My Name is Matthew, and I am a soldier. I have an interesting view that I share from time to time with the folks I encounter as I walk the road. Some of those people have encouraged me to seek out ways to help others or simply share my views or ideas with more people. I will blog on many subjects, from things that piss me off on a daily basis to more important issues such as dealing with chronic depression and the struggles that ensue as a result. I will be taking bits and pieces from emails and rants that I have verbalized as well, so if you see something we have talked about please, smile and nod...Thanks for reading.

Monday, March 31, 2014


I woke up today, and hit that button that shuts the alarm off. I curled into my little ball and tried to fall back to sleep before the damn thing went off again. I have to be at work at 6:15, not a moment late or bad things happen. I live, at best, 15 minutes from work. I hit the button again, and tried to imagine myself back asleep, warm and safe and sleepy in my own little dream world. I hit the button again. Then, like a bad dream, reality came in and stole my happy moment. I suddenly realized that I had about five minutes, to get packed, dressed, and out of the house.

I didn't want to move, I wanted to call my boss and tell him that I'm not moving today and I don't care what stupid consequences there would be. I thought about it, then threw the covers off me and raced through my house and out the door. Some how, the only thing I forgot to bring, was the coffee.... *CRY*.

I got to work, intent on not talking to anyone, not being social, not interacting. I just wanted to be left alone to process the events of the last 48 hours. I wanted to be quiet and just do my thing and ride out today. That was the intent. Life, has a funny way of taking our intent from us, laughing at it and then making us do what it wants. I had to lead the group on a run.

In my mood, one of two things was going to happen, either I was going to push the line and hurt myself and my group, or I was going to go slow and calm, and keep it steady. I opted for slow and calm. We ran a little over two miles and made it back with time to spare. Having gone at a leisurely pace, I didn't feel that I hurt anyone. Stretch and on into an ab work out. I pushed just hard enough so that my abs could feel it, and then I let the guys go. Sun light, can increase seratonin, and make us feel better. That's what the PHD's say. I say that if you are out in the sun, and you aren't hurting yourself or working yourself into an early wheel chair, you should be enjoying yourself. I smiled, a genuine smile.

Some how, my day went from, running late and wishing I could sleep all day to this. Now I'm here, typing and all I can think about is, for the next five minutes, I can write and let this out. For the next five minutes, I can put my thoughts into words and breathe. As my co workers chatter in the other room, I can type this out and think freely. Those who love me are offering encouragement. Those who don't can go somewhere nasty and stay there.

Quick sand is real, and it can swallow you up if you let it. That one bad event that turns a good day into something ugly. If you admit that one bad thing can change your day, why can't one good thing? Why can't we allow ourselves to be propelled into the future on good energy and good events? Who the hell says we can't? What right do they have to dictate MY future? ... anyone? ... Class? ... Are you listening? ... NONE.  That's right, no one has the right to ruin my day. Not you, not the moron in the car in front of me doing 5 MPH in a 35. No one. You don't have the right, nor the power to change my good day into a bad one. So, if you aren't smiling and happy and trying to have a good day I have just one question for you... Who said you have to allow things to make you miserable?

Sunday, March 30, 2014

Little steps

Sometimes I forget that the small steps make the biggest difference. I watched a movie today, and while watching it, I broke down into tears no less than five separate times. I kept seeing myself in the main character. I kept identifying with the issues being displayed. I kept feeling alone and un-heard. I kept feeling as though I was in a private hell designed just for me. I kept feeling as though I would never find comfort again. I thought of myself as alone. Reaching out is sometimes the hardest thing to do.
       I sent a text to my boss, telling him I was going through some troubling times. I sent a text to my Lover, telling her that I was sorry I was so out of it. I tried to explain that, I have been feeling like Super Man lately and I thought that I would be okay without my medication. I thought that I was all right. I felt that I was doing well. I felt confident, that I didn't need the medication. I was wrong. I pushed myself into a corner, shut out the lights, and expected the world to make sense again. I went down the rabbit hole without my flash light. There are dark and scary things in that little rabbit hole. There are things that would make you wish you had some support.
         No one should ever feel alone. No one should ever feel that the walls are closing in on them and there is no where to go. That leads down a dark dark road that no one should ever walk down. The doors start to close and there seems to be no light at the end of the tunnel. Suddenly there is light, and we rush for it, only to see that it is a train bearing down on us with no mercy. There is mercy in this world, there are people there to help us when we stumble and fall. There are ways to deal with the darkness, there is a hope, that doesn't turn out to be a train. We must stand firm and try again. We must pick ourselves up when we fall. We cannot rely on the world to help us. We cannot rely on our family or friends to understand us. We cannot rely on our friends to understand the twisted reality we have  woven for ourselves to live within. That is ours, and we dare not share it with anyone. The moment we do, we allow that reality to be crushed under the boot heels of our "friends". We allow them power over a secret world that is our own. Hold dear to your truths for they are yours. Hold dear to who you are, for it is all you have. When the lights go out, and the world fades into the black beyond, you have only yourself. That can be a comfort to those who are introverts. Those who need not other people who can understand. Those of us who still need the world, those of us who are not yet capable of being completely alone to our own devices. Those of us who still need the medication, we must hold tight to ourselves, and not allow for vulnerability.
        Prayer, and faith, some would say, will see you through. Self help, and a better understanding of who you are, others would argue is the ultimate goal. Some people will throw ideas at you like a child in the kitchen trying to decide if the spaghetti is done or not. Waiting for something to stick to the cabinet doors, trying to push ideas until they make sense to a mind warped by the torments of the past. Some people would watch and learn from you and dissect like a scientist with a foreign bug, trying to see where the heart, liver, and lungs are. They will rip you to shreds only to tell you your darkest secrets without you ever knowing you gave any inclination you had such a troubling past. They do this in order to show you that you aren't alone, someone else had the same issues long ago. That is great for the doctor, but it doesn't help YOU. It doesn't explain or mitigate the pain you currently suffer from! YOU need answers, YOU need a new way of thinking, a new method for dealing with the issues that make you cry when a commercial comes on the radio. YOU need a method for process that doesn't involve the subjugation to romanticized versions of a past not your own but embellished from bits and pieces of other people's drama in order to placate you and lure you into a false sense of well being. YOU need to be okay with who you are, and not a bit of rhetoric from the past or some text book answers will do.
        Yesterday I wrote about courage, and I puffed and huffed and blew smoke as thick as I could. I lied to you and to myself, because at the moment that lie gave me strength. Now, I feel defeated and lost. At the moment I feel alone, completely out of touch with anyone and anything. I am in no danger of hurting myself. I set that block a long time ago, I simply won't do that. But what do I tell you about someone who hasn't yet set that block who is where I am mentally right now, this very second?
        What I can tell you, is that if you are reading this, you are alive. You are trying to understand the message that I am attempting to convey with the limited vocabulary that I have. You therefor, haven't given up yet. You may be in pain, and I may never know you or understand the depth of pain you feel, but you are in pain none the less. Maybe you aren't in pain, and you just can remember a time when you were, and are hoping that my words may help for the next time you are in pain. Either case, this is relevant. Someone I know once said "We are all either in a storm, just coming out of one, or heading directly into one". The message is that, trials don't just stop. Mental pain and suffering is a part of life that we must learn to mitigate. If you are reading this you are still alive. You can still process.
            SAVOR every moment. I don't mean, SUFFER every moment. We all suffer, it's no fun, so screw that. SAVOR every moment. Make each one powerful and potent. Take everything you can from every single moment. As I lay on my couch huffing and sniveling into a tissue, I tried to understand the thought process. SAVOR. Yes, savor. Truly appreciate your suffering. If you are spiritual, offer that suffering up as a gift to GOD. If you are Catholic or Christian, offer that suffering up to God or Jesus as a testament that you are human and you too suffer. Acknowledge that you are going through a trial and you are trying to do your job of carrying your cross. If you aren't religious, savor that pain and realize that the simple fact that you can feel it means that you are alive and therefor have defeated the object of your pain. You have control over that very moment. Yes, it hurts, YES it is bringing you to tears, YES your chest feels like an elephant has decided to stomp you into nothing. YES, the pain is real. YES you can still feel it. You have the ability to perceive pain. You are alive, and therefor the battle is not over yet. You are not in the ground yet, it has not claimed you. YOU still have the moment. YOU still have control over that still small bit of yourself that feels, and you are allowing yourself to feel pain. Breath in, and breathe out. You can make it through this.

If at any time, you feel as though you can't THERE ARE PEOPLE WHO CARE ABOUT YOU THAT YOU DON'T EVEN KNOW ABOUT. Aunts, Uncles, Parents, friends, co workers, Chaplins, Priests, Clergy, 1-800-273-TALK, Any hospital will take you in and help you talk it out. REACH OUT. If I can do it, anyone can.
I wish you all the best. Thank you for reading

Saturday, March 29, 2014


When you think of courage, you probably imagine the Cowardly Lion from the Wizard of Oz. Maybe you imagine a movie with soldiers dying on some foreign field of battle. Maybe you imagine courage as something more real and tangible. Maybe for you, courage is the face in the mirror. Maybe for you courage is waking up in the morning and getting out of bed and going to work knowing that today could be just as lousy as yesterday but I'm going to go to work and do my best anyways. Maybe courage is that first date, after you were courageous enough to ask for the phone number that she gave you while feeling nervous her own self.

Whatever you call it, we all have it. We all have this internal STUFF that gets activated and gives us strength when we know we should be hiding and cowering in the corner. Something inside us all forces us to stand up and challenge the bully. Something inside every one of us tells that face in the mirror, "I'm NOT DONE YET!". Something cosmic takes place in that moment when we stand instead of  cower. Something very real and powerful happens to us. We rise up and challenge the world, the enemy, our own self, who ever stands between us and what we believe, or what we want. Something that can scare us so bad that we want to run and hide, loses power in that instance and we gain it. The shift in power gives us hope, or drive.

Every single day of my life, I have a challenge. I'm not always sure what it will be, but sure enough, every day there is something I must learn from, understand, challenge, or conquer. Something happens just about every single day that makes me take a second look at the man in the mirror and wonder, what will he do next? Most often I have to overcome my urge to be scared, or second guess myself. Some times, it's a better understanding of the people around me that I'm challenged to grasp. Sometimes I have to dig for it, I'm' sad and angry and alone and feeling it and I'm not sure WHY!? That is the challenge on those days. Questions like "why must I be so scared of getting out and meeting new people?".

There is hope, for all of us out there. There is a ray of sun shine that I must share with anyone reading this. Truth be told, I don't care how many people read this, for me just writing it is a little victory, getting the thoughts out and being able to look at them. This is therapy for me. I'm okay with that. That's why I'm not trolling around trying to get more people to follow me. I respect everyone and I appreciate all the comments. Believe me, if you are reading this and offering constructive thoughts and comments, I appreciate you more than you could know. It validates what I already believe. I'm getting off the point. Allow me to digress.

The hope out there is in the form of positive reinforcement. Every time we take a step forward, show that courage, we are bolstered. Ironic isn't it? When we act out of courage and fail, we draw back. When we act out of courage and succeed we feel like we could take on the next TEN obstacles and be victorious. However, if we act out of courage and FAIL, well the some of us try again. The harder we try and the more effort we express, the more we push ourselves the sweeter the victory when we finally do overcome the challenge. Notice how, there is no down side here? When we act out of courage, we win, no matter what. Either we overcome the challenge, or we fail and are afforded the opportunity to learn from that failure. The only true failure is not learning. Who the heck wants to go through something unpleasant and not walk away with anything? We just need to be smart or patient enough to learn from the experience. Open our minds enough to allow for learning.

I woke up today, and for the first time in a long time I was HUNGRY. I'm not talking about physical hunger, although I did enjoy my coffee and yogurt. I'm talking about the hunger for the next lesson. I have things that are happening in my life right now, like everyone, BEYOND MY CONTROL. I was hungry for the next challenge. I was HUNGRY for the next obstacle. I DESIRED the thrill of uncertainty. Who the heck wants to live a boring life, day in day out, knowing what will happen tomorrow? So scared of something foreign that we ignore the things we should be noticing. The things we take for granted will claim our complacency and rob us of the opportunity to become something GREAT. I am happy today because today, for the first time in a long time, I narrowed my eyes at the future, at the man in the mirror. I gritted my teeth and softly whispered "BRING IT ON".

I wish that everyone would find the courage within themselves to climb out of the comfort zone, because that's where the magic happens. Continue to do the things that allow you to express yourself. If you fail, LEARN and then succeed at finding out what else doesn't work. Solve the internal mystery of who you are, and learn those strengths and weaknesses. KNOW YOURSELF, and respect yourself. Then the courage will bloom like a flower on a spring morning, just as bright, just as beautiful, and the victory will smell just as sweet.

Best wishes to you all, thank you for reading.

Friday, March 7, 2014

Friday Night

I had a week, one nasty seven days in eternity that served to lay a few bricks in the foundation of my road to recovery. I have accepted that the last 32 years or so of my life have done some intense damage to me. I have also accepted that everything I do, every mental step I take from here on out is either to further my recovery or further damage my sorry little backside. I was laying in bed, wrapped in the serenity of my Lover's arms feeling completely vulnerable. I allowed myself to recall the dark moments in my life and re live them while in her arms. In that blissful moment I realized how important it is for me to re live the hell that made me who I am. Not only re live that hell, but recover from it. They call it "Exposure" in the psychiatric world. They tell you that you need to allow yourself to experience the things that hurt you the most and allow yourself to come through that. There is hope of getting through those moments. There is hope that you can feel better after the hell you allow yourself to feel. I feel it is powerful enough to write down and share, beautiful that you can feel such pain and come through it. I have been prescribed medication to deal with moments of pain and anxiety. I have medical life lines to use for moments when I can't bear it. I didn't use that today, because I felt it important to feel every moment. Pain medication will kill and mask the pain you feel, but you can also do more damage to yourself when you don't feel the pain you are supposed to feel. If you allow yourself to feel the pain, and get through it, you can own that moment. You can own the pain, and the moment and be truly powerful.

I take every moment and soak what I can out of it. Sometimes I take it for granted, and forget that even the hell that I go through is supposed to TEACH ME SOMETHING. Something I wouldn't learn any other way. Some days I forget that the pain I'm going through isn't the worst pain in the world. Sometimes, I even feel that my pain is the only pain in the world. I forget that people close to me have their own personal hell that they are going through. I forget that even those I myself lean on for strength, can have moments of complete and total vulnerability. Those people in my life that I feel are always there for me when I'm weak, have their moments of weakness.

I take the moment, and hold it in my hand and cherish it, because it only last a moment. I take every drop of power left to me in each moment I am fortunate enough to feel. Don't allow yourself to live in the mistakes you made, don't allow yourself to dwell in the ache of your soul. Don't convince yourself, like I sometimes do, that your hell is all that is there. Pull yourself through the pain, and if you need a hand REACH OUT.

I wish you all the best, thank you for reading.