Over on Parc Bench, Gregory Victor reviews the new book on Tim Hetherington by Alan Huffman. He was also a great admirer of the film Restrepo, was also deeply appreciative of Tim and how he lived his life. Do read the review, over at Parc Bench.
Here I Am is a fitting tribute to the life’s work of a man who constantly risked his life to give voice to people devastated by war. -Gregory Victor, Parc Bench
Disclosure: One of the projects I just finished up on on was to facilitate a free giveaway of this book through the World Wrestling Entertainment. Even so, the book is a good terrific find, very easy to read, speaks to veterans of all eras, and families will glean wisdom from it as well. I read it in one afternoon. -Kanani
Jillian, Paul Zipes and I have talked a lot about making sure that while we write about PTS, that we steer clear of pointing people to the assumption that everyone who goes through war comes back with it. It’s true that PTS, or PTSD is the condition most associated with veterans (even though they make up only 10% of the total PTSD population). Sadly, to most civilians, it isn’t courage, duty, or honor that characterizes a warrior, but often the impression that every person who has gone through combat, comes back irretrievably broken. This very stereotype is what dissuades people from getting help. While it always makes for a more dramatic story (especially in movies and television which provide a steady diet of anguish), we know the assumption isn’t true. Still, combat leaves its mark with everyone who goes through it. And while it might not be full blown PTSD, one clinical psychologist has come up with a term to describe the set of symptoms that are more common. “Post-Combat Reactions” are normal responses to war, according to Dr. Anne Freund, a clinical psychologist in St. Augustine FL, who has worked extensively with Police, First Responders and veterans in her everyday practice.
“There’s a big difference between PTSD and Post Combat Reactions. PCR is the normal reaction everybody has after war. We’ve seen it in wars since battles have first been fought. Everybody is walking around acting like they are fine and they are dealing with PCR. What they don’t realize is everyone is affected by war and that’s normal,” Freund says.
Not to be written off, these reactions can make life very stressful, almost impossible to function in everyday life. They can throw someone into a pit of anxiety or depression, and make having a family life equally difficult. Dr. Anne has written a book, Taming The Fire Within: Life After War, which is being given away free on WWE Tribute To The Troops as a downloadable .pdf. (Once the free giveaway is over, you can purchase it on Amazon). She wrote the book for veterans and family members so everyone can get an understanding on how to cope, and also build better lives.
“The term ‘disorder’ often conveys a stigma that fosters guilt, shame, confusion and the inability to communicate. We want veterans to realize they are not alone. When combat is over, the experiences still continue. It’s time to break the silence so healing can begin.” -Dr Anne Freund.
Recommended: Written in a non-clinical, conversational tone, full of photos, not too long, Dr. Anne pulls from her history of having worked within the community.
WarRetreat has a broad range of readers. From soldiers, people who do yoga, parents, spouses, and people in law enforcement. Thanks to Fred Leland, Jr., who posts articles relating to security and law enforcement on a section of his site, Law Enforcement & Security who recommended these books. We strongly feel that any yogi who wants to work with veterans, can gain much by venturing deep and doing some reading.
Odysseus in America: Combat Trauma and the Trials of Homecoming by Jonathon Shay, MD PhD
Achilles in Vietnam: Combat Trauma and the Undoing of Character also by Jonathon Shay
War and the Soul: Healing Our Nation’s Veterans from Post Traumatic Stress Disorder by Edward Tick, PhD
In addition, I continue to learn more about this world of yoga. I also picked up Kripalu Yoga: A guide to Practice on and off the Matt by Richard Faulds. If you can, please order them through an Independent Bookseller.