What’s your 20?

That is cop talk referring to the 10 codes.  10-20 means location.

Does your current location affect you?  Have things changed since you came back from downrange?  Have things changed since you left your unit?  Good or Bad?

After we came back, I had my family and wanted to spend time doing things with them.  I was still surrounded by everyone from the deployment.  I still had a million things going on and every day I had a task ahead of me.

Today, without my family, without my soldiers, without an urgent task ahead of me it has been difficult.   I am only now realizing stuff.   I feel anger.  I feel frustration.  I feel judgmental.

When did things change?  Downrange?  When I got back?  When I PCS’d?  Or just because I have had time to think about it?  Or nothing to consume my focus?

I pretty much thought that I was just maladjusted.  I did not think that things had changed that much.

Truth be told some of this stuff has been there for awhile, I just haven’t realized it.   I had almost come to physical blows with one of my superiors during the deployment (more than once, lol.)  I had ripped out the person who was supposed to be my battle buddy on a regular basis.   Another argument I had with a superior after returning was pretty common knowledge, and I was guided back into the light by some good people.  I have never been the type to back down when I think that I am right, but this isn’t supposed to be typical of my character.  For the most part I think I am well respected.

I haven’t had the outbursts lately, but I find myself judging my leaders and superiors.  This sense of needing to validate the person, before I respect them.   This has a potential to cause real problems if I can’t get it under control.  This is contrary to what I teach to my own Soldiers.  But I just start looking at these people; wondering if they have been downrange, wondering if they can hold their own, wondering if this is the type of person who makes stupid decisions that get Soldiers injured or killed.  Is this the type of leader who puts 15 Soldiers on the road to inflate their ego and validate their position?  Instead of flying or hitching a ride, they take their own “personal” squad so they can visit a unit….or even go shopping at the PX.  There are a lot of pretenders and hypocrites around here.   SENIOR leaders with a single deployment to BUCCA and wearing a CAB?  I don’t think so.  These great double standard and “because I said so” leaders.  Even spoon-fed, can’t-hang junior leaders.  I am not perfect, but why am I so judgmental?  Why am I so angry?  When did things change?

It seems that for the longest time I would focus on helping other people or bury myself in work, and not pay attention to me.

I am only now really dealing with the loss of my daughter last fall.  Even then I focused on my wife’s grief, on taking care of my son, on getting back to work.  I did not grieve or take care of me.  I accepted it as something that I could not change, and focused on what needed to be done.  Now the pain wells up at random times without provocation.                                                                ….I cant really describe what this type of pain/grief/loss feels like, and I hope that none of you ever understands how it feels.

Maybe I need a hobby.  Being alone sucks.  Feeling alone sucks.  Thinking too much sucks.  I am grateful for this blog, the internet, my family, and my friends.

Did things change for you when you changed locations?  When you weren’t surrounded by everyone from the deployment?  If anyone else ever feels alone, depressed, desperate, or just wanting to talk.  Drop me a line, or post your thoughts up in here.

By Bryan H. Reed, Army Veteran OIF 07-09


2 responses to “What’s your 20?

  • William Campell

    Everything changed for me while in Iraq, probably within the first two or three weeks. I became numb to everything and everyone. I brought that feeling of detachment home with me. Everything I once enjoyed I no longer do. Now, my wife, my dog, the computer, and TV are my only companions. I little interest in anything else. Sounds a little pathetic but medical problems make it easy to remove myself from the world.

  • breed3231

    I am re-reading this post in a different perspective after this week…some of you guys may be feeling alone and hanging at the end of your ropes. Maybe you are without engaged leadership. Maybe you are without a close knit group of friends. Where are you? How is it affecting you? Do you have someone to talk to?

    I am still angry and have a lot of mixed up thoughts about losing another Soldier, but if you think about asking yourself “Would someone be there for me if I asked them?” The answer is yes. Step back from the bottle, screw the bullshit, and open your frigging mouth.

    “Being alone sucks. Feeling alone sucks.”

    “Did things change for you when you changed locations? When you weren’t surrounded by everyone from the deployment? If anyone else ever feels alone, depressed, desperate, or just wanting to talk. Drop me a line, or post your thoughts up in here.”

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: