Now and then I’ll test my response to triggers. I thought maybe I had gotten better.
Instead, I find as my memories of battle become clearer and more graphic, I’m much more sensitive. Things that didn’t shake me before do now.
This video is what did it. I wanted to see if I could watch this without having an anxiety attack. I had a bad one but I managed to get through to the part with the C-130 flying off before I had to call it quits (I had seen this film before and you’ll understand why I didn’t want to see the rest):
For those who haven’t seen this, it’s from the movie “Hair.” Berger is impersonating Claude Bukowski so Claude can have one last meeting with his girlfriend, but while Claude was away, the unit shipped out and Berger- who had no military training- is carried away with no choice but to go to war clueless on what to do. It doesn’t end well.
I felt a deep, cold fear in me watching this. The guy was a little too convincing, with his subtle horror and last-ditch attempts to “go the wrong way” and make an escape. And at the end of the scene where his voice echoes in the big holds of that C-130… I couldn’t watch much more after that. It didn’t shake loose any memories of the ferry to Le Havre, but it brought back that very primal sort of fear that comes with a lot of my memories now.
I guess I need to avoid triggers for a while. Now I’m worried if I walk out of a room during a violent movie or when I see something about war or dead soldiers (especially the Western Front), or if I seem uneasy when certain songs play, I’m going to raise questions.
It’s not like me to flinch at things like this. I went several months after my memories began before I even got to this point. Why this much? Why now?
I’m either dealing with some really weird problems, or I’m the mother of all Munchhausen cases and I’m psyching myself into needless trauma.