Since I last wrote earlier this year, things between us and Uncle Travis have improved. NOT much, mind you, but any improvement is better than nothing.
Uncle Travis, who lives with us, was injured in Iraq and lost his leg as a result. He is now walking on a pair of crutches, but the bad memories still remain. He sometimes has nightmares or starts screaming out in pain when his mind starts messing up again (it somehow thinks his leg is still there when it actually isn't).
Uncle Travis is my daddy's younger brother. He lives with us because his own parents abandoned him when they discovered that he was badly injured: "they couldn't cope", grandpa stated to daddy one day. It's been a huge adjustment on all our parts.
In case you don't remember who I am, my name is Stevie Bechtel. I am 11 years old.. I live with my family: my mom and dad, my Uncle Travis, my younger sister Kristen (9), and my baby brother, Mason, who is one-and-a-half.
I am happy to say that Uncle Travis is going to counseling to help sort out his feelings about the war and what he went through. He goes two times a week at the local VA clinic here in town. In addition, he has physical and occupational therapy (physical on Monday and Tuesday, occupational on Wednesday and Thursday; his counseling appointmsnts are on Thursday and Friday). Saturday and Sunday are his "free" days.
Uncle Travis takes a bunch of pills to help with the pain he still suffers. They do help a little, but they make him goofy-headed or he sleeps up to 12 hours a day. He is usually in bed before seven but up at the crack of dawn the next day and the cycle starts all over again. He hardly has any time to function because he has medicine-head. I really feel sorry for him.
With Christmas coming and all, we are hoping that it will help him forget about his troubles ... at least for a little while. Today we are going to decorate the Christmas tree and Daddy (and a neighbor) are going to put up the outdoor Christmas lights. Mom will take us Christmas shopping later this week and on Saturday we will all go to the annual "Breakfast-With-Santa" shindig at the local high school and then see the parade (coupled with fireworks, which are after the parade and Christmas tree lighting ceremony) later that night. It is going to be a very busy Saturday.
I just hope that Uncle Travis will be up to it. I would hate for him to miss any of the excitement. If anybody needs excitement (or joy) in their lives, it's my Uncle Travis 'cause he's been through so much this year and he's really suffered as a result.
Well, I gotta get ready and book it to school, so I will write in here later on, with another update. Sorry it's taken me so long to respond, but writing isn't really my bag. Take care and God bless; this is Stevie Bechtel saying so long!
~To be continued.~