"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

Wednesday, January 14, 2015

Like a Ton of Bricks ...

Painful Memories

By CJ Heck

The other day, I posted an invitation for you to write something for Memoirs from Nam -- maybe you remember it, maybe not.

A wise man once told me that trying to do what we consider to be an impossible task is like "trying to touch the sun from a step-ladder".

I know all of you left something behind in Vietnam. You have carried -- and still carry -- a heavy load of things you never want to remember.  And those things you have chosen to keep alive in your memory will always be with you.

I understand all too well that for some, what happened in their lives, in whatever capacity in Vietnam, is so varied that it is impossible to quantify, let alone write about. There is no one who can ever duplicate the experiences that one person has gone through.
I know, I understand, and I care -- and I hope this open letter to you will help to better explain my invitation to write something for the blog:

"I appreciate what you went through and experienced in country and I know you saw things you choose to forget and you never want to remember.

Most have carried it around silently for nearly half a century, like a ton of bricks, weighing heavy on the heart. 
Others have found that carrying it around isn't working for them any longer and they're ready to face it, brick by invisible brick. 
The vets that are writing for Memoirs From Nam are writing to heal, and to educate the rest of the world about who and what a Vietnam vet is, the importance of brotherhood, loss, and to tell the truth about our war.

They write about what they are comfortable with, and what they are able to talk about, whether it's a funny story about the mess hall, how they spent Christmas Eve, how much a Dear John Letter hurt, or what it meant to them to see Bob Hope on one of his tours.

What the contributing vets choose to write about isn't what's important. What is important is, they are choosing to write about something.   Please send whatever you would like to write about.
Thank you most sincerely for your service and Welcome Home. 
With my warmest regard and respect,

“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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