I was at work and a web application refused to work properly. I knew that there was nothing I could do to fix it and it was keeping me from being able to do my work in a timely manner. Needless to say, this made me inordinately angry. I was seething under the surface. It was like someone had pushed the big red button marked, 'do not push!'. I knew that if I didn't go somewhere private to get this out, I was going to get myself in trouble. I walked outside and bummed a cigarette off of one of my co-workers and hid around the corner of the building and punched the wall. I didn't punch it hard - just with enough force to snap me out of my rage and bring me back to the here and now. Feeling helpless to do anything about my situation in Iraq was the worst feeling I have ever felt (along with the guilt that I survived at all). Punching the wall brought me back to 'now'. I was able to regain control of the anger and put it back into perspective. I went back in and talked to my area manager about the problem I was having and felt much better. I did what I had to - I couldn't believe that it took that much to snap out of it, but even with my worst knee-jerk reactions, I have been able to maintain control. For that I am eternally grateful.
As I continue my life with PTSD, I will share my challenges and discoveries on this blog.