SPOILER ALERT: Don't read unless you have read a few chapters of The Summer Garden.
I just posted this response to one of Clay's comments and wanted to share. For some reason I sometimes express what I'm feeling much better when I'm replying to someone's comments. (I can read Clay's comments because I know he's reading The Summer Garden right now and hasn't read any further than I have!)
"I keep beating myself up for getting mad at Alexander. I almost feel like it would be an easier pill to swallow if he were in a robe and comfy PJs in a veterans hospital somewhere, rocking back and forth and staring at his spoon. But his sheer meanness is just incredibly hard on the soul. And kudos to Paullina because I would stake my life on the fact that this is exactly how many traumatized men act when they return from war."
This is such a good observation. I know a few vets who have returned from recent wars, and they have had so much trouble readapting to life here (and they weren't even in "real" combat situations!) When Alexander mentioned that maybe he should stay in the hospital with the Colonel, I thought that Tatiana was wrong to tell him no. But as you've mentioned before, Carol, the term PTSD wasn't around back then... :-(ReplyDelete
So true. The other point is that most vets return to a home where their loved ones are so removed from the war. Alexander's point about Tatiana knowing every detail of what he went through - my god, of seeing him in that cell - is so true- every time he says she's tainted with the gulag I want to cry :-9ReplyDelete