My name is Charlie Fontenot. I live in Breaux Bridge, Louisiana, with my mamma, pappa, and my little sister, Cherie', who is seventeen. (I'm twenty five.) We also have a dog, a blue heeler my sister named "Gizmo".
I just got out of the hospital; been there in what seemed like forever. Got my legs blown off by a bomb when a suicide scuzzball attacked our vehicle, blew himself up. My buddies were killed; I was the only one who survived, but not without a price.
This was in Iraq.
In addition to my legs getting blown off, I have shrapnel wounds everywhere; have terrible pain. I also have TBI. Memory ain't what it used to be, especially short term. Can remember things from way back; have trouble rememberin' things not even five minutes after you've told me.
It seems I'm always goin' to the VA in Lafayette for therapy or doctor appointments; at times it gets a little monotonus. I hate dealin' with the damn VA; half of those doctors have no clue what I've been through; seems I'm always arguin' with them.
Tryin' to get on VA disability now; they keep tellin' me it's all in my head (the pain, I mean). Fine. Let them mofo's live in my body; then they'll truly see what pain I'm really in, and that it ain't "inside my head"! GRRRRR!!!!
Poor mamma and pappa, they have had a time with me. While I appreciate them takin' care of me, I know they are plumb tuckered out. My baby sister, she has had the toughest time. She remembers how we used to roughhouse together; now I'm concentratin' on tryin' to get my life back.
She will look at me and cry, cry, cry. It really makes me feel bad. I know it ain't her fault I got blowed up; I chose to defend our country. It was me who went, not her. It was just an ugly incident that happened; we all have to learn to move past it, even though it left its ugly mark on my body and mind.
I do get angry, though, when people down Veterans or those who went to war. They have to remember somethin': if it weren't for people like us, they couldn't enjoy the freedoms they have (good or bad). They didn't go to war; we did, because we loved (love) our country and what it stands for.
I really haven't been out since getting home from the hospital; I just wonder what my friends will do when they first see me without legs or half of my head missing/scarred. I know I look a fright; I just wonder if they will run away or help me, accept me. I guess time will only tell once I'm well enough to get out to do things.
Gettin' there, but not there just yet. Still have a ways to go. *sighhh*
Pappa, he is making our home accessible for me. He's been workin' on it practically nonstop. Right now it's hard for me to get around in my chair; pappa, he wants to change that.
Well, I am really hurtin' again, and it's makin' me nauseated, so I am going to lie down, try to get some rest. Seems that is all I do anymore; yet I feel like I haven't slept in a million years. I have those awful memories. Oh, those memories! I will write in here again another day; until then, this is Charlie Fontenot sayin' over and out!
*To be continued.*