in the making, and in the particular set of circumstances that drove this movement, it came in slowly and quietly.
A seemingly one-off nightmare. The kind that is so unbelievably real that you wake in 100% certainty you’re living it in the moment. A nightmare of a call from years ago. The sounds so crisp. The sights so vivid. Emotions now completely out of control, although everything was so under control during that call so many years ago. Waking in a sweat. Shaking. Looking around in a state of utter confusion.
Weeks later some mood swings. Another nightmare (a different call).
And then weeks again, and now tears shed during a cute 30 second television commercial with laughing children in it.
KNOCK. KNOCK. "Who's there?" "It's PTSD, and I'm here to stay... Oh, and I don't know for how long."
Now years later, feeling not so far ahead in effectively dealing with everything PTSD can throw at a person, and almost completely frustrated with how difficult it’s been to find help, we’ve decided to launch this docu-series. A meandering, yet sobering and at times heart-wrenching look at PTSD and how it affects each and every one of us differently.
Our purposes are many in our mission, but they most certainly include a core set;
- Providing a Consistent Message for Awareness of #PTSD through stories of others, - A Bridging of Provincial Health Care Authorities through descriptive narrative, - Join Municipal / Provincial / Federal Governments for Awareness & Support, - Invitations for Learning and Understanding of, and for All through the eyes of those challenged, - Resource for Those Affected by PTSD (battling directly, or family/friend) through partnerships, - Platform for Support Organizations to assist in the continued healing.
To be clear, we are not here as counselors. We’re not here monitoring emergencies. We ARE here, however, to provide what we feel is a critical change in the understanding and stigma around PTSD, to effectively communicate these messages with conviction and consistency, and to ensure those battling their own demons (as well as their family and friends) are able to efficiently and effectively find the care, support, and understanding they deserve in their own time of crisis.
Please also remember this; while so much of what hear about #PTSD is focused on our valued Military Men and Women, Police/Fire/Ambulance, Emergency Medicine (Doctors, Nurses, etc.), Corrections Officers, Search and Rescue Teams, etc…there are so many more who battle PTSD every day. Tow Truck drivers, witnesses of traumatic events (first on scene after a motor vehicle accident), victims and/or witnesses of abuse, those who’ve suffered unexpected loss of a loved one, and so many more.
Everyone is valid. Everyone deserves to be heard. To be treated. To be healed.