PTSD

Note about last weeks post:  Yes the horse is putting weight on in his back, but the swelling was odd and not equal on both sides.  Turns out that because of the owners bad hips, when she goes to get off she hangs across the saddle until she feels she can let go and hit the ground. Doing this she is putting unnecessary pressure on each side of the withers.  Pulling the saddle toward her pushing it into the back in two different areas.  Massage with liniment and an extra pad is taking care of him and she just has to bite the bullet and hit the ground.  Much happier horse.

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Post Traumatic Stress Disorder has been around for a long time, but was kept hush-hush until recently.

I know several people who are dealing with it and it is a horrible thing.  My friend’s son came home from Iraq, she was thankful he was alive and on this side of the Atlantic.  She thought her worries were over.  I warned her that they probably weren’t.  Unfortunately she found that out when she brought him to Wal-Mart to pick up some stuff.  Someone dropped something, and he hit the ground.  The poor guy is still trying to recover from his tour of duty over there.

Another friend, in the last couple of years, married someone she knew from High School close to sixty years ago.  They are pushing 80, if not there already.  His two previous wives died from breast cancer.  They had a lot of history together, is what she told me when she decided to marry him.  They had seen each other over the years at reunions.  I wasn’t sold on this one.  If you didn’t date him in High School, what would make you think you’d want to date him now.  She found out that he had PTSD.  I found out at dinner one night.  We were sitting at dinner and I questioned him about why a screw, in the back of his kitchen cabinet, had to be just perfect.  It wouldn’t be seen by anyone and he had spent a whole day on one screw.  His reply, as he slammed his fist on the table was, that attention to detail was what had kept him alive through all the years in Veit Nam.  His face was red and he was not in control of his temper.  I told him that no one was shooting at him anymore and he didn’t have to dwell on that one screw.  They never did get that kitchen finished, and we gave up trying to help them.

So when my girlfriend told me that she believed I had PTSD the other day, I was like no way, I’ve never been in a fight worse than who got control of the remote.  But then I had to think about it.  After the two horses were killed by lightning, I was a little paranoid whenever a storm hit.  I’m much better now, but it’s taken a couple of years.

I looked up PTSD and it doesn’t always come from being in a war.  It can come from other traumatic situations that you are involved in or have witnessed.  As I read more about it, I really don’t think I have a true version of it, but it was a horrible situation.  Oh I remember what brought this up.  When we had a storm a couple of weeks ago I was out bring the horses in and a bolt cracked close by.  I hesitated for a moment deciding whether to run back to the house or go to the barn and go and get the horses.  It’s funny what runs through your mind in an instant.  I thought, I’d rather die trying to get them, than to go back to the house and live with the horror of them getting killed, again.  I just couldn’t live with two more horses being killed.

So I guess that’s a good reason why my girlfriend decided I had PTSD.  Actually if I truly had PTSD I would have hit the ground and hidden, not been stupid enough to walk out to the two pastures and bring in the four horses.

If you don’t live in Florida, the lightning capital of the world, you probably can’t wrap you mind around this.  Ten horses I know of personally lost their lives that week, two of them were mine.  I heard the bolt that got them.  I still cringe when I hear a bolt close by.  Yes I know many horses that got killed in barns, but I’ll take my chances on them being in the barn as opposed to under a tree that got hit.

Do I recommend going out there and being a target, no way.  Will I do it again?  Probably. Do I have PTSD?  I don’t think so.  I’m just old and stupid.

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