25 OCT 09 The Journal

Christmas exodus is from Dec 18th to Jan 3rd. I might have to do something called hometown recruiting during that time where you work a couple hours a day for your recruiting office. That way it does not eat into my leave time. I’ll have to look into it.

One of the guys left. He was saying he was suicidal and wanted to kill himself. They took his weapon away obviously and his boot laces. They also had him sleep with two fireguard sitting next to him and he had people accompany him everywhere. Whats weird is that he became depressed only 2 weeks till graduation. It seems kind of pointless to be so close to the end but still quit. Oh well. I guess he probably had his reasons. It is pretty high stress environment.

We have to rely on the unreliable to do simple jobs that are done by the stupid. It makes for a stressful environment when you can get smoked for things that are not your fault. Oh well though. It should be different when I get to my unit and have my commission.

DSC01907So the weather for our field training exercise should be good. We are going to be having heavy rain Tuesday and thunder storms Wednesday. It is a good thing because if it rains hard enough or if their is lighting they will not let the FTX continue and will probably be cancel the 9 mile ruck march.

Being a little more than a week away from graduating is a very strange idea for me. Time passes quickly and slowly here at the same time. The army adage “hurry up and wait” seems very apt. You rush around hurrying to get ready and then you stand in line or formation for some times hours at a time. As we get closer though time does seem to be slowing because we are so eager to graduate. All of us are ready for this phase of our training to be done.

It is hard for me to describe what it is like here but do know that this place seems to be almost utterly devoid of good feelings or happiness and seems to be built on generates of misery from the privates that have cycled through here over the years. The pain seems to ooze out of the walls and the floors. If one is not careful you can drown in the depression. I think that is what happened to the Soldier that left us because he was suicidal. The despair and sadness can build up and stack on itself if there is not a goal or reason to do this. You know my reasons for doing this but also know that you have helped me by just being there.

I know some people in the world are being physically tortured and killed by psychologically this place can break you. When we get smoked sometimes its so bad when we are done my ACUs are soaked with sweat and we are standing in pools of our own sweat. Sometimes its so bad that people throw up.

*This was the last letter. A few days later the Soldier graduated  and went on to Officer Candidate School (OCS) which is also located at Ft Benning.

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