The stresses and burdens of life are sometimes so heavy on me i don't even know how to cope. It's even harder when i want to help people and be there for them and no matter what i try to do, i can't help. I try my hardest to manage the ptsd, depression and stupid suicidal thoughts that plague my thoughts at least once a day. I made a promise that i would never hurt myself again, and i try my damnedest to keep my promises. But i sit here almost everyday on that precipice looking out into the void wondering and hope that the grass is greener over there. I can't search for that release i, making promises, have to wait for it to come to me. Normally i wouldn't post this kind of thing for people to see, i am a very huge introvert and i hate bothering people with my problems. But i have to get this out somehow, let it leave me for a bit and travel to i don't even care where. I guess what i'm saying is this isn't really meant for anyone but myself.
What deepens these scars, what makes me bleed again on the inside is seeing the exact same thing happening to people i served with. People who are not blood related to me but i will not hesitate one second to call them a brother or sister. I see the posts on facebook. I get their phone calls and texts. We are all battling our own demons. And it seems we are losing. The first casualty i encountered was right when i got to the fleet and i was still a fresh boot (newbie) to the Corps. When i got to my unit the guys i was with were quick to welcome me into the family with love and being the butt of newbie jokes alike. This one Corporal i quickly became friends with who also showed me the ropes was a really cool guy. We hung out and he seemed like he was happy. After a while we could tell something was bothering him but he would never talk about it. Then suddenly it was over and he was back to being his really happy self. He had wanted to hang out but i declined so i could do something else. And that has haunted me forever and forever will. The next day started off just like any other day and during lunch i went to my car to take a nap. Coming back into the shop was a surreal experience because i could see the darkness as much as i could see my own hand. The look on everyone's face, the way they were standing, or walking around you can tell something terrible happened. My friend had gone home for lunch and put a shot gun into his mouth and left this world forever. I keep thinking what if i had hung out with him the day before. Maybe i could have stopped it. I will forever hate myself for not trying and putting myself over someone else.
This is not the only time it has happened. It happened to others i knew even while they were on deployment. One buddy of mine while in Iraq just could not take it anymore and just did it right outside the chow hall tent. Why? How are we dying more to ourselves than the enemy?
After getting out of the Marines was one of the hardest things i had to do. I literally could not be around people without having a panic attack. I never had panic attacks before so i had no idea what was going on. My parents had taken me to Coney Island to get food from there and it's famous so alot of people go there to get food from Nathan's. I thought everything would be fine until i got inside and was surrounded by people. There was the first panic attack and i had no idea that was going to happen. I had to run out and put my back against a wall, put vision of everyone in my field of view and try to control my breathing. The second time i was hanging out with a friend of mine and she took my to this bar pizza place in brooklyn. Again it happened and it was so bad i said i had to use the bathroom but ran into their backroom trying to control the shaking and pushing back the urge to cry. What. The. Fuck. From that point on i couldn't go outside and be around too many people. I was pretty much stuck in a house for about 2 years trying to...relax i guess. Finally i was able to manage to attempt this school thing but it's a fight everyday. I am still surrounded by people and i can feel those uneasy feelings try to creep up. And i fight everyday to suppress it. I keep telling myself it's not a combat zone and not everyone is trying to kill me. But regardless i will sit there in the back of the room to keep an eye on everyone. I make sure i know how to get to cover points quickly to engage a target coming through the door. I guess the training never leaves you.
I am far from the exception. Another friend of mine who got out at about the same time i did does the same thing. He had been fighting his demons for more than 7 years now. He actually pulled the trigger but his gun didn't fire because last time he cleaned his gun he forgot to put the firing pin back in. But seeing him apologize to friends and family on his facebook i can see he is again nearing that point. We tried to give him encouraging words, be there for him as much as we can but i don't think its going to help this time. He deleted his page and isn't answering his calls or texts. And yet another friend is apparently in jail now because he is so lost in life he got into heroin and robbed some people. While in he had attempted as well and cut so deep into his arm he had to have surgery to reconnect all his tendons and such. They were not sure if he would have full use of his hand anymore. But again i ask, why? Why does this have to happen to us? To good people. People that would give their very own life to protect others. Why do we have to suffer this bad? Is it because we are forced to do things no average American should have to do? I guess when we say we would give up everything to protect others we literally give up everything.
What really hurts the most is that, as a whole, Americans don't care. We veterans give up everything from our own sanity to our very own life to protect us and our way of life. It seems like no one remembers history and what we had fought for, and died for, to create here. The freedom and liberties that we love and hold onto are being taken away. Little by little what our predecessors have created for us to enjoy life is being eroded. And not many notice. Or many just do not care. And it's not even like its a North vs. South or East vs. West thing. It is between the have and have nots. There is such a small percent of people that have money, control and power that want to maintain it over the millions of us that do not. I just do not understand the thought process we have as a whole to just lay down and take this. It's a foreign concept to me. I fight for what's right for everyone not the few. We all know and see the corruption everywhere but nobody does shit to stop it. So why i ask, why do i and every other veteran have to suffer all this pain and anguish? It seems to be all in vain anyway. Why waste perfectly good lives for an idea that just does not exist anymore? Why waste our lives on people that don't fucking care? I am getting to the point where i really can't take it anymore myself, it just seems pointless. I close my eyes and picture that void. Whatever is beyond is just out of my grasp, something new, something different. Something that has to be better than this fallen world. I sometimes wonder why i made that promise and in those times i hate myself for making it. What's the point in staying here anyway? Maybe one day the last wrong act ill do is to break a promise, maybe then i will be free.