So this is something that I have struggled with, and continue to struggle with. I'd like to tell you a story, if I may....
An 18 year old boy growing up in Indiana is getting ready to graduate in 2005. He is, according to his teachers, very perplexing due to his intelligence but lack of drive or initiative when it comes to education. He reads frequently, he enjoys drawing and sketching, and he loves being outdoors.
This young man doesn't want to just graduate and go to work in the small town he lives in. He has a couple of friends who are joining the Marines. He joins with them, and ships to Parris Island two months after getting his diploma.
He then goes through training, graduating as an artilleryman, gets to the fleet and does his job. Over the course of the next decade, he deploys five times.
Three time he goes to combat. He patrols, searches vehicles and people. He talks to village elders and tries to engage the community to make it a safer place. He hears about people he knows and people he doesn't getting hurt, or worse getting killed.
He stuffs his emotions down and focuses on the job at hand. He doesn't think about his own mortality, only focuses on keeping his brothers and sisters next to him safe.
He comes home and feels lost. He suffers bouts of depression, fits of anger, and loses a marriage. He thinks about suicide daily and thinks of his family to keep himself from doing anything. He doesn't think about his own life, because to himself, his life is worthless.
This story could be told about a thousand people, but this time it is about me. I struggle with these thoughts and questions of why I came home and others didn't. Not a day has gone by in the past 10 years when I don't think of suicide at least once.
This phrase, "I am not my thoughts; I am what I do." This helps me...
I am a fighter.
I am a learner.
I am a provider.
I am a success.
#unfuckyourself #getoutofyourhead #andintoyourlife #garyjohnbishop #veterans #veteran #marinevet #marines #semperfi #semperfidelis #iamnotmythoughts #iamwhatido