DALLAS, June 1, 2016 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- For Lisa Crowder, it was a moment of triumph just to be in the room. The Army veteran struggles with anxiety to the point she doesn't leave her home. The draw for the other warriors in attendance and her daughters was next door, as Dallas Cowboys' superstar Jason Witten met with the group -- but Lisa at least made it out of the house.
"I'm agoraphobic," Lisa explains with the clinical term for serious anxiety. "I don't like to go out of the house. I don't like to be around people."
Lisa doesn't even like to go to the grocery store and has limited those experiences.
"Usually, I take my 14-year-old daughter with me, and she goes inside to get what we need."
Lisa proudly answered the call to join the military in 1995 and served 25 years in the United States Army. Now, Lisa struggles with socializing and transitioning to civilian life and worries her daughters are paying for her limitations.
"My daughters missed out on a lot – school stuff and other activities."
"It is incredibly painful to watch what my mom has gone through," Kylie Crowder, Lisa's 23-year-old daughter said. "She is so strong and independent, but to see that taken from her since she returned from Afghanistan is rough. She has tried several inpatient programs, but none have helped."
More than a year ago, Lisa registered with Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) at the urging of her Warrior Transition Unit (WTU) – the military established the units to help service members who need at least six months of care because of injury or illness – but Lisa's anxiety kept her from taking part in any WWP events or programs.
Things changed for Lisa when she decided to open a weekly email she received from WWP. Those emails include a list of events coming up in the warrior's area along with details and a link to sign-up to attend.
"I don't usually open the emails," Lisa said. "It was the first time I looked through the opportunities. My daughter loves the Cowboys, so I was thrilled we were picked to go."
Lisa has registered for events before, but she would never show up.
WWP teamed up with ProTalk to bring warriors and their families together with Jason Witten. WWP sees the importance of fun, social events to encourage wounded veterans to get out of the house. This allows injured service members who are struggling with their transition to civilian life a chance to realize they are not alone in their recovery. WWP gets wounded veterans out of their home, spending time with other warriors. These opportunities also lead to warriors learning about other WWP programs and services that can help in their recovery.
"It was a great day for us," Lisa said. "We got a chance to meet other warriors and their families."
"I thought she was going to wait in the parking lot," Kylie said. "For her to come inside and meet other people is a huge deal."
Now Lisa is looking at life with newfound confidence.
"Every step I take helps a lot. I know now I can be around other people. Now I want to learn more about what WWP has to offer so I can move forward in my recovery and get my life back."
WWP helps warriors at no cost. Learn more at https://www.woundedwarriorproject.org/programs.
About Wounded Warrior Project
The mission of Wounded Warrior Project® (WWP) is to honor and empower Wounded Warriors. WWP's purpose is to raise awareness and to enlist the public's aid for the needs of injured service members, to help injured servicemen and women aid and assist each other, and to provide unique, direct programs and services to meet their needs. WWP is a national, nonpartisan organization headquartered in Jacksonville, Florida.
SOURCE Wounded Warrior Project