Trigger Warning… PTSD

That phrase in an email at work caused me to have to have a friendly discussion with my boss. I will not go into that discussion beyond the fact that my use of the phase was known to be in a sense of humor.

The other party felt that it was offensive.

Okay, so are you so fucking self absorbed that your (I am assuming that it was their) feelings that felt infringed upon?

I have sat on this for a bit now and in some ways it has been brewing and stewing. It has visited me while I was going to sleep, or even waking up.

Should it bother me? Prebaby not, but it does.

I have to wonder if they are laying claim to the PTSD as they have experienced something in their lifetime. If they have experienced something, I hope that they heal from it.

But to deny me the use of the phrase Trigger Warning… or PTSD?

You can fuck right the hell off.

Do I have PTSD? damn right I do.

Lets touch on some of my past lives and areas where a little PTSD may be in order, so if you are tender of heart and not up for real feelings, please head to right now.

Trigger Warning…

I was a latchkey kid starting at 2nd grade. Yes, I know today it would be considered a shame for a child to wake, shower, dress, and feed themselves… it would be criminal for them to be allowed to hop on their bike (without a helmet even) and ride to school.

After school I would ride/walk home then have to entertain myself until 5-6pm when my father would get home. I really wish that he would take my calls so that I could express to him how sorry that I am that I was not a better kid, teen, or even early adult. I did not become a really good person until after he stopped taking my calls. I may cover that more later.

Trigger Warning…

While riding my bike one day, I was outriding bullies, I had a steep hill to get away, but it was not an easy ride down. I ended up hitting a rock and tumbling. I hit my head in the process and going unconscious. I have no idea how long I was out. When I came back to the real world, I walked my bike down Stark Street (for the non-local, just know that it is a major throughfare in Portland Oregon) and I passed a high school girl who looked at me and almost lost her lunch. I got back home and found out why, Most of my hair was matted blood. I probably told my dad about it when he got home. I was already cleaned up by then. It was not the first (or last) time that I patched myself up.

Trigger Warning…

One may get a little PTSD from getting into arguments to the nose to nose level with an outlaw biker step dad. Yes there was yelling… yes there was screaming… but once I stopped running form bullies and actually taking a stand and beating the fuck out of them for fun, I stopped backing down. I even got into one fight because another kid asked “Fuck you, wanna fight” Game on! But that is a story for another post. My mother quickly saw the writing on the wall, I was no longer interested in her or I being abused any further and that since a 15 year old was literacy nose to nose with a 50+ year old biker and not showing fear, I had to be extricated form the situation. {sorry sis, i know that we really have not talked about some of my baggage with your dad.]

Trigger Warning…

That same 15 year old trying to get into the bus that had been converted into a home… to unlock the door of an old bus, you do a CPR trust to pop the lock on the door release. Well I was having trouble that night. Then the door opened and I got to have my first stare down the barrel of a Colt 1911 .45ACP. Yes, it is an attention getter. Did I lose sleep over it? Nope, but it was only a day or two before I moved to the East Coast and started a new life. It was the last direct abuse that I endured from him.

Trigger Warning…

Before I went into the Army I was homeless for a short minute (after a serious of poor decisions/action so don’t think I am proclaiming innocence here). When my folks found out, They took me back in while I was waiting to ship to Fort Benning Georgia. I learned some things during that stint, but it was a mild lesson.

Trigger Warnings (multiple)…

While I was in basic training, I blew out one of my knees and was pulled from training. At first it was all oh poor your here, take some worthless pain pills and drive on private. When that did not work, they threatened to recycle me. (For my civilian friends, that means to start me from day one again) Well, that did not help me heal either. I know it is a damn shock isn’t it? So They put me in physical therapy for a while. Then I had a brand new doctor (I knew from her rank) tell me… “You know private, these injuries usually get better when you get home.” Inside I was livid and I wanted to yell “BITCH, I was fuckin homeless when I came into the Army, what makes you think that I want to go back?” Remember, I was not the kinder, and gentler Griz that you may now how yet… I was able to civilly tell her that I did not want out of the army as I had no place else to go. She then took my crutches away and kicked me out of physical therapy. As you can imaging, that also did not heal me, physically or mentally. The hobbling around blew out my other knee. I was pulled form training entirely and did desk duty in the office. Ultimately, they did a bone scan (another story for another day) and told me, “Private, Uncle Sam broke his new toy, and I am afraid that you will likely never walk straight again”. That took me to a very dark place and I started sketching things that my platoon mates noticed and reported to a drill sergeant. Next thing I now, I am having an appointment with a doc across the street to discuss my suicidal ideations. A month or two after that, I noticed that I was getting a weird vibe from the drill sergeants and officers around me and is was SUPER WEIRD. Then the Senior Drill called me over and told me to get in a vehicle. Odd, I have not been taken for a ride unless it was in the back of a deuce and a half (big truck folks). I was taken to Main Post, to the CID office. CID stands for Criminal Investigation Division. For you NCIS TV show fans, this is a Army version. It turned out that there was a guy back home that wanted to date my high school sweetheart who had broken up with me a couple years earlier… but He seemed to feel that I was in the way. How would I be cleared from his path to courtship? Well call the Battalion and claim that I was selling drugs in the company, not just little stuff either. apparently they thought that I was dealing cocaine. He was going to mail them the evidence that I was mailing it to his “girlfriend” Now I start studying law (as a hobbyist, in 8th grade (yes another story for another day)) I knew that it would mean nothing as the chain of evidence would be shit and any attorney could get that tossed, even if I represented myself, I could have. For the record, to that point of my life, I had never seen coke, let along taken or sold it. As of today, I have seen it, in other people’s possession, but I have not touched, handled, or consumed it in any way shape or form. My DD-214 friends know that this mere accusation ended my time in the service. There was a female agent in the room and I (even today) took my Military Customs and Courtesies class seriously. I am careful with my words in mixed company, unless I know that that company is okay with the words. I did have a few vehement slips in courtesies as I told him that his case was full of shit and that there was no evidence as I had done nothing of the kind. When I was discharged form the Army the following Monday, I called my ex to let her know that I would be heading back to town soon. She already knew that I was discharged and in fact the guy that was accusing me of crimes, told her before I had received my orders that I was being discharged and when. As a postal worker, how would he have known. So after a few weeks staying near Benning with friends, I headed back to Maryland. My ex let me stay in her guest room.

Trigger Warning…

After another bad decision, I moved out of her home to the streets, more specifically into a large park. Winter came quickly, and if you know Maryland, that is often not a pleasant thing it get damn cold, bitter to the bone cold. More bad decisions, but… I broke into a home nearby and stole camping gear, food, and wine. I was finding warm places to sleep when things were bad. I would sneak into a laundry room in an apartment complex and sack out behind the driers because they were warm. Sleep with women simply for a shower. I did get a job, buy could not earn enough to get out of the woods. I got “home” one night to find out that my entire campsite was gone. both tents and all of my belongings poof. I got caught sleeping in a room among the tunnels under the mall that I was working in. It turns out that I snore SOOOO badly that it can scare people (who knew?!?). My boss connected me with one of the food court staffers who rented rooms and I moved over there. It was pretty soon when the police that had seized my camp connected all of my uniforms, discharge papers, and medical records to my new job. They came to have a chat with me, and once again, I got to go for a ride. This ride resulted in cuffs, prints, and pictures. I may have to tell that story again for you later on.

I will skip a bunch of other trigger warnings for tonight

Trigger Warning…

Did you know that if you spend enough years in call centers taking many mean and angry callers that you can get a form of Tourette’s? When my phone rings I (and many other colleagues) reflexively curse. I have silenced my phone and it stayed silenced for years. It wasn’t until I wanted to be sure that I did not miss my current boss’ calls that I made changes to my phones settings. When he calls it now plays the Darth Vader March. It is not me being mean, it was his suggestion as I love him dearly. He has been the best boss in my many careers and I would walk over coals for him. When he retires, I will cry…

Trigger warning…

I am so pro-choice that I do not judge those that choose to end their own life. I have contemplated it many times.

Trigger Warning…

So if you think that you get to monopolize the phrases Trigger Warning or PTSD, you are likely a sadly mistaken millennial who has no fuckin’ clue as to what PTSD is really about. Have your life situations been as bad as what I have shared with you tonight? (I deeply hope not) I even held some things still within my mind and other elements I have discussed with nobody and never will.

Trigger Warning… PTSD Trigger Warning… PTSD Trigger Warning… PTSD Trigger Warning… PTSD

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