In Sickness and Health

May 1, 2014 at 9:23 am 24 comments

For Friday Fictioneers 100-Word Challenge 2 May 2014

Renee Heath
Photo Credit: Renee Heath

When her husband came back from Afghanistan, he was a shell of his former self. Matthew became a paraplegic and was suffering from post-traumatic stress.

A devoted wife, Ashley burned the candle at both ends taking care of him. In return, Matthew was mostly unappreciative and prone to bouts of uncontrollable rage.

The psychiatrist was right. Without taking antidepressant medication, Ashley wouldn’t be able to cope.

A year later, Matthew died peacefully while asleep. He was buried at Arlington with full military honors. As the American flag that draped his coffin was handed to her, Ashley couldn’t be more proud.

* * *


A Tribute to Our Fallen Soldiers

Entry filed under: Blogroll, friday fictioneers. Tags: , , .

wordless wednesday: guess who came to dinner weekly photo challenge: spring

24 Comments Add your own

  • 1. Björn Rudberg (brudberg)  |  May 1, 2014 at 11:18 am

    Such tragedies.. so many survivivng victims .. a tragedy it’s so hard to take proper care of the returning ones.

    • 2. plaridel  |  May 1, 2014 at 7:24 pm


      war is hell to the combatants as well as to their families.

  • 3. draliman  |  May 1, 2014 at 11:51 am

    A scene all too common I fear, as returning soldiers struggle to cope in civilian life.

    • 4. plaridel  |  May 1, 2014 at 7:25 pm


      sadly, it’s true.

  • 5. Liz Young  |  May 1, 2014 at 2:44 pm

    And yet the US still gets involved in other countries’ wars.

    • 6. plaridel  |  May 1, 2014 at 7:25 pm


      i think the main reasoning is to prevent conflict from getting to the u.s. shores.

  • 7. elmowrites  |  May 1, 2014 at 2:52 pm

    A heart-wrenching story, I like how you showed both their sufferings. I’d have liked a little more emotion in the writing, is the only thing.

    • 8. plaridel  |  May 1, 2014 at 7:26 pm


      i hear you. but it was quite a challenge considering the 100-word limit. 🙂

  • 9. gentlestitches  |  May 1, 2014 at 6:11 pm

    very emotional. This piece of writing conjures up many thoughts. Most prevalent is “why do people keep warring?” and “will we ever learn?”

    • 10. plaridel  |  May 1, 2014 at 7:26 pm


      to answer your questions, it’s all about greed.

  • 11. patriciaruthsusan  |  May 2, 2014 at 4:28 am

    Plaridel, A very lovely, touching, and well-written story. One sight that will always be with me was when I belonged to a choral choir in a girl’s high school in the U.S. and we went to sing at a veteran’s hospital near Christmas time. When our young voices drifted down the halls, more and more wounded soldiers came to the lobby to see and hear us. Some were on crutches and in wheelchairs.


    • 12. plaridel  |  May 2, 2014 at 3:12 pm


      it was tough to die in battle… it was tougher still to survive with a handicap. veterans and their families need all the support of a grateful nation.

  • 14. Sandra  |  May 2, 2014 at 5:38 am

    It sounds as though she remembered the good times though. Nicely done

    • 15. plaridel  |  May 2, 2014 at 3:12 pm


      i took your advice and abandon my penchant for small letters. at least, for friday fictioneers… 🙂

  • 16. sustainabilitea  |  May 2, 2014 at 1:16 pm

    Nice use of the candle in your story. This story probably plays out all too often, at least the part about the difficulties of dealing with the aftermath of war and with coping with those dealing with it. I think you need a word here: “peacefully in sleep”, probably “his” or, if the word word count would suffer, you could say “peacefully while sleeping.”


    • 17. plaridel  |  May 2, 2014 at 3:13 pm


      i initially wrote “peace in his sleep” but had to remove the “his” mindful of the 100-word limit. i never thought of “peacefully while sleeping.” thanks for the suggestion. it worked beautifully.

  • 19. aliciajamtaas  |  May 2, 2014 at 5:46 pm

    Nicely written tale of two lives wrapped around on horrific event. Thank you.

    • 20. plaridel  |  May 3, 2014 at 11:25 am


      thank you for reading. i’m glad you like it.

  • 21. dmmacilroy  |  May 3, 2014 at 6:33 am

    Dear Plaridel,

    A capital improvement.



    • 22. plaridel  |  May 3, 2014 at 11:34 am


      that’s a good one. 🙂

  • 23. rochellewisoff  |  May 3, 2014 at 6:34 am

    Dear Plaridel,

    Your use of capital letters made this an easier read. Thank you. Touching and true to life.



    • 24. plaridel  |  May 3, 2014 at 11:39 am


      the forgotten capital letters will be on my Friday fictioneers posts from now on. 🙂


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