therapy in a flyer…

survivors art hand-bill

Originally uploaded by jayfherron.

If anyone of you has been brave enough to read all of these things from beginning to present you would have learned that my formal education fairly well came to a halt when I was in junior high school. I one day will write about that in more detail,I have only written about it enough to describe the circumstances leading up to my enlistment-all complicated,I got on the complicated bus when I was born-I think !!
So point is-I never responded to schooling after my family moved to Virginia and I was about 13 or 14 years old….or about the eighth grade.
Basically-one has to read back to be abreast of the story…but the lacking of an education-missing the schooling-missing the events-missing the satisfiying the hunger a kid has to want to learn….it was there,and I could have had it-but things just did not go that way or that well.
In the Navy-on board the USS Vulcan during my orientation tour I met with the education officer on board and he later gave me some exams and I was good enough he offered to help me get into a program that would get me a college education and he started procedure to get me through the GED-which I never take to take a test,at least in the Navy…I ended up in barracks D.
All this pieces together.
About a year a ago my therapists at the VA mentioned an art exhibit at the University of Florida in the gallery at the Rietz Union building,which is a central building on campus and a very prominant one at that-its a huge place with a hotel and a theater-both kinds,and an open air theatre if those others werent enough….it is almost a small city with all there is to offer.
The exhibit was sponsered by the Survivors Art Foundation (,dot org!
I have always diddled with drawing and painting-it always seems to work arond stress and my art is not appealing to every one-that is for sure….and I was thrilled to have such an opportunity to have my drawings on display where everyone can see them-it was such a reward the night of the show to sit aside on a sofa in the galley lobby and watch the visitors as they reacted to each work of art-it was like being a rock star on stage…except no one knows who you are but it gave me the same feeling of stardom.
I felt exhilerated by this experience-it surpassed my want for a diploma and gave me such a boost in my self exteme. So-I like a lamb at slaughter pushed my shyness aside and asked if I could do anything to help to be sure there would be another….So,here I am!
I am phobic of large spaces-buildings,and definantly restrooms….and crowded ares are not very comfortable to me at all. Let me just be honest-they scare me to no end-terror rings in my ears like a sour violin note like the ones in a Alfred Hitchcock horror film-those notes that go on and on to ensure our fear factor is in full gear….peoples voices are amplified and I become self concience and think they are plotting against me-saying things about me,and along with the fear for me to volunteer to do something so public as to roam around the college campus and in and out of buildings to find posting boards where I can staple up a flyer like the one in the picture…well,it just ain’t me!
Guess what??
I am walking around the University of Florida campus with a brief case full of these flyers and a staple gun….yesterday I went through six or eight different buildings ( gladly I did not have to pee ) and was able to go from floor to floor in some of these buildings and soon it became kind of fun.
One of the things I am finding I should have done many many years ago is to stop and turn around and fight my attackers-I did not have a chance back then in barracks D,and never fought since-until now…and seeing I need to endure in this battle. So taking on this task is another form of therapy to me…I confess,yesterday as I was posting these I felt the presence of the students all around me-gawd…I must stand out like a sore thumb -this old guy in the midst of all that youth.
I rips at my heart…thinking about it. The Navy-so the education officer had said,was going to send me to college.
I wrote before about how I went to school through my sons-I lived a life that I wanted to have back as a kid….lived it through my sons-being in marching band,and I a band parent. It was glory to sense all that once again-I wanted so much to do it when I was in my high school years,those days were a wreck.
My oldest son-through all my lamentations of what happened in the Navy-joined the Navy and excelled…just for me. So much was taken from me on one side….but through my sons so much has been given back.
Well….if I keep on going about this those flyers won’t get posted ( will they?) and to me it is such a reward to be a part of something-and to be able to use it for good,good inside of me-and good for others like me.

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