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.

Sunday, June 15, 2014


I know I haven't written in a while. For that I apologize, this will explain why and give you all something to think about as well.

           When you have personal issues in life you tend to shut other things down that aren't so important. You may stop doing things you enjoy, you may stop feeling things that you normally would, you may even stop taking care of yourself in extreme situations. Doctors look for this, and list them as signs that you are depressed and need help. I have been there obviously. One method for me to recover, was to take a break, a vacation.

            The idea of leaving my apartment and going away on vacation was about as nerve wrecking as going to the dentist for a week at a time. I didn't want to leave my comfy little apartment and certainly didn't want to drive 8 or 9 hours to go to a hotel and be somewhere strange where I don't know anyone. I have no backup and no weapons to defend myself and I have no way of getting home in a hurry if I  get spooked. Such things can make a "normal" person a bit nervous.

            So where do you go? Where do YOU go when you want to relax? Where do you retreat to when you have some time off? Most people go to a place they know or are familiar with. Most people go to a place they feel safe and secure right? What if you have NEVER had that before and you want to get out of your comfort zone and try something new? Where do you go? If you are like me, and I bet some of you are, you go somewhere that scares the hell out of you. You go somewhere that puts you right in the middle of crowds and people. You go somewhere that isn't safe and isn't familiar. You might go somewhere that is full of all the different cultures of the world. I decided to go to New Orleans and visit the French quarter. I have a friend who said that I would enjoy it and there was plenty of history there. The food will be amazing and you will have all the time you need to collect your thoughts and see the different side of things. That's what my friend told me. So, I drove 9 hours south and went to New Orleans.

         I have NEVER been on vacation before on my own. I have been with ex girlfriends, and when I was a kid I did the family trips camping and fishing. I have NEVER gone anywhere alone other than to travel from post to post in the Army. So, after 9 hours on the road I checked in to my hotel and decided to get out and see what I came to see. Bourbon street, here I come! No one warned me that if you are out having fun you need to make sure you don't over do it. I would normally have someone with me to watch me and make sure that I didn't go too far. Sure enough, I went too far. I drank way too much and had way too much fun listening to all the live music and seeing all the strange people walking around. I spent the next few days trying not to drink in a town that makes money selling alcohol and food. I heard plenty of live music and managed to enjoy a few beers without going over board. I can honestly say that I should have known better but was trying to relax and have fun. Some how I confused relax with being irresponsible.

            So after a few days in New Orleans I went to Florida. Pensacola beach, to be precise and there I had fun. There I was able to relax. No, seriously, I can relax. There I sat on the beach in my swim trunks and was so comfy and calm that I fell asleep on the beach and burnt my skin to a beet red. The following day I went to the Harborarium. I suppose you could say it was an aquarium with harbor attractions as well. There were shows and I got to meet a seal and a sea lion. I even got a kiss from a harbor seal.

            I discovered a few things while out on my vacation. I learned some things about me and who I am. I learned some things that can't be written down or explained. I gained the confidence that I can get past this hole in my life. I can move on from the past and be a whole person. I don't have to let my past cripple me and make me something I am not. I am a beautiful person and I can continue to be a beautiful person and no one has to tell me who or what I am. I can be happy knowing that I am just fine the way that I am. These things sound simple and easy to understand but for me saying them was much different than feeling them in my heart and knowing them to be true. There has always been a seed of doubt in my brain about my own worth. There has always been a part of me that thought that I was used baggage and because of my past and my issues I would never be someone worth getting to know or be with. One lady friend of mine a long time ago told me that I would never find the right woman because I was used baggage. Never listen to people who put you down, they aren't worth listening to. It would be different if she had said "you need to get past your past before you can meet the right person". She would have been completely right. She would have had a point worth sharing. She might have made a difference for the better not worse. What she said, was an attack and a judgement against a 19 year old boy who didn't know the world, didn't know the truth, didn't know his own worth, and didn't know how amazing he could become if he just gave himself the chance.

            We are all amazing people, we all have potential. We all have good days and bad and we all have our road to walk. On the road, there will be holes and stumbling blocks. On the road there will be flowers and trees and sunshine and rain. We must do our best to continue to walk the road and move forward while enjoying the things that it has to offer us. Good and bad, we can learn from every experience, which is why I believe we have experiences. We are meant to learn from them and use that knowledge to better ourselves and be a light for others to use when they need it. We are meant to help, each in our own little way, the better of man kind. As organs in the human body, each with it's own purpose we are all part of the human race and we are all connected to one another by that. Some people are like cancer, they just eat away at the whole of humanity. Others are like medicine, they stop the cancer and they fix the damage. Some are like tattoos, they offer color and light and something unexpected. Who ever we are, what ever our purpose in life, we should use what we have to better mankind not tear it down.

            I now have a bearded dragon Aiden, as my pet. She is a cute little cuddly dragon and as I write this post she is napping on my shoulder while we listen to classical Cello music. I am going to go to the lake today so I figured I would write this post and give her some attention before I head out. I encourage you to get outside your comfort zone and expand those boundaries. You will make mistakes, that's normal, but you can learn from them and move on. That's what we are here for anyways. Thanks for reading, I wish you all the best. I will be posting more, so please keep an eye out.

            If you are interested in bearded dragons or want to know more about mine, I am setting up a blog for her at . The Cuddly Cricket Crusher. I hope you enjoy. Please ask whatever questions or comments you have about dragons there. I will try to keep this blog as I have in the past more about getting through depression and the daily stuff that comes up in life. I hope you enjoy.


  1. I have trouble getting out of my comfort zones. I am proud of you that you did it! Sounds like it was good for your soul. Hope that you enjoy your day at the lake. I have never heard of a bearded dragon so I will check out her blog site!

    1. My "day" at the lake was compromised. I didn't get there until 11 am and when I got there I couldn't even get a bite. I found out later that they had lowered the water level and that's why the fish weren't biting. I did have a great day though and the weather was perfect. Thanks for your comment.