Message to Military Veterans
I am sure you have noticed I have special concerns about you, the veterans. Although, not a veteran of war, I am an ex-army wife, and both of my son n laws are active duty right now. One for 18 years the other for two they have both fought in war zones.
While you were doing the hardest thing of all, fighting for my freedom, I have been taking notes on traumatic brain injury, PTSD and epilepsy since my first brain injury in 1989. My husband had been in the National Guard for a decade and went active duty in 1995 in the hopes I may be able to have brain seizure surgery. I know all of you would have done the same. Unfortunately I was turned down for that procedure twice, due to low chances of improvement.
I had a wonderful neurologist in Hawaii. He asked me to write something about my seizures. When I did it came out in prose form. When I took it to my neurologist he read it with tears in his eyes. He asked me to keep writing and told me it was publishable. I kept on writing and my husband put them online. He had to beg me to email my first poem, "It Is Nothing".
That poem somehow ended up on the Harvard University Neurological Poetry Forum as the reason for their page 1996. The Brain Injury Association published my first book 3 months after my second injury. Within five months of first publishing poems I had a second moderate to severe brain injury. I was unable to write or find my voice again for 14 years.
I wrote long handed for a year gauging if I made enough sense to write out loud again. I published again in December 2010. While I have had all of that insomnia that a lot of you are familiar with, I have been studying. Studying what happens to most of us. The statistics have startled and sickened me beyond belief. I believe you will agree with the travesty of high prison populations being equated to the veterans.
The high population of veterans with brain injuries that are going to end up in prison based on statistics is scary. I have some ideas of how we as a unified group could keep this from happening. Please keep reading and supporting me, as we have a big job in front of us. Though not a war veteran, I am your brain injury writer veteran.