#HurricaneIrma Evacuation for Veterans

hurricanes

 

Hey Tampa friends-time to brace for impact.  The storm has shifted and it looks like you will be the first direct impact then she heads up to the Panhandle to us.  We got this.

Something to remember if you are an evacuee and you are a Veteran, you can go to your nearest VA for care.  More information on that is available HERE.

There is a list of Florida shelters by county HERE.

Middle Georgia has quite a few shelters and they are listed by county HERE.

A list of Alabama shelters is HERE and it includes livestock shelters.

Keep a running list of things to do and accomplish so that your Veteran can stay busy and hopefully avoid the triggers for a bit longer that this siuation will eventually irritate.

If you have not been able to locate something you are looking for, you are welcomed to email me at contact AT michellesimpson DOT net and let me know what it is.  I will work to find it for you.

REMEMBER:

Wash your laundry and dishes and keep this up-we don’t know when power will be back up and once your hot water tank runs out, that’s it.

Fill up your water bottles, ice tea pitchers and canning jars with tap water for drinking.  Fill your bathtub with water in the event they have to shut down the water system, this can be used to fill the toilet tank to flush.  If you have a green upright rolling recycle bin, you can also fill this for the same purpose.

Cook what you have in the freezer.  If you can’t eat it all, divide it into containers and bags and put it back in the freezer.  This can be used as cool packs for the ice chest and as it thaws you can use it for food.

If you have a grill, move it to your garage. You can cook on this with the garage door cracked after the storm is over.

Take care and check in when this is past!

 

 

 

 

 

 

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What A Year

I have sat down a million times to write my thoughts down since the election.  Some how, I still can not find the words.

 

I spent much of the month of November crying and much of the time since has become a blur of lies, stress and concern for the direction of our nation.  My Veteran is increasingly resistant to even leaving the house for fear of an argument with a Nazi that results in him getting arrested.  No matter your political affiliation, if you don’t have serious reservations about the direction of this Administration, then I can’t help you because you are already that lost.

 

Once the symptoms had progressed for my Veteran so much that we were cancelling any public events or interactions for him, I was able to get him into another outpatient program.  Sadly, along with the current Administrations belief that privatization will solve everything, he was placed in a facility that had very few Veterans.  The bulk of the group were people with a variety of addictions that eventually caused a strain on the class and security issues.  He was unable to complete the program.

 

Since then, it has been varying scenarios of the same nature.  He can not watch the news, he doesn’t trust one single person in Congress to do what is right any more and he would rather not live here.  Since we haven’t won the lottery, what are our options?

 

I hope that each of you are finding better ways to cope.  Is there something that helps most?  Have you had to change your life radically?

 

I hope you are finding peace while we are looking for it too.

Happy New Year’s Eve! (Look out for a Veteran)

colorfulfireworks

What a year.  Seriously.  In our house, we are really ready for 2016 to be over.  At this time of year, I am always hyper aware of how difficult this evening can be for Veterans to get through so I thought I would post our top five ways to get through the night.

  1.  Listen to music:  Headphones in the ears with your favorite music can really help ease the noise and the triggers the noise creates.  Whether you opt to jam or meditate, choose a playlist for tonight that will help you feel groovy.  Here is one I made if you have Spotify.
  2. Hug a pillow:  This may seem strange but one of my Veterans biggest triggers is the vibration, particularly from unruly neighbors that shoot them off near our house.  Body pillows are cheap and holding one to your chest can minimize the shaking feeling.
  3. Watch a movie:  We usually opt for an action movie right as the sun begins to go down.  This gives the drunk bozos a good hour and a half to set off their fireworks and depending how into it you are, you will barely notice the noise because of everything going on.  If you have surround sound, this is 100 times better because it then just seems like background noise. (Best thing we have ever purchased)
  4. Eat your feelings:  This is one that I got from an Occupational Therapist.  If you can tolerate crunchy things, make a NYE bowl.  Depending on your preference for salty or sweet, fill it with items that are crunchy when you eat them.  This is a perfect pairing with the movie because you are desensitizing yourself to the noise in your ears at the same time as keeping occupied.  Ours consist of crunchy pickles, carrots, nuts, cheese and some sort of chip or cracker.
  5. Practice patience:  Once the flurry of war fails to be the lead story on the news any longer, people just don’t take it into consideration.  We are less than 3% of the population and on your block, I bet there are many people who don’t even know anything about what we go through on these holidays.  You can put out a sign, you can ask people not to do it or you can call the cops when they do (we have had to do this) but ultimately, the day will pass and life will go on.  If you can try to handle it better each year, there may be a time when you don’t even notice what is happening any more.

We can dream, right?

No one appreciates warriors until the enemy knocks at the gates.

Here is hoping you and yours have a lovely transition to 2017 and we make it the most amazing adventure.  That’s what I am hoping for any way…