Last week I was talking to my sister about going to Vegas instead of Florida for a seasonal vacation. We had chosen this spot because we would be able to let our parents watch our kids for a night out on the strip. Just last week we thought “how fun” going out in party city would be. If we would’ve been in town last night the both of us would’ve been at that concert without a doubt in my mind.
I dropped my son off this morning and felt my heart plummet into my stomach as I watched the terror play across my mother’s television with a caption to describe the horror. More than 400 had been injured or killed by the time that I was there to read the news. While I was deployed to Afghanistan we lost 2. When did it become more dangerous to be home than to be at war? It’s one thing to travel into a war zone versus having the war at your front doorstep.
Yet, here we are today a nation more divided than ever. “More gun control” screams the Democrats while Republicans fight to protect their rights. Organizations like ISIS are trying to claim responsibility in the initial release of information, yet we bicker like cats and dogs among ourselves trying to point the fingers of blame. What happened to the America that I fell in love with? The one I served with a deep sense of personal pride. Today, we should be doing everything we can to heal our wounds. Not a single American should go without feeling some extent of empathy towards the devastation.
The strongest tool I have is my words. Unfortunately, they currently fail me as I’m struggling to find the right words to say.
To those who were there please do not feel like you cannot reach out, that for any reason your trauma is any less than anothers with PTSD. What you experienced is very traumatic, regardless of the capacity in which you experienced the event. There’s an amazing group of individuals behind this website ready to talk to you in your hour of need. Whether it’s today, next week, or next month, we will always be ready to address your request.
To those who had family attending the event, you’re potentially missing a loved one, your trauma is real too. Our families and loved ones are essential to life. Without my significant other, I would be a walking zombie mess. Losing them, thinking they’re gone, hearing the tolls & being unable to verify their whereabouts is something I pray I never experience. I can imagine that none of those who were traveling will be home anytime soon. That elongated waiting before you can hold them knowing that they’re wounded from a shooter cannot be an easy task. Please, do not hesitate to reach out either.
Let’s all take a moment to hug our families a little tighter tonight. When you do please take a moment to also reflect how amazing our unsung heroes of America are too. From police responders to the nurses and doctors that still staff the hospitals treating the injured there are hundreds that will go unnamed in the social media cycle. They are the proof though, that there is still good in the world.