Every deployment takes a little more of Him away. Every time He goes away a less of Him comes home to me. The doctors call it PTSD but that makes it sound so innocent. Like it can be put in a little box with labels. In reality, PTSD is an ever changing monster that hides in the shadows of the man I love. One minute He is laughing and playing and the next He is gone. I can see the shadows fall across His eyes. I can see the torture He is facing alone and yet there is nothing I can do for Him in that moment.
Crowded restaurants have become a trigger for Him again. And bridges. And trash piles near the road. I know they will slowly fade and He will return to me again. His dreams will haunt Him less and He will eventually get a good nights sleep. It really makes me wonder what He sees over there. He is one of the strongest people I know but those images haunt him months and even years later. It must be some terrible things.
He wont tell me and for the most part I am ok with that decision. I know there is evil in the world. I watch the news and I read the papers but I am still able to live in my little bubble. He protects me from the horrible things He faces over there and I am very thankful for that. I worry enough about Him without knowing the actual Hell He walks into during every deployment.
I like to picture Him sitting on a beach drinking a beer. I do not want to know what His monsters look like because if they can do this to Him - I would not stand a chance.