TOBI BENTON

Wounded Warrior, Wounded Home: A Review

Wounded Warrior, Wounded Home: A Review

Wounded Warrior, Wounded Home: A Review

I would open the emails, scan the book description, and then move the book review offer to the trash.  I haven’t had much “extra” time in this season, and though I signed up for historical fiction, I rarely make it past cover pictures with women in period clothing and tales woven with romance.

Oh, who am I kidding?  I just don’t enjoy writing I don’t have to chew before I swallow.  Now before you’re tempted to label me an elitist snob, understand I’ve asked God to let me just have fun in my reading selections.  I went three years straight reading only non-fiction, and most of it was church leadership and small group ministry material.  Oh, and my subscription to Leadership Journal.  Don’t laugh.  I made this last move from Germany without my 2005-2008 collection.

Okay.

I’m also signed up for non-fiction reviews.  And though I have time constraints and a mild case of nerves at trying something new like book reviews, when this title arrived in my inbox it was beyond me to say no.  My eyes were brimmed with tears in reading the book description.  You see, I am a career military wife.  I am blessed to have a warrior who has not been scarred by the face of war yelling in his.  His two deployments just disappeared.  The first to Afghanistan evaporated two weeks before his deployment.  The second, to Iraq, on Friday before he was to ship out on Monday.  The only real grief I have processed with my husband is his burden of not standing with his brothers and sisters in uniform.  After the second cancelled deployment he told his superiors he had volunteered two times.  From now on He will let God determine what frontline he stands on.  And quietly I thank God my warrior does not bear the scars, external and internal, that so many I have served over the years do.

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I’m not in a location I can scramble eggs anymore for the Wounded Warriors transitioning from down-range to medical facilities home in America.  I miss this simple offering so much.  I’d ask, “How long has it been since you’ve had real eggs?  Where’s home?  What’s the first thing you want to eat there?”  Silly questions, but the only hug I could give, gloved and standing behind a food table.  My way of a few moments of “I see you” for them.

I guess you might say one of my missions is to really see people.  And to help you see them as well.  Odds are you look at a veteran or someone who loves one every day.  My hope is that I can share things here at Favored One to help you really see them.

Wounded Warrior, Wounded Home by Waddell and Orr will do just that.  Whether you suffer from PTSD and TBI, live with or love someone who does, or you want to see beneath the reactions of the 1000’s who suffer with PTSD and TBI, this book really does provide hope for healing.

Through Marshéle’s voice, this 25-year career US Navy SEAL Waddell family throws their front door wide open and invites you past the living room to the kitchen table to share their intimate story of a family battling for wholeness against post-traumatic stress disorder and traumatic brain injury.  Waddell and Orr, a USMC Vietnam veteran with a combined Marine Corps and Air Force active duty career of 25 years and more than thirty years of experience in clinical psychology, behavioral medicine, and pain management have authored a book that informs the reader from the inside out.

It is my prayer that Wounded Warrior, Wounded Home will guide you in constructing your own plan for physical, emotional, and spiritual wholeness, will honor you for your personal sacrifice and service to your nation, and will inspire you to re-engage in compassionate service in your community as a part of your own healing.

From the Introduction to the Epilogue, Waddell paints vivid pictures with personal stories of what relationship with the wounded looks and feels like.  Defining Living Grief and the pain of shattered dreams, we hear throughout the book voices of 25 other families sharing what this fractured intimacy looks like.  These different voices offer unity in the reality of PTSD and TBI and yet different views inside the problem, which in itself offers the reader a chance to see themselves in the same struggle.  Each chapter ends with pointed reflection questions.

Waddell and Orr move us from identifying the reality that brother-in-arms or sisters-in-arms create a relationship identity that even marriage or family bonds can’t penetrate, to confronting the need for forgiveness as an important step towards hope and healing.  The mystery of Compassion Fatigue and a detailed Mile Marker list to help discern where you might be on the journey towards burn out clearly define the risk taken when a care-giver neglects replenishment and personal physical, mental, and spiritual health.  With the strongest message wrapped in the hope of the faithfulness of our own Wounded Healer and the power of friendship, insightful tools to engage the spiritual battle that began with coming home fill the last three chapters.

There are sections dedicated to defining the difference between PTSD and TBI, how civilians can help and not hurt our wounded families, and a very full additional resource list.  Ultimately, this book is an invaluable teaching resource for the mind and the heart, whether you are dealing with military related PTSD and TBI or any other trauma that has cracked the foundation of a life and broken its resiliency.  This book is for all of us, because we wade each day into a sea of people who have had shattered dreams and are trying to piece them back into a mosaic that light shines through.

Thanks for staying with my heart in this, Favored One.  Might I give you one more firm nudge towards opening your heart to this issue?

According to iCasualties.org, the number of wounded warriors from both Operation Iraqi Freedom and Operation Enduring Freedom, as of November, 2012, was 50,212 wounded.  Nearly every one of these warriors has parents.  Half of them are married.  The injuries of each wounded warrior affect at least half a million family members and close friends of warriors with visible wounds alone.  Add the warriors with invisible wounds to the mix and the sisterhood mushrooms to tens of millions of us.

The next line?  We are family.  It really doesn’t matter what side of the political line you stand on.  The reality is whether you agree or don’t agree with every conflict our country is involved in you are part of a vast family desperate to find its way home to a place of peace, safety, and might we be bold enough to pray ~ joy.  Please join me, Favored One, in informing your head so you might reach out with your heart and touch those in need.

“Available March 2013 at your favorite bookseller from Revell, a division of Baker Publishing Group.”

6 thoughts on “Wounded Warrior, Wounded Home: A Review

  1. Tereasa

    Wow. You made me want to read it and I don’t have any close to me in the military. I can identify with the wounded healer, though. A lot of adopted children have PTSD and TBI. It is always good to read about the things we are not directly affected by so that we can be prepared to offer compassion when the opportunity arises. Good review!

    1. tobibenton Post author

      Thanks, Tereasa. This was my first review and I think I chose the right book. I really think it offers valuable insight for anyone living with PTSD or TBI. I know the authors had these folks in mind, but I love the opportunity it gives for those on the outside of this struggle to see inside a bit. Your encouragement and affirmation mean a lot to me. Thanks!

  2. Nikki

    This couldn’t have come at a better time for me, Tobi, as I just finished “Fearless” — the testimony of a Navy Seal Team Six Operator, Adam Brown, who died on enemy lines… the way the book shared his faith captivated me from page one.

    and even though I don’t have family in the military, my best friend is a military wife and I love feeling closer to her and know how she needs me by increasing my knowledge — I’ll have to look for this one, thank you!

    excellent review!!

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