Army; Conflict in Afghanistan; Canadian Armed Forces; PTSD
I served as a Infantryman in the military from January 2008 to April 2014. I served with 2RCR India Coy. Also did a Combat tour in 2010 in Southern Afghanistan. Was accommodated with Sacrifice Medal, Queens Jubilee Medal, Campaign Star, Mention in Dispatch and South West Asia Medal. Also was Awarded the 2011 Soldier of the Year for 2 RCR. Completed the 2009 Military Ironman, Crew Commander, Gunner, PLQ 1-6 etc. Achieved a early promotion to Corporal in 2011.
I am diagnosed with PTSD and Anxiety Disorder 5 years ago, have gone through group and individual counseling. I was off work for my mental illness for 2.7 years. However I am now back to work full time as a Correctional Peace Officer for the Calgary Remand Center.
My hope in speaking with groups is to talk about my military experiences but also the battle and triumphs of having PTSD/Anxiety. To bring awareness by telling my story of being in a dark place. How I lost everything but through motivation, support, hard work, soldier mentality of resilience there is a way to have a life. This message is very important to me and I have valuable resources and a story to tell. I am very passionate about giving back, supporting my veterans / First Responders. As its our duty to honour and support those who battle with mental illness of any kind.
I look forward to sharing my experiences about war, mental illness and recovery, as this comes best from those who lived it.