"Sharing can be a way of healing. Grief and loss can isolate,
anger even alienate. Shared with others, emotions unite
as we see we aren't alone. We realize others weep with us."
~Susan Wittig Albert

Through our writing, we walk out of the darkness into the light
together, one small step at a time, recording history, educating
America, and we are healing.
~CJ/Todd Dierdorff

Sunday, July 6, 2014

The Color Purple: by Pamela Foster

Thrill Ride
Living with my husband, Jack, is an adventure. Well, maybe 'thrill ride' is a more accurate way to describe living with my Vietnam veteran.

For Jack, the control needs of post-traumatic stress have morphed over the years into secondary OCD. (For those of you who have read my book, My Life with a Wounded Warrior, I refer you to the chapter about the Lexus).

Well, Jack’s newest obsession is the desire to have his chest-length beard died purple.

See, a year or two ago, I had a line of purple died into the streak of gray in my hair. A fair warning to everyone: while I may look meek and mild, there is that one narrow streak of wildness lurking in the granny gray. 

I love that little rebellion against conformity, my friends love it, my publicist loves it -- she even used it in creating my brand as an author.

All was well.  Then, about six months ago, Jack began obsessing about having a purple Fu Manchu dyed into his white beard. 

He spent a lot of time in beauty salons, talking with young women about how this new fashion statement could be accomplished. This provided him the opportunity to flirt with a lot of pretty girls, but brought him no closer to his purple Fu Manchu. 

No one could figure out how to isolate the dye to just the Fu Manchu, without spotting the purple all through the rest of the beard.  I thought I was safe ...

Pam and Jack - 21 yrs. ago
Never, ever, never underestimate the power of a Marine who sets out to get something done. Doesn’t matter the consequences, he will accomplish his mission.

A week ago Jack had his beard cut. Except for a bushy, chest-length Fu Manchu. He saved the Fu Manchu. Today he’s having it died purple.

So, this morning, as I flipped through Facebook, stopping at the Spouses of PTSD Groups, I spotted a post by a woman with a similar complaint.

People had made comments like, “He looks fine to me.  Most of this is in his head,” or, “It’s a scam to get VA money.  Look at him. There’s nothing wrong with him.”

I'll bet Jack and I don’t have to hear that one for a while ...

About the Author

Twenty-one years ago, Pamela Foster married her hero. 

The author’s husband is a disabled Marine, a veteran of Vietnam, a man who would walk through fire for her without ever acknowledging that he ignited the flames.

Pamela Foster
Accompanying her hero on his quest to escape the dull gray of life-after-combat, Foster has lived in the redwoods of the Pacific Northwest, on the side of a volcano in Hawaii, in the Yucatan beside the Caribbean Sea, the stark desert of southern Arizona, the jungle of Panama, and the Ozark Mountains. 

"Never a Dull Moment" would be an appropriate title for a memoir of her life of loving this man living with raging Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

Foster has two published novels, a fistful of short stories in anthologies and boot box of earlier unfinished manuscripts. 

“I am only one, but I am one. I can't do everything, but I can do something. The something I ought to do, I can do, and by the grace of God, I will.” ~Everett Hale

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1 comment:

  1. Now, this story about Jack made me smile. I only had one request from the world while in Nam. A picture of some purple flowers. Got it... Funny how some things became so important.
    Al, 199th infantry 69 70


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