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I don't know if anyone who I used to talk to here even remembers me. It's been so long since I even logged in, much less uploaded anything. And when I look through my stuff now and see the work that other's have done, it makes me a little bit sad. I used to love drawing and painting and the most I do now is a few tattoo designs here and there, and even those aren't very good. But people are still going crazy whenever they see my stuff which I don't get (the people I work with aren't very bright- don't get me wrong, I love them to death. They're like family. But they're just so damn stupid).

I've been in the Army for three years now and I've gotten everything I wanted out of it. Before the Army, the challenge of trying to come up with a knockout idea and then executing that idea with every bit of technical proficiency you can muster was great. Feeling that moment of triumph when something went the way it was supposed to, or seeing your work published, was all I could ever have asked for at the time. It was all I wanted.

But then I got restless. I physically couldn't stay in the house. Every night I would leave and walk around the city, I couldn't figure out what I needed, I just knew it felt like I was wasting my time. There was this horrible ever present itch int he back of my mind that couldn't be scratched. I needed to uproot myself. I had to get away from everything that was familiar. I ended up joining the Army as a Combat Engineer. And in the three years I've been in the Army, I have been:

- So sore I couldn't walk.
- So disheartened I wanted to give up.
- So tired I was hallucinating.
- In so much pain I couldn't think straight.
- I've been fucked over
- I've been betrayed in little ways by little people
- I've been demoted (that one was my fault)
- I've felt the loss of someone close being violently and irrevocably ripped away
- I've been so drunk I blacked out
- I've been so hungover that I couldn't get out of bed or off the floor (depending on where the party ended)

I've been through firefights and IED blasts. I've been yelled at for hours on end. I've worked, walked, and ran through some of the worst conditions people can ever imagine. I've seen an unrelenting, angry, stupid, violent side of humanity itself. I've even been a part of that violence. And when I was, I felt alive.

But it wasn't all bad. Throughout my time in the Army I've met people that I would die for. People that I watched over while they simultaneously watched over me. I have tried my best to defer, defend, and deflect for the guys that I work and live with. I've partied harder than anyone could imagine. I have squeezed the last three years of my life for every drop of experience I could. And I've learned to appreciate my down time when the opportunity comes.

After I joined the Army, I realized what had been missing during those late nights where I would aimlessly wander through the city back home. I was restless. I wasn't doing enough with my life. I wanted life experience and that adrenaline rush. I wanted a little excitement. Which I got in full measure, but I also got the other side of that. The fear that death might come at any minute. Which I will freely admit that it scared the absolute shit out of me, but I'm glad for the experience. I've gotten physically and mentally tougher. I have a better understanding and appreciation for those things that most people take for granted.

Not entirely sure where I was going with this but I felt that I had to get it out of my system. I guess I'm trying to say that life is short, don't waste it (which is so vague that's it's practically meaningless). People die everyday. None of us know when our number is up, and no one really knows what lies on the other side of death. So take the time that you have and make the most of it. If there is something you want out there, fuck what everyone else thinks and go for it. No one is going to give you a damn thing in this world. Go out and take it.

"Your life is yours alone. Rise up and live it" -Richard Rahl (The Sword of Truth series by Terry Goodkind)
luigipanda Featured By Owner Oct 17, 2011  Professional General Artist
I think is the first time I read you, I don't remember how I got with your gallery but I like your art style, I mean you illustration are original ideas...
I see heavy words of hard experience of a strong spirit, a great help for who need It.
May I congratulate you for being a true hero?
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Submitted on
October 17, 2011