Recovering Soldier doesn't miss a beat
By MaryTherese Griffin, US Army Warrior Care and Transition

ARLINGTON, Va. - U.S. Army Spc. Savannah Christensen's original plan was to join the Coast Guard, but that did not happen the way she had hoped. However, Christensen knew she wanted to serve her country, so she joined the Army in October 2017.

"I'm a firm believer that everything happens for a reason," she said. Her time in the Army was short lived as she is going through the medical board process after undergoing therapy at the Warrior Transition Battalion at Fort Drum, New York.

Christensen is open and candid about struggling with post-traumatic stress disorder, anxiety and depression. "I feel like I am leaving the Army a better person. My social workers, counselors and nurse case manager have been awesome for my recovery," says the Information Technology Specialist. They also encouraged her to embrace her passion of music as part of her recovery so she did.

Christensen writes, sings and is self-taught on multiple instruments. She says her family is stunned. "They are quite impressed, in fact they are shocked. They had no idea I could do any of that."

The Army definitely taught Christensen how to have thick skin. "The WTB has shown me many things. I appreciate learning about resiliency and the not taking no for an answer lessons - I needed that," explained the artist in the making.

Harbored triggers from childhood that haunted her, coupled with current day anxiety and depression issues is the daily journey to her new normal. "I had a lot of therapy which I enjoyed. They helped me identify emotions and that is what helped me with my song writing."

Christensen is working on an album that includes her struggles. "I'm looking forward to sharing my journey through my music and helping others overcome their mental health issues through my songs," she says, while also encouraging others to get help if they need it and not to wait.

Although she spent a short time in the Army, Christensen is very happy she joined. "I think if I hadn't joined the Army and got help and went through the things I went through, I don't think I would be where I am today and be able to cope with things I am able to now."