James W.D. Stewart

James W.D. Stewart

Embrace "The Suck"


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You're thinking, "That doesn't make sense.  They're happy to have him home.  That's all that matters to them.  He's safe and alive".

True…  That's their first reaction — lasting until the welcome home hug and the long breathless embrace.  It's afterward, when you each pull-back and look into the other's eyes.  That's when you lose each other.

Let's assume that you're his father.  When this vet left for war, he was still your boy — full of fun and pranks.  Life was an open invitation to adventure — anything was possible.  That's the image wich has been locked inside of your mind since he left.  Your response now, to this vet, is to that image.

/blog/2017/06/02/coming-home/

https://forces.army/blog/2017/06/02/coming-home/

Coming Home

Count Words — Reading Time
by James Stewart
Published: 
Updated:  N/A
Location:  The Donovan, Sudbury, Ontario, Canada
 

 

You're thinking, "That doesn't make sense.  They're happy to have him home.  That's all that matters to them.  He's safe and alive".

True…  That's their first reaction — lasting until the welcome home hug and the long breathless embrace.  It's afterward, when you each pull-back and look into the other's eyes.  That's when you lose each other.

Let's assume that you're his father.  When this vet left for war, he was still your boy — full of fun and pranks.  Life was an open invitation to adventure — anything was possible.  That's the image wich has been locked inside of your mind since he left.  Your response now, to this vet, is to that image.

However, that's not the image before you now though.  His eyes tell you how much that he's changed.  Their twinkle is gone — his gaze is unwavering.  But, deep beneath its open appraisal, dwells confusion, hurt, and pain — a longing for returned innocence.

After months at war, your boy's grown older than you.  He's lived with death chasing him…  Usually, on the roadside and/or on the path of a local village.  How many improvised explosive devices have killed his buddies?  Those buddies became closer to him than you, his own Dad.

Alhough he's happy to see you, his heart yearns for those left behind — for the adrenalin rush, for the heart-pounding fear — for the ecstasy of mutual relief, when they beat death together, one more time.  Even what he smells has changed.  Every new scent's tainted with his memory of reeking cordite, burnt flesh, gas fumes, and/or the stench of spewed guts.

For that moment, he's vulnerable.  He lets you see into him, and then, the impact of seeing you again strikes him.  He sees how you've changed, and aged, worrying about him.  Mentally, he pulls a mask over his need for comfort, to protect you from all that he's seen and what he's become.  To defend and protect.  Who better than the ones whom he loves?

He shakes off the sudden sense of discomfort and uncertainty.  He says to himself, "I'm home.  Everything will be fine".

And now, the estranged tap dancing around each other begins.

 
Categories:  Innominate  
Tags:  MyCAF, Relationship, Self, The Suck

 
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Creative Commons Licence :: BY-NC-SA James W.D. Stewart by James Stewart is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-NonCommercial-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.  Based on a work at https://github.com/jwds1978/jwds1978.github.io.