Thursday, March 15, 2007

Reflection and Closure...

Its nearly a year now since we got back from Iraq and life is back to normal, my life is the manic scene of chaos it was when I left it for 10 months… it didn’t take long to get back to normal, as soon as I got home I was having to get arrangements sorted for our adventures in Ibiza sorting the finer details of putting on a couple of events at one of the worlds biggest clubs!

Before I put some closure to this blogged episode of my life here’s a final unfinished piece that never got added… I found it just now on the word document I used to draft the blog before upload..

It’s been a while since I last wrote about what’s going on over here. Personally I’ve been having allot of things to think about and deal with as well as life over here being very quiet for a couple of weeks, times ticking by at light speed it seems but very routine at the same time. Being over here does give you the chance to step back and look at life as your own life does seem to stand still for 6 months, I’ve never really thought in depth about what I’m doing with my life or what things I’d like to do with my life except what I’m already doing. I’ve always admired my friends who can up sticks and travel the world or go and work abroad but I’ve always been too scared to disrupt my safe routine life… until I decided to spend 6 months in Iraq of course. Mind you I suppose the key thing there is I didn’t have to leave my job, which is one thing I’d never do as I’m intent on succeeding in a good career.
The emotional journey we’ve all gone through out here, from before you leave the UK to when your actually here is an achievement in itself. Being over here has brought allot of problems to allot of the lads with relationships ending or struggling. I suppose it’s to be expected as it’s a long time to be away. Some one said to me “I can remember saying to my mates before I came out here, if me and my girlfriend break up while I’m over there I’ll be in the best place, as I will have plenty of time to deal with it…. How wrong could I have been!” On reflection being over here is probably the worst place you can be! As when you’re on guard you’ve got allot of time to stand and think about what’s happening. All you can do is phone and write you can’t sit down face to face with your girlfriend and talk things through. Time over here does fly by but your memories of home are as you left it, like the photos on your wall, a freeze frame, your memories of home stand still while you’re here but the concern is life doesn’t stop back home. When you break up with your girlfriend normally after a month or so of getting on with life you start to feel better about it, as you’ve been to work, gone out with your mates, sat round moping etc but you can’t do any of that over here. The fear is that if you break up over here, with 3 months to go, when you get back your partner will be over you and moved on. How ever when you get back from a tour it’ll hit you full bore like it happened that very day.

That’s the last part I wrote and never got on-line. Some times were hard over there and emotionally everyone felt the strain and some point. Looking back now it’s easy to forget the bad parts and just remember the good. I see the lads now and there’s a special bond there and there always will be, would I change anything… No, I don’t think I would…

What’s prompted me to finish this blog of, well… when Radio 4 contacted me and said they wanted to use some of my blog for a radio piece I was surprised. When I listened to the show today it made me realize the life experience that my unit was open to over there and all the other troops experienced is something very rare, very terrible and special all at the same time. Like I said at the start of this blog, it’s why soldiers join the Army to actually do the job you train so long and hard for, it’s an odd one as its something people wouldn’t wish on a country or a person yet its still something people want to experience but some never will. So hearing first hand what its like opens peoples eyes to what its all really about. Hearing my blog read out, made me wish I had shared everything that happened through this blog as there was so much that went on now only a few will ever know of… this life chapter is over and there probably won’t be another of this scale in my life..

Mind you the way the world is today who knows the next blog I write could be from Afghanistan…