From Baghdad to America: Life after War for a Marine and His Rescued Dog

From Baghdad to America: Life after War for a Marine and His Rescued Dog

Jay Kopelman

Language: English

Pages: 208

ISBN: 1602397430

Format: PDF / Kindle (mobi) / ePub

Lieutenant Colonel Jay Kopelman won the hearts of readers everywhere with his moving story of adopting an abandoned puppy named Lava from a hellish corner of Iraq. He opened the door for other soldiers to bring dogs home, and in From Baghdad to America, Kopelman once again leads the pack with his observations on the emotional repercussions of war.

Here, for the first time, Kopelman holds nothing back as he responds to the question, “Why did you save a dog instead of a person?” The answer reveals much about his inner demons—and about the bigger picture of Operation Iraqi Freedom. He talks about what it’s like to return to the States and examines the shocking statistics to come out of Iraq: Depression, suicide, alcohol abuse, and broken relationships are at record highs for the men and women who serve there. Kopelman credits Lava with helping him to endure combat and the pain of war, as well as helping him deal with the surprising difficulties of returning to everyday life. Civilians have a hard time understanding what being a Marine means, and the adjustment to living among them is hard for these soldiers. This book attempts to shed light on that for all readers.

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water and is used as a prewash; the second can contains hot soapy water (150 degrees F) for a second wash; and the third and fourth cans contain clear water which is kept boiling (rolling boil) throughout the work period. Long-handled wash brushes and a garbage can or pit are also needed. Additional cans may be used for garbage and waste. 2. PROCEDURES FOR CLEANING MESS GEAR : Scrape the food particles from eating utensils into a garbage can. : Using the long handled brush provided, wash

thrilled about the prospects of being “in the system,” as they say, and even less excited about being referred to something called the Mood Disorder Clinic and having to answer the questions on the Beck Depression Inventory, a survey of twenty-two questions that the head shrinkers use to determine if you’re depressed or not. My mind immediately races with thoughts of Xanax, Prozac, mood-altering chemicals—and worse. I picture myself going in as a perfectly functioning normal adult and coming out

keys—literally and figuratively—that will allow me to escape lockdown, I’m gonna be the good, calm, and cooperative monkey. So in Sigmund’s office we get to the nitty-gritty of why I’m here. “No, I don’t have PTSD,” I tell her. “I’m doing research for my new book. My publisher thought it would be good for me to write a chapter about therapy so that other people—you know, people who really need help, but are afraid to ask—will see that if a lieutenant colonel is going, it must be okay.”

selfdisclosure of psychological health issues, are overly conservative. Existing processes for psychological assessment are insufficient to overcome the stigma inherent in seeking mental health services. Ensuring a full continuum of excellent care for service members and their families Significant gaps in the continuum of care for psychological health remain, specifically related to which services are offered, where services are offered, and who receives services. Continuity of care is

quite an experience being there.” I was going through major turmoil in my personal life when Lava finally arrived, and having my dog back in my arms was the best feeling I’d had since returning. I felt it again after the accident. When I picked him up after he was hit by that car, I knew I mattered to him. He took my emotion—love, caring, whatever you want to call it—and reflected it back to me, as if I were a good person. As if I deserved to be loved. Without that, I think I would have gone as

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