Today, I am overwhelmed. I am so happy. I am still feeling tired and crazy and sad and ridiculous... but I am inspired and encouraged to continue telling my story.
So many of you have reached out. So many friends who I respect and love have emboldened me to tell my story even more.
I will be honest... there are pieces that will probably always be for me and only me, but I feel brave. I often sit here at my laptop wondering if I am talking to myself. Am I indulging a selfish desire to be heard? Am I talking to hear myself speak? This feels silly at times and frivolous. Is it even worth it?
Yes, it is worth it, because I can already see a difference and more importantly, I FEEL a difference. I know I am not alone. Knowing that I am part of a group of friends and family who know how I feel is liberating. The ability to say words I have never said out loud... to admit feelings that scared me and made me feel so alone is more than I could have ever hoped for.
I can see progress. I can see my path to recovery. I can see success.
I will never fully recover, but that is not the goal. I am proud of my scars. I am grateful for my experiences... OK, I wish some had never happened, and if I could go back in time I might avoid certain situation to protect myself, BUT I am glad that I can use my experiences for some kind of good. I feel strong. I feel proud. And I feel hopeful....
So Thank YOU! Please, today reach out to someone you know. Find someone you are proud of and let them know. I might have quit before now if not for your words of kindness. So tell someone what you think, and you might help them to stay the course and follow their dream. This is not my dream, but it is hugely beneficial to finding my narrative and taking back control of my trauma.
I am no longer the victim in this story. I am the crazy dog lady who finds strength in her past and uses it to light the way.
One more thing... We often worry whether we should reach out at all. I have never been through the experiences that you have been through so how can I help? I worry that I am not the right person. It feels brazen to think I have anything that you need... But here is what I have learned. You do not need to have been through the same experience to understan what it is to feel hopeless or desparate or OUT OF CONTROL!! We have all been there and felt these emotions. You can relate to the feeling even if you can't relate to the exact situation. And sometimes all you need to say is, "That sucks... I am sorry you feel that way."
Today, Let's do a Little Bit More Thanks and Giving ;)
If you need help call the National Suicide Prevention Lifeline Phone Number 1-800-273-8255
Reach out when you see someone who may be in need.
A Little Bit More About Amy:
Amy Long is originally from California, but currently lives in Omaha, Nebraska. She in a member of the United States Air Force and works as a Base Wounded Warrior Advocate. Her career in the military gave her many opportunities to travel and see the world and for that she is grateful. She also had the opportunity to get her BS in Psychology and will apply to Graduate School to complete her Ph.D. in Clinical Psychology.
Over the years, Amy fought to "get over it" alone and suffered the consequences that came with not listening when friends and family suggested she seek help. This was a hard lesson to learn, but now she works to recover from her invisible wounds and to teach others that you do not harm yourself by reaching out... You harm yourself by NOT reaching out for help.
Amy is proudly recovering from PTS, Depression, and Anxiety. This is not something that just disappears, but with help she is finding her "new normal" and regaining the independence that comes from analyzing and getting to know yourself through therapy.
For peer support and motivation visit her other Social Media pages for more information: