Musing no. 23: Memories of Hooah.

A year ago today I got back from Fort Sill. It’s probably the most ridiculous thing, being sad about coming “home.” Training was my home. That’s where I felt most powerful, most respected, most apt. Hell, even for being one of the tiniest in the battery, I know I was one of the best. I knew all my stuff, trained at night, ate all the food I needed to sustain the strength, tried to get the sleep I needed. I was usually up first to do my hair before everyone. I helped those I can–strugglers, slower ones, the ones that cried at night after being yelled at during the day. I quietly agreed, even if untrue, when my Drill Sergeants told me I did wrong even if I wasn’t–like when I was accused of smiling at a male even though I was freaking squinting because of the sun, yeah we got crap for that. But I did my best. I wanted to be one of the best. I pushed myself to be the best. I did extra work. Hell I carried others’ heavy rucksacks more than the males did, because no one wanted to touch the females’ things–not even their rifles (when they were at sick call etc., we had to bring their crap anyway). And later on, that would take a toll on me. I got injured, because I kept going and didn’t know when to quit. I got hurt in training, but that made them want to get rid of me, because I was not built for it. After 8 weeks of training and being one of the top scorers for females, they wanted me out.
But what was the most challenging when I was away was fighting for my right to stay. I wanted to stay. I wanted to heal up, keep training, do my part, come back to NYC and be one of the first female medics in my unit–a National Guard infantry unit, the “Fighting 69th.” That didn’t work out now, did it? How can you defend ourself when the person prosecuting you works with the people who are supposed to defend you. You lose. 
So they send me back. And here I am, with fractured L5 facet joints, and a stress fracture on my right sacrum. Fun. And everyday I live with that pain. Sometimes I have to take pain medication all day because of it. Sometimes I lose my appetite because of it. Sometimes I’d rather stay in my room and sleep because of it. I can’t go running the way I used to before I enlisted. I can’t stand one way for more than 5 minutes. I ache like someone hit my back with a 2×2 if I went and took a nice long walk. I sleep for 6 hours, but I wake up every 2, because I have to keep moving my body and it hurts. There have been instances that I would be in so much pain, I’d lose my breath. But that doesn’t matter at this point. I’m just tired of the pain, and I have been doing everything I can afford to help ease it–acupuncture, therapy, cortisone shots etc..
Don’t take your bodies for granted. Go work out. Go run. Hell, go walk in the park. What I’d do to be able to do that without pain! 
Also, to those who keep telling me I’m not a veteran, I know. Good job, you did your part for your country telling us that. Nobody ever said I was one. Chill yo butt. Ain’t nobody got time for you. Go suck a duck. 
To my friends and family who have been nothing but supportive and loving, I appreciate you. Please keep doing what you do for me to others. You guys are sunshine and everybody needs a little ray. Being here in my–yes MY country, coz I earned tf out of that citizenship–country without any close family in proximity– shoutout to my Seattle Family–with y’all support helps a lot, even if we all have our own things going on. 
Okay that was a really long rant, and I doubt anyone would read a long long post. But anyway. Go enjoy this day. It’s beautiful. It’s heartbreakingly beautiful. Heartbreaking because this was the day I felt so defeated last year. 
But I’m coming back. 

Musing no. 18: I’m an introvert.

I talk a lot. In fact, I talk so much you think I was a confident, outgoing individual that enjoys speaking to people about everything and loving it when people give me attention when I speak.

I don’t.

I cringe when people look at me when I start speaking. I act. I’m a great actress, in fact, I can make you feel like I’m really excited about what I’m talking about; whereas I’m actually nervous and scared you’d not want to listen to me.

I love listening to you, though. I love when you answer my questions with more than just one sentence, with the essence of your being slightly shared as you engage in conversation with me. That, I love. 

But I was not always like this.

I used to be the one who raised her hand when the teacher asked questions.

I used to be the one who volunteered to make friends with new people at church so they felt at home– those my age and behind.

I used to love being the center of attention and being in the spotlight. 
But then we moved; we moved to a country where I knew no one, kept myself isolated, and my comfort was writing a poem/prayer/letter every night for two and a half years straight. I listened to the saddest music, and the angriest music; I wrote in my blood, and pierced myself. It comforted me. 

I comforted me.

  Nothing anyone did for me mattered because no one did anything for me that mattered.

  FIghting everything by myself was no easy task, because no one listened to me when I asked for help.

Justifying abuse done to myself was not ideal to deal with, by myself. 

Trust me, I know. I’ve been there. 
Listen to your child when they speak of something that bothers them. Otherwise, they’ll just try to fix themselves to no fixable point, and confuse your effort to gloss over it with no care.

I talk a lot. In fact, you probably thought I was okay talking about this.

I’d rather write it out.