It has been a while since I have written. However this is merited. To find the world you must first find yourself. For no one can take a journey without a lantern to light the way. You see; all to often we get caught up in this t.v. series called life; and before we are even aware the miracle called life has happened.
For some of us it begins with the birth of our first child. For others with an event which altars your entire existence. This too holds true when it concerned ending another chapter and the beginning of a new uncharted, but vaguely familiar path. This path way exists only on the horizon of tommorrow. However, it is interesting to note that glimmers of the well defined borders of the future can be glimpsed in our dreams the events of today.
So yet another chapter has begun in my life. With only a few days (perhaps about 10) left, I now look toward the end of my career in the United States Navy. A fine Organization by all accounts. Her ranks are filled with the promise of tomorrow, and willing hearts of untold men and women. It is within this place, idea, and organization called the Navy that I have found much meaning in life.
While I never imagined this day arriving. I'm still Never the less amazed that it is here. This has been one of the biggest Adventures I have ever been on. I'm glad I decided to serve in the Navy. I learned a lot about who I am and what I am capable of. In many ways the navy forged me into something else. Not sure what, but, whatever it is I'm darn happy with it. As a sailor I learned how to take orders and get the job done no matter what, As a Corpsman in the United States Marine Corps Fleet Marine Force I learned the value of and how precious human life really truly is. I brought life into this world and sadly enough watched life leave as well. I also learned how to dodge bullets and rockets from angry terrorists( lol ). Don't recommend that Pt program as it tends to get you killed or hurt. Lol
All in all, I have a lot of things to say about the Navy. I'm going to miss it. I'll miss wearing the uniform and serving this country. You know it made me feel really good to know I was protecting my country and making a visible difference at the same time. Like I really was giving back and earning the right to truly call myself a patriot. Worth every second and every minute of the last almost five years.
Much to laugh about, and many memories worth shedding a lot of tears over. Friends gained, and those buried in the line of duty to a greatful nation. Some memories I will take to the grave and others I can't forget as they plague my dreams and haunt the days. Lots of memories. But one sticks out over every other one. The first time I ever saluted the National ensign.
Like the many in my family before me, during the past 230 some odd years of this country, the defense of freedom and all it stands for became my only goal. I have shed tears, sweat, and blood to defend the flag of my country. That alone was worth it. I can say that she did not fall, nor did I fail her during my watch.
On that same note the one memory I can't erase is the first time I saluted the Ensign for a fellow Marine and Corpsman no longer alive and able to do so for themselves. There are no words to describe how that feels. It was on that day that something inside of me broke forever. Now when I salute my nations flag my vision dims and I see the faces of those men who gave their lives to ensure my safe passage back to American soil. Such is the debt of blood and willing sacrifice that I can not and may never repay save with scalding tears and eternal gratitude on a level those who have never served will never and can never know.
Another such memory is the flag that was just given to me on behalf of my nation in return for my service. There is nothing else of equal value; nor will there ever be. And it is on this note which I end this letter. My service may be coming to an end; but that changes nothing of my commitment to this nation and her people.
Many of you have wondered why I have been absent. This is why. For me the end of my service is as hard a blow as when I was diagnosed with HIV. This is not easy, however I would like to thank those of you who supported me thru this. You know who you are.