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Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado

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'So You Think You've Got It Rough?!': My Story. (Part One) (Rated PG-13)
By Karen Lynn Vidra, The Texas Tornado
Wednesday, July 06, 2011

Rated "PG13" by the Author.

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A former Marine shares his story since coming back from the first Iraq war.

Image of eagle statue (c) 2010, by Karla Dorman.

Oh, you think you have it so good.  Well, maybe you do.  I'm glad for you.

My life since coming back from Iraq has been anything BUT good.  Let me tell you my story and see how good you really do have it.  Maybe then you can think about what others may go through before you smart off at the mouth and act all holier than thou and shit.

For starters, look at yourself in a full length mirror.  Look at yourself closely and carefuly.  Then look at someone like me, a person who is a shell of his former self.  Then tell me your life is so fucking bad.  Come on.  I DARE you.

Then look at someone like me.  Look at the fact that I am missing both legs and must use a wheelchair (or, for short trips, a pair of crutches) to get by.  I do have prosthetic legs, but right now, I'm to use my chair; my legs are in the shop, getting fixed.  It will be weeks before I get them back.

Got my legs blowed off in a bomb blast.  It was a roadside bomb.  Damn motherfuckin' ragheads thought it'd be cute to blow up some Americans, so they tried to.  I was with five other guys.  Four of 'em were killed instantly; the fifth died later in an Iraqi hospital: his injuries were too severe for him to be able to survive.  Well, guess God had the last laugh, 'cause I'm still here, raisin' all sorts of holy hell.

I was in the Maines ten years: was on my way up to becoming a Leutenant General in the Corps when I got nailed by the bomb.  There went my military career.  Finito.  Kaput.  End of story.  That was it.  That ended my career.

After ten years of loyal service, they done let me go.  "We don't need you any more", was what they basically told me after I'd spent nearly six months in a hospital, then six more months trying to adjust to my new life sans legs.  It wasn't easy.  Still isn't.  My nights are often colored with nightmares and severe, unrelenting pain.  My brain thinks my legs are still there; I look down and see nothing.  I also have nightmares; I find it hard to sleep most nights because nightmares continue to plague me.

I have been seeing a psychologist at the VA hospital here in Dallas, where I live, but they don't know jack shit.  Seems like I get a different doctor every time; it's no wonder the VA system don't know a lot about me: they can't get their heads out of their butts and co-ordinate with one another about the best way to deal with people like myself.

THEN they tell me that it's all in my head.  YEAH, RIGHT.  I have no fuckin' legs, and they tell me it's all in my head??  They think I did this to myself for attention??  I think the hell not!!

Still fightin' with them, tryin' to get on VA disability.  Nobody wants to help; it's getting to the point where I want nothing more than to blow my goddanged brains out because my life since Iraq  has been one fucked up mess that never seems to end!!

Well, I've managed to make myself cry yet again; sems that is all I've done since coming back!  THEN people complain about their lives.  Hell, let them live in MY shoes!!

~End of part one.~   


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Reviewed by Michelle Kidwell Power In The Pen 7/6/2011
Powerful story here Karen, thank you for sharing
In Christs Love
Michelle~
Reviewed by Karla Dorman, The StormSpinner 7/6/2011
There, but for the Grace of God, go I ... our Veterans should lack for NOTHING. Especially gratitude and honor for service and sacrifice, paid in full. Well done, Karen.

(((HUGS))) and love, Karla.
Reviewed by Joy Hale 7/6/2011
I hear your anger and cannot blame you for speaking out. I also hurt in my heart for you, a service person whose only reason for being in Iraq was to serve your country and do your part to save the people back home. The military just let you go? Assinine! You could have still been an assett to the Marines... a desk job, teaching courses on wartime, so many things! Karen, from this point on you will be in my prayers. Dear God, you need all the help and prayers you can get! You have a friend in Texas who will be thinking of you and praying for you. God bless you and keep you in the palm of His loving and compassionate hand. Joy L. Hale


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