Monday, October 02, 2006

The sound of sadness

I was talking on the phones at the USO to my wife and the guy next to me started sobbing uncontrollably. I didn’t say anything to her but for the final 5 minutes of our conversation, the sound of his hushed sobs were ringing in my ears, what could cause this grown man so much sadness? Earlier I heard him talking about making command decisions, (I wasn’t trying to overhear couldn’t help catching a word here and there because we were in a small room and he had a clear distinct voice), everything sounded alright till suddenly he broke down and started crying. He was older then me (gray hair) and it sounded like the floodgates of anguish just opened up and overwhelming him, maybe he was doing a telephone revival? It’s been a long time since I’ve felt anything even close to the anguish that he was going through. With all sharp emotions, your mind tends to blank the badness out so I can’t even really name that instance that I’ve felt the way he sounded. It was spooky.

Listening to him cry made me think about my self and evaluate how I was handing being out here. So I did a mental defrag on my personal processor and all I came up with is not too bad, I’ve had a sad night or two but that’s is, while I do miss my wife like mad but I am far from a basket case. I know what loneliness is like having spent years of my life in that state and I know I’m not feeling that emotion right now. I know with out a single doubt in my head my wife is right there, we communicate daily and the only why we could improve our communication is to develop telepathy.

Being the geeky boy that I am, I have developed natural loneliness coping skills. I’m not the guy who’s going to go crazy in solitary if anything I prefer the solitude to crowds but can live with either. I do like people and I like seeing friends but I have to work at being a social animal because it’s not my natural environment. You see people like me all the time, they sit in the corner of the cafeteria and read books while eating, we’re a little apart from everybody else, we’re not the popular kids and got picked on for being nerdy. Most of us are unhappy and would have given anything to be popular, as I got old I realized that popularity isn’t all it’s cracked up to be. These days, the only people that I care about being popular with are the ones in my life. I’m a grown up happy geek and no one picks on me these days.

In my bride, I’ve really found a perfect kindred spirit, a fellow geek and loner, she anchors me down to earth and is the rock that keeps the turbulence of like from washing me away. Without her, that crying guy could have been me, if I had married someone who didn’t understand me from the inside, just the presence of someone like my wife has given me a shield that protects me from much of the negative emotions that come with deploying. I’m an easy going guy and there were many times in my life where it would have been easy to settle with someone else and I could have made it work. The problem is I was lonely during all of those relationships, there wasn’t a single day when I didn’t ask myself, is there more then this? Most people do that and learn to live with their mate, me? I’ve been lucky and was born to live with mine, she’s my matching odd duck, the other pea in my pod who looks at the world through the same tint in her rose colore glasses, I was lonely all of my life before I met her and she chased that lonely feeling away and I haven’t felt it since. I couldn’t have imagined a girl like her and I have a fairly fertile imagination. Thanks hun for marrying me and keeping me from being lonely and sad the rest of my life.


Some other milbloggers are talking about phone calls home too, there's no way around it, it's tough being away from home for a year.

Spouse Buzz, I love you too
Jack Army "What will we do with out you?"
Sgt Hook, The Other Man

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