The Exile Files

Raging Against the Outrageous. Laughter and Insanity Abound.

Archive for March 2nd, 2022

He Ain’t Heavy…

Posted by Exile on March 2, 2022

Remember that? The Hollies. He ain’t heavy, he’s my brother…
I’ve taken on some volunteer work. We have an organisation here that looks after our war veterans. We also have a huge organisation that supports athletes and all form of sports. Someone, at some point, thought it might be a good idea to bind part of the former to part of the latter and so it was that “Soldatersporten” (soldier sports) was born. I am now a part of that.
Long story done short; a couple of these veterans want to take part in the Invictus games in Holland later this year. They are archers. The organisation wanted someone to be the group co-ordinator. They were having problems finding someone so they contacted all the local archery clubs and then they found me. Well, they found our club chairman and he put the idea to me. I said OK and we let them know I was available. A veteran myself, a qualified trainer and I had the time to be there at the archery range.
I was accepted for the job in a moment…

A couple of them served in Bosnia. A dirty little war and it has left its mark. My lads are suffering with PTSD and, thankfully, no physical injuries. Others, I believe, served in the Afghan. We don’t talk about that much. I let them come and go as they please and we accept each other as we are. So far, its all been good and I do actually enjoy being around these men. They have a black sense of humour that I have sometimes missed. They train hard, two of them are doing extremely well and I can’t really help them any more. They are ready for competition already. Now it is just a matter of training and achieving the consistent accuracy. I cheer and encourage. And that is enough, apparently. Any problems that arise are placed in my lap and I have to get it sorted. This is mainly equipment and facilities and coordination that I am talking about. I’m not a therapist.
I have achieved some form of acceptance. One of them said, “We’re glad they found you. We were afraid they would find some civvie who doesn’t have a clue what we’ve been through.”
Commendation indeed, even if it was hard won in a totally different war torn environment.
We’re all damaged…. we just don’t show it or discuss it except, maybe, to or with each other.

That’s brotherhood for you..

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