by Bradley J. Burt
The 11th Hour—Navigating Your Way Out.
August of 2017, was my first experience surviving from the 11th hour of hopelessness and despair that opened my mind to try to live my life. Freedom and release quickly built my confidence after downloading the PTSD Coach app. I had begun my Cognitive Processing Therapy at the Madison VA and was journaling my intrusive thoughts. Thoughts manifested into moments of hopelessness that would not go away. “What will I do for work? I will I feed my kid? What will become of me five years from now?”
After receiving a referral for outpatient treatment through the Veterans Crisis Line, I was able to step on the path to seek help.
I had come to realize how quick and easy taking the time to call the Veterans Crisis Line was, but I needed something more. I needed to navigate my way out. I was in Las Vegas, NV, where I had started to develop signs of my first panic attack. After reaching into my pocket to grab my phone to call the Veterans Crisis Line, I noticed a sign in the casino that guided me to download the PTSD Coach app and did.
Survival is the Key to Ending Veteran Suicide. Download the PTSD Coach app.
“Ok, I am having a panic attack, now what?”
Take two minutes to collect yourself and practice a simple breathing technique I learned from John Tesh. Inhale and hold for fourteen seconds—exhale for fourteen seconds slowly—Take a deep breath and let it out. Do this as many times as it takes to survive being overwhelmed. Think of a happy moment. Mine is the night I won a triple-double seven-jackpot at the Monte Carlo Casino after seeing Cher. Las Vegas, NV has many magical moments. Find your Las Vegas.
Research Your Condition.
Do not ever hesitate to explore the internet for the means to end social and environmental panic attacks. My condition and diagnosis did not allow much information other than my situation was treatable but permanent. Navigating the maze of mental health must be fought minute by minute. Taking a break is critical before becoming too overwhelmed.
The sole mission here at Outpost 422 is to help talk you down from following through with thoughts of suicide. We are all Battle Buddies in the war at home. You are valuable. You are valor. You are worthy to hold on one more day. Reach out on Facebook at Outpost 422 and we will be there to offer blogs and tips to help you see this through. We want you to know you can make it with the help of all of us who are the survivors of the 22.