Just wanted to send a message of thanks. I started listening to the show a few months ago, and like most kept coming back for the positive message. It’s been amazing to not only hear these stories of exceptional fortitude, but moreover to hear the vulnerability of individuals that I hold in such high esteem and regard. There has been a pearl in every episode, but the episode with Taya Kyle came into my wife and I’s life at the perfect time.
When we got married like everyone else we vowed to stand by each other through anything, neither of us knowing the demons we were yet to face. I’m a flight paramedic and love my job and we shared in the elation of my opportunity to work at the pinnacle of pre-hospital medicine. However, it didn’t take long for the gruesome reality of the job to take its toll on me and our marriage. We’d been suffering through a rough season. We’ve fought through a child being born prematurely that required resuscitation, and a delivery that nearly took my wife’s life.
This was followed by a miscarriage a year later. Compounding these stresses has been the memories of those that I couldn’t save. Like most, it’s something that I’ve shoved down, repress, and act like I’m invincible; and again like most thought that if I could suppress my triggers that I’d be fine. This worked until the fragility of my mind was made keenly aware. I was sitting on the couch when our 8-year-old little girl asked if I could braid her hair. Full well knowing that I had no idea what I was doing, daddy wasn’t going to tell her no. Little did I know that as I gathered her long blonde hair in my hands that my mind would transport me into a living nightmare. Hands trembling I fumbled for an excuse, “Daddy just can’t get it right” while in my minds eye was sitting in a helicopter, in the dark, under NVGs, with another little girls little blonde braid in my hands. I could feel the vibrations of the aircraft, smell jet fuel, and ambient sounds as if through the headset in my helmet reliving the fight we fought for this little girl.
Through all of this God has blessed me with a woman stronger than I am. With the capacity of compassion to love me through rough moments like this and many others. Even in the midst of us being at our wits end with each other, being willing to sheath her sword and comfort and protect me from the demons in my life. This podcast has taught me that never quitting in no way equals never losing. It has taught me not to burry it down and fake it until I make it. Instead it has given me the prospective to realize that it takes more than being willing to take one on the chin, but to be proud of the scar that it leaves and to be willing to learn from it. This has allowed my wife and I to share our pain as teammates, and has changed our outlook on life and our marriage. God bless you all, and again my most sincere thanks, and God bless the women that hold us together.