I was the one shocked by the diagnosis and completely unprepared.
I was the one who saw the changes in your behavior but wasn’t made aware of PTSD’s existence so I blamed everything on myself. Was it that you didn’t love me anymore?
I was the one who couldn’t scream or even cry because I needed to be strong for my spouse and family.
I was the one who read the therapist’s diagnosis report “Is exhibiting self-defeating behaviours which can include suicide”.
I was the one who was terrified to leave you alone and would sit in the car in the drive way taking one last breath before entering my home in fear of what I might find.
I was the one who watched in disbelief as friends, colleges and even some family turned their back to us in our greatest time of need.
I was the one for whom even the smallest outings stopped or became major affairs.
I was the one who watched for the signs and did my best to prevent or support you through the triggers.
I was the one who became both mom and dad because even our regular daily activities became too much for you to handle.
I was the one who managed the doctor, therapist appointments and medication refills.
I was the one who researched and read all I could so I could stand up for you and get you the support and therapy you deserved.
I was the one who wanted so desperately to be close to you and feel your love but found the medication and your symptoms made this impossible.
I was the one who laid awake at night terrified and wondering if we would make it through another day.
I was the one who silently wondered what happened to the life we once lived, where did it go?
I was the one who saw the glimmers of hope and held onto them tightly so I could lead us forward.
I am the one who loves you with all my heart, will be there for you and my family, I will not back down from this challenge life has dealt us.
By Lori Wilson
Founder of Families of the RCMP for PTSD Awareness