The Helo Drop

The Helo Drop

1. Write down your deepest emotions and thoughts about the trauma or traumas. How has this event touched your life? You might describe what happened, what you saw and felt, and what you remember. You might also want to tie this event to other parts of your life, such as your childhood and your relationship with your spouse or significant other, parents, family members, friends, and co-workers. How might it be related to people you love? How is it connected to who you would like to become in the future, who it is that you have been in the past, or who you are now? You might even write about your dreams and haunting thoughts relating to the trauma, in addition to exploring your very deepest emotions.
     Hopelessness, powerlessness. The damned thing just fell straight down, plunged from the air and disappeared just as fast as it had fallen. From what I understand they invert and survivors of the actual crash often become disoriented and swim deeper, drowning themselves. Nobody survived this incident.
2. Write about all the ways you remember the experience(s)- sights, sounds, smells, memories, thoughts, feelings, and so on. You may link the experience the experience to other important things in your life. You may want to write about the same experience or about another aspect of it, or a different event.
      I felt like a kid- unable to have any real effect on the outcome. As a result, I believe, I try to be to be in control of all possible outcomes.
     What was really bizarre is how “peaceful” things were (not like the “Boat Pocket Incident”). In spite of the chaos that I’m sure they experienced aboard the helo, it was a beautiful day and the operation was proceeding normally until the crash. We were really well organized on board. What a horrible way to die. The day was sunny, warm and pleasant as we were at flight quarters.
3. Explore your thoughts and feelings about whatever emotional upheaval bothered you the most. Focus on some of the emotions that came up after the event. Did you think that you were going to die, or that you were responsible for what happened? Write about what you now know; that you did not die, or were not to blame. You can also write about the same things you wrote about earlier, such as powerful experiences or emotions you haven’t shared with others.
     I did not think I was going to die at any point in this process. But I did feel powerless, as I’m sure everyone else did. So close to us, both physically and emotionally. I was not to blame here, I’m not certain that anyone was. (I never heard the results of the investigation afterwards.) Some of us just die, military work is dangerous shit.
4. Write the story about what happened to you, and if you want, include what you did to help yourself survive. Even though no one else may see your story, it is important that you write about all the ways you remember the trauma- sights, sounds, smells, memories, thoughts, feelings, and so on. You may link your survival to other important things in your life. You may want to write about the same subject or about another aspect of the event that you haven’t covered.

 

5. This event has effected not just you, but everyone else around you. The ways in which you think and talk to people about it may have changed over time. However painful your experiences have been, you will have learned from them. Think of another person who has gone through a similar event. Knowing now what most helped you survive, what would you say to that other person?
     Lots of folks felt bad about this happening. As a result, I genuinely hate heilocopters and PAX transfers. I would tell someone else that sometimes some of us just die, even when everything is done right. It sucks, but it’s true. (Yes, I realize that I hold myself to a wholly higher standard.)
6. Imagine that it is ten years from now and you’re looking back on what happened. How will you want to think about the event(s) at this future time? What do you think you will see as the most important parts of what happened when you look back on it?
      10 years later (in this case, 28 or so) I’d say that I’d like to think of the persons involved, well, APPRECIATE their LOSSES in carrying out their duties. What I see as the most important takeaway is the fickle & arbitrary way in which some lives are taken.

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