It was summer and the heat felt like 100 degrees. Who was I kidding? it was summer every day in the Middle East. I was 22 years old. Fearless, aggressive, well trained, one of the few and the …well you get the idea. I found some of my old journals I kept. Even during the worst times over there, I kept a journal. I always wrote. One line that struck me hard and made me laugh was when I said that someday I will be 30, if I make it out of here alive. I listed all the things I thought I would be at that milestone age. I believe famous was in there, and rich. I had no idea how I would accomplish those things, but I put stock in them nonetheless. I also thought perhaps I would be a career military man. Thirty came. I was at a corporation that went under due to a stock scandal. Global company. I had nothing to do with any of that, but I found myself unemployed at 30. I also had my first dance with anxiety and a clinical nervous breakdown which included a 6 month stint with agoraphobia. Nothing went to plan to say the least. I was also in a marriage I was not happy in, to add insult to injury.
35 came and life was much better. Gone was the horrific marriage, and I had been dating the woman who would become my wife and love of my life. The anxiety was there but not as much. I danced with the devil my whole life. Don’t run away yet dearest reader, there is no part in here where I tell you I quit dancing with the devil and have become some sort of saved soul. Being that I flatlined twice, I know better. I learned that life was not what happens when you are busy making plans (as John Lennon said, by the way I loathe the Beatles almost as much as Green Day…21 guns anti war song hippies..I would love that band to be in the combat zones where I was for a week. Or 2 days in the make-shift Iraqi prison, that was a whole lot of fun), Life is what happens in the times that I am not having sex. Yep, I figured that out finally. I am lucky in that aspect (no this is not the part where I tell you I banged a bunch of different girls all the time…I did do that before I married my wife that I am married to now), what I learned is that for a relationship and marriage to work and last (and you should NOT have to work at it) you have to truly be in to who you are with, not only on the love level, but the sexual level as well. We have been together almost seven years and NOTHING in either of those areas have changed.All my friends are out looking at other women, their wives get happy if the husband goes to s strip club or watches porn because then the husbands really get turned on….SERIOUSLY? lol. Funny but I have heard it said from different woman. It’s the classic case of guy lets him self go and so do the woman…and boom you have middle of the road sex, life and relationship. I just turned 40. My wife just turned 26. I do not look 40 because I take care of myself and never will I be the guy who lets himself go. Now when I’m 80 and she has long put me in a home where I don’t know my name and when her new husband and her come to visit me and I think they are both my kids as the dementia has kicked full throttle…I say screw it. I lived at least.
On my deathbed I will have memories of anxiety and panic and some depression…..but I will always have the memories of the middle east, being a warrior….a real one…not a weekend reserve troop, not the guy who never joined so he wears camo, plays call of duty on the xbox and hunts deers who cant shoot back. I can look back and say I was the real deal, but then I will also remember that I became the man afraid, the anxiety driven panic having Xanax taking man I am now. I look in the mirror and I love what I see, but I don’t like who I have become…does that make sense?
I remember a friend my father had. For some reason after all the mills closed he wanted to go on disability this guy, instead of working he wanted disability. He went to all the Dr appts (that is going back years, so I don’t know the meds) and they kept given him different meds for his insanity. He had no insanity but after a while, he became a zombie like being from all the meds…dazed all the time. I was thinking as I was driving home a few moments ago feeling like shit, perhaps that is the way to do it, live without feeling all this…kind of like dementia but not….wait I take that back. My grandmother had it and she used to cry and shake with the dementia and Alzheimer’s. They told us all she didn’t know anything anymore. She wouldn’t even talk, they had to feed her. But, when I would visit and sing her favorite song to her “someday when im awfully low, and the world is cold, I will feel a glow just thinking of you, and the way you look tonight” she would squeeze man hand and smile and try to talk. She knew the fred Astaire version so I sang it slower than Sinatra did it. Perhaps I would know what I was feeling in that state.
So what do I do now? Where do I go from here? I should have become an alcoholic lol. I asked a Marine who was recon like me but he was in WWII. I asked him if he ever had anxiety, he laughed and explained they just drank themselves into sleep. I had to laugh. I give those guys all the respect. They did it with a canteen, a gun and a pack of smokes. They had no equipment like we had. Imagine all those airborne guys….jumping out as the Nazi guns from below just fired up and hit them like a damn carnival game. The Marines that stormed the beaches (on a side not…being I am 40, what ever happened to beechnut chewing gum or hubba bubba gum?) the boat dropped and they ran into fire knowing that shit is not in their favor. I met an army vet at a family gathering last night. He was in combat in Korea. And we are talking and he said I always felt bad for you Marines in Viet Nam LOL. I didn’t realize he was at the starts of dementia. I don’t even look 40 and he thought I was in NAM. The funny thing is that he remembered everything from the war but nothing from 3 days ago. It saddens me.
It saddens me that there is war. We all get along in Disneyland waiting in line for the rides. I have lost track about what this post was even about and I guess I just needed to type. Dear Readers, forgive my vacancy of having a map, or at least a planned agenda for this, but sometimes I am as random as the guy who decides he can walk thru the arbys drive thru. I just found out Kmart was owned by Sears. WOW. I don’t shop at either (for anything clothing related) I am about as metrosexual as it gets. I only buy clothing at certain places. For jeans its diesel, 7 for manking, gap, express for men, and American Eagle…that is just me. I think Polo, Nautica and all the like suck it! Well I guess that it all for me. What should I title this post? Who knows.