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Jan. 6th, 2011


Part One

Alison ran her finger along the rim of her wineglass, staring down into the swirling pink liquid. Its transient beauty as it ebbed and flowed calmed her, smoothed some of the rough edges she was feeling. She was aware of Robb's blue eyes tracking her every movement, and got that unsettled feeling in her stomach again. Lord have mercy. She brought her green gaze up to meet his.

"The journey south from Iraq to Kuwait was the hardest," she admitted softly, a lock of ebony hair falling forward as she spoke. "Knowing that at any moment a bomb could go off and rip any one of us from our tenuous existence...it was very nerve-wracking."

Robb could only nod his head, then take a long, thoughtful pull from his bottle of beer. Finally, he reached across the round expanse of table to where Alison's hand lay, and grasped her long, slender fingers.

"You're a hero," he assured her in a low, soothing voice. "No matter what happened after that last convoy, you're still a hero for saving that soldier's life."

Alison sighed, a deep, weighty sound that made his heart ache. He knew she was remembering the sounds of soldiers shouting orders, the pleas for help, of incoming rounds pinging off the armor of the trucks. The smell of carbon and dust, blood, sweat and tears, all mixing together in an aroma that could overwhelm even the most stalwart veteran. The feel of a soldier's blood on her hands as she worked on him, desparate to save not only his leg but his life. Seeing tracer rounds blaze a bright trail over her head, the worm of panic that tried to crawl into her gut and was ruthlessly squashed under hours, months of training and experience. She'd worked quickly but efficiently, applying a granular clotting formula to the open wound, stabilizing the patient, and ultimately holding his hand the entire flight to the hospital, once the birds had arrived.

"He was so young," Alison recalled quietly. "A child, really, no more than 18 years old. He should have been in college, attending parties and studying for class. Instead, his life ended up in my hands."

"And you took care of it. You saved it, gave it back to him," Robb reminded her. She nodded. Gently, he squeezed her hand, then got the surprise of his life when she turned it to lace her fingers with his. Black lashes swept low to lay on the smooth skin of her cheeks as she closed her eyes. A single tear slipped down to leave a shimmering trail down her face. "Hey." With his free hand he reached out, brushed the tear away with the pad of his thumb. Alison turned her face into his hand, savoring the touch of a man for the first time since that helicopter ride. What had changed inside of her that night, she didn't know, but it had made her shy away from any physical and, eventually, emotional, connection since. Until Robb had knocked on the door to the stone manor she shared with her brother.

Dec. 28th, 2010


A self-exploration

 No doubt everybody in this online community has long forgotten my existence, if they ever knew about it at all.  A lot has happened in the last couple of years, including having my heart broken several times.  The most recent comes just the day after Christmas, a difficult enough time indeed, made even harder by the passing of something I thought was special.  And that's the catalyst for this journal entry.  I know the therapist I spoke to this morning said I should do this privately, but I think the objective audience of strangers I consistently find in online communities provides just the right recipients for these thoughts.  She said she wants me to write down the things I want in a partner (insert your own word here), and that maybe such an exercise would help sort out my feelings.  So...I've come to realize I have no need for big, romantic gestures or things of that nature.  Flowers?  Nice to receive, but they don't last long.  Jewelry?  Pretty, but I can buy my own and usually prefer to.  Take me to dinner?  Sure, but most of the time I'd rather stay home and eat.  But...you fixed my car?  Fabulous.  You communicated with me instead of running away from a problem?  Awesome.  You have integrity, honor, moral standards, and you accept me for the way I am?  My heart falls at your feet.  The deal is I'm me and I don't require anybody's approval, nor do I want someone who is going to do nothing but try and change me into who they think I'm supposed to be.  When I love it's completely, and I would never expect someone to change themselves for me in a way that means they're not the person I fell in love with.  I want someone I'm with to tell me I'm beautiful, to want to see me smile and hear me laugh, to do dozens of little things for me and never do anything to make me question their feelings for me.  I need someone loyal, faithful, who doesn't care about being perfect but just tries to be the best person they can.  I don't care if they're rough around the edges...God knows those polished up suit types are just a pain in ass sometimes.  I don't care about money, or material wealth, or any of that crap.  I require intelligent conversation, someone with their own opinions who isn't afraid to stand up for what they believe in and doesn't mind debating things sometimes.  Someone who knows how to stand up for themselves when people try to push them around.  Life's not fair and relationships are never perfect, and the last thing I need is someone who runs away at the first sign things aren't.  You need to communicate with me, let me know what you're feeling and thinking and want.  There are few people who are good at that, and being the person I am I understand that.  All I ask if for people to try, because I respect you so much more when you do.  I would never ask of somebody anything I'm not willing to do or sacrifice myself, and expect the same in return.  I crave physical affection, emotional support, and the understanding that yes, I'm in therapy, and I need you to back me up 100 percent in that.  I have goals, ambitions, things I want to accomplish and be and do in my life, and nobody is allowed to try to smother that or take it away from me.  I want someone who makes me laugh, who can take a joke, that I can't wait to get home to at the end of the day and that I want to wake up next to every morning.  I need a friend, because whenever the passion and fire is gone, whether it takes two months or 20 years, all that's left is genuinely liking the person you're with.  And now that I've rambled the post away, I do feel considerably better.  It's not organized in any way, shape, or form, but it helps to at least get it all out of my brain and written in a permanent way that I can refer back to in the future.  Tomorrow or the next day I'll be along to push and shove these thoughts into some semblance of order.  For now, if you've made it this far into the post, thanks for hanging in there.  Feel free to leave comments, whether it be thoughts, advice, criticism, etc.  If I lost you at the beginning of the post, oh well.

Jun. 6th, 2008


An Observation

This is my second post of the day, and really the first public post I'll make since I started this thing back in '05, right before I went to Afghanistan. As I was perusing recent public posts, I noticed that people have a lot of worries these days. That's fine, 'cause Lord knows there's a lot to worry about in today's world. The interesting part to me was how my priorities and worries have shifted so dramatically in the past four years...or, more accurately, since I joined the US Army. Do I worry about gas prices? Yeah, 'cause even though I'm in Iraq right now, here soon I will be returning to the States, and however fuel efficient my little car is (and it is) I will still feel it. But a more pressing concern, right here, right now, is the health of the guys who had an IED explode near their truck today. Sure, I'm concerned about the economy and finding a job, since I'm out of the Army in a year and I'll have to work somewhere. However, for an hour and a half everything else took a backseat so I could clean my rifle. If my teammate knocked on the door right now and said he needed to talk, then on would go the sneakers, tuck the shirt in, put my reflective belt on, and he could talk my ear off all night if he had to. I'm 10 days away from my 22nd birthday and I'm 11 months into my second deployment, and I've seen, experienced, felt, heard, tasted, touched, DONE more things than most of the people I graduated high school with four years ago. In fact, four of those peeps that I loved dearly were taken from me by this damn country, and our president's outrageous concept that we have to fix everybody's damn problems. It is by turns amusing, frustrating, and downright shocking to hear what people complain about in my hometown these days...people in their senior year of high school, hell, some of the very peeps I graduated with. And all I can think is "Did I really used to be like this?" and "I will never take things for granted again." Such is the train of thought that embeds itself into your very being when your best friend is killed by a roadside bomb less than three months into her Iraq tour, and three months before her 19th birthday. But I digress...those that haven't had to live through these things, be thankful, and don't complain about what you don't have or the life you lead or whatever. Fix it, improve it, change it, do what you need to, but please don't complain to me. I'm too cynical and jaded to give a damn about normal people's worries anymore. And that's just fine with me.

Aug. 19th, 2006


jumpmaster dance

jumpmaster dance
"jumpmaster dance" on Google Video

Jun. 6th, 2005


(no subject)

Country and Western Dance Night was a blast last night! I was afraid to dance at first because my ankle had been hurting. It did hurt for a while after I danced to "Cotton-Eyed Joe" but the more I danced, the better it felt. When I came back to my room I packed it with ice packs and put on a movie, figuring I'd stay up a few more hours, that way I could sleep in as late as possible for mids tonight. No such luck. I fell asleep about 2000 and woke up an hour and a half later needing a trip to the latrine in the worst sort of way. So off to the bathroom I went, then I came back, got into bed, and went right back to sleep. I woke up this morning about 0600ish wanting to go back to sleep but totally unable to. Damn. Got up, made another trip to the latrine-I drink a lot of water-came to MWR. Talked to Mom, she's doing great and says hi to everybody. Had some lunch chow, went to the PX, then came back to my hut and changed into DCUs. And theeeeeennnnn........I went to see the wonderful Task Force Eagle S-6, also known as my dance partner, SPC Mullins. Spent about an hour catching up with him, then hiked up to DQ, which is about a click up from where I live. (For you non-Army types, a "click" is 1000 meters) Okay, here's were it gets a little nuts. So this whole company of Marines-or whatever a unit of Marines is called...in the Army, the term is "company"-was moving into some of the tents over there. They were staring at me. And DAMN some of them were hot!!! I found out later that they're an infantry unit, so they have absolutely NO females. Explains a lot, doesn't it? Then I went to work. Saw some interesting stuff. Almost got to light some shit up, that would have been THE highlight of this deployment. But I didn't. Damn. I also figured out that I can't tell anybody anything, because my team leader always finds out...he must be psychic or something, so I'm just going to keep everything to myself. SGT Bledsoe, the supply sergeant, doesn't like it when I do that, but hey, what's a body to do? SGT Bledsoe really looks out for me, ever notice that? I think he takes better care of me than my actual NCO, which is kinda sad when you think about it. Really sad, actually. Wow, I'm pretty fucking tired. Almost bedtime. Gotta call a few peeps, then it's off to bed with me. Need my rest. Good night everybody.

January 2011



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