Veterans Day 2018

Updated: Nov 15, 2018


Guest Contributor:

Ivy Edwards-Sledge

Veteran of the United States Army

1988-1995


I lost a dear friend/Sister in Desert Storm and suffered from survivor's guilt. Minutes only separated me from being in the very spot where she lost her life. I know that many of you- just like me, have been plagued with guilt for far too long. It's time to take back our power. We were on an assignment and we completed our assignment with no ill intent. We could not predict nor did we desire any of the negative outcomes that happened as a result of us performing our assignment. How can we feel guilty about that?


Top 5 Coping Strategies


1. Stay in the moment. Realize and recognize that you are not "there."


2. Get connected to resources that will push you past your fears. Be willing to communicate

what you are going through. Communication helps you understand the pain, which is half the battle. The other half of the battle is management. It's hard to manage what we don't see- the mental pain. Being able to communicate about our pain in a way that gives it physical characteristics allows others to understand how to treat it.


3. Seek help. Understand that when you share your experiences, the burden is not as heavy. The more you hold on to, the more weighed down you will feel. Free yourselves from that unneeded pain.


4. Be open-minded. Accept the fact that you have a "new normal."


5. Trust the process. Be willing to receive help and follow through with your care plan.


Ivy’s Book Recommendation

In “Camouflaged Sisters Silent No More,” 12 female veterans tell stories of how they made it through- not only on the battlefield, but in life. It's time for us to stop "camouflaging” ourselves and live our best lives- on and with purpose. ”Camouflaged Sisters Silent No More” can be found at www.IvyBEdwards.com.


Much Love & respect,


Your Sister Ivy


Resources

The Veterans Crisis Line

Connects Veterans in crisis, their families, and friends with qualified, caring Department of Veterans Affairs responders through a confidential toll-free hotline, online chat, or text. Responders will work with you to help you get through any personal crisis, even if that crisis does not involve thoughts of suicide. Dial 1-800-273-8255 and (Press 1) to talk to someone now. A confidential chat is also available online or through text. To chat online (https://www.veteranscrisisline.net/ChatTermsOfService.aspx) or send a text to 838255 to receive confidential support anonymously.


Easter Seals

Provides a range of resources and mental health services to veterans and their family members.

http://www.easterseals.com/our-programs/military-veterans/


Give an Hour: Giving Help and Hope

Provides mental health services to those currently serving in the military, veterans, and their families.

https://giveanhour.org/get-help/#providerSearch


Together we Served

The largest online community of Veterans that allows you to find people you served with, engage with other veterans, and remember your service.

https://togetherweserved.com


#veteransday2018 #happyveteransday #blackmentalwellness


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