So. I seem to have misplaced all my old posts. No idea what I may have done but they’re definitely gone. Good thing I remember everything word for word right? I wish…
Oh well, lately, I’ve found myself in a bad place mentally and I really have no idea why. An old Army friend committed suicide on Memorial Day which definitely sucked but things haven’t really been all that bad since then. Been trying to make a claim at the VA which let me tell you, is TONS of fun…I can’t remember ever having to see this many doctors in this short amount of time on my life. Two different audiologists, two different psychiatrists, a rheumatologist, a pain specialist, my family doctor, a VA doctor and a few assorted others here and there and I am DAMN tired of driving around to get to all these appointments.
Unfortunately, it’s all on me. I really should have at least started the process about twenty years ago but instead, I just kept everything bottled up inside rather than attempt to work things out. After all, it isn’t as though I lost a leg or anything while I was in Desert Storm. Sure, driving through active mine fields with truck loads of prisoners while completely lost wasn’t fun but then again, I never expected a war zone to be fun. Seeing bodies and pieces of bodies where cluster bombs hit wasn’t fun either. I think one of the worst things was when we (and by “we”, I mean the Battalion of which I was part) were processing prisoners at a small site - sort of a clearing zone I guess, not really sure what to call it as I was a heavily armed generator mechanic in an MP unit. The fact that we had a shitload of medics there in ambulances was a damn good thing as some of those poor bastards hadn’t had any food or water in a long enough time that some of them literally just dropped dead. Every single ambulance was full of prisoners hooked up to IV’s and I can’t say enough about the medics who worked their asses off to treat them.
A lot of stuff you just don’t talk about after the fact - especially you never EVER mention names - like seeing prisoners get shot because they refused to follow a reasonable order like “drop your weapon”. True, I DID expect something like that before I ever left Germany I just never thought it through - I may see it, hell I may have been involved in it but at that age, I never thought about how it might affect me mentally later in life. I guess that’s probably true of any veteran who ever served time in a war zone. When things happen, you just roll with it and then try and forget all about it. I can tell you for a fact that forgetting some of those things just doesn’t happen.
I can’t close my eyes any more without seeing those goddamn mines we drove through - all because the SSG in charge didn’t know what the hell he was doing. If we hadn’t come across a squad of MP’s that were manning an outpost, I don’t know what we would have done because we really had no clue. I was pretty pissed when I got back to Germany and found out that the bastard who got us lost and had us driving through mine fields got promoted to SFC. I got over it but at the time, since I was never any good at the “kiss the ass of the brass game in order to get promoted”, I was, I believe, the senior E-4 in Germany that was promotable yet hadn’t actually been scheduled to go to PLDC (again, see not an MP in an MP unit) and it stayed that way until I just told the Sergeant Major to take my name off the list. It was pretty obvious that they had no intention of sending me so why deny the opportunity to someone else?
These days, I feel like I accomplished something when I actually get out of bed and go outside. Most of the time, I don’t leave the house and there are days on end that I never even leave the end of the house that contains my bed, my computer room and, of course, the bathroom. It’s one way to lose fifty pounds in a few months that’s for damn sure. Not the healthiest way but I DID lose the weight. Gotta admit that I’ve also cut WAY back on my drinking which is good. What would be better is if I didn’t have to take huge amounts of narcotics every day to alleviate the pain of peripheral neuropathy and three back surgeries. At least I got off the morphine and now just take methadone three times a day. Too bad methadone is HORRIBLE for your heart but my doctor refuses to give me anything different so what am I gonna do?
I know it seems like I’m just whining away here and oh whoa is me and whatnot, but I really have a lot to be thankful for. I have a wonderful wife and a great grandson both of whom I love more than I could ever express as well as a couple of great daughters who, despite our occasional extreme differences, I love also, not to mention a really great granddaughter so all around, I’m doing much better than a lot of other people out there.
Just had to write this down somewhere and figured what the hell, here was as good as anyplace else.