IT’S THE FINAL COUNTDOWN

I’m going to try and make it through writing this post without tearing up on my end. But the fact of the matter is that this week is zero week. Deployment week. The week where my dreams and my nightmares collide in a beautiful display. It’s time to face the music, push all fear out of my mind, grab my B-A-11’s and go out to do my job.

I have two reactions to this new adventure in a far away land, this bold new chapter of my life. The first is pure unadulterated excitement. This is what I’ve wanted to do since I was small. To go pick up a gun and head to a big far away land and protect my family and my country. To go fight for the greatest fighting force on earth and do my loved ones proud. Sure the road took a lot of different twists and turns. A lot of highs and lows along the way, but the time is now here to hop on a bird and go.

The second reaction is fear. Not fear of death. I’ve trained enough for that to not be a factor. I have no problem with sacrificing myself for those I love. Death is no fear of mine. He is my brother. There is a saying among us infantrymen. “Even though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil. For I am the baddest motherfucker in the valley.” So death I do not fear. So what do I fear? I fear leaving people behind. A lot of my readers don’t know this, but my family kicked me out after I left college. This lead to me joining the army to get away from them, lots of daddy and trust issues, and the need for people to be in my life to replace that void. And I have found them. In Chattanooga, a family opened up a door. They invited me into their home because I was a friend of their sons. It was that family that showed what it was to be loved again. They didn’t see a broken, angry shell of a man struggling to make sense of everything. They saw someone who their boys loved who needed some compassion. A weekend turned into an invite to join them for Christmas, and then for the fourth of July. And then the time came for pre-deployment leave. With my truck in the wrecking yard, they still let me come on over for a week to relax. They picked me up from the bus station. And it was during that week with that family that I realized how much they meant to me. Then came a weekend with another family. Dear friends of the family that adopted me. They too are my family now. And that is what I fear. I fear leaving them and not seeing them again. Leaving them and not coming home and giving them a huge hug. That is what I fear. It has always been my fear. Despite my tough exterior that I front, I care deeply about people. My brothers in my platoon, my five brothers and four sisters in Chattanooga. My two wonderful sets of parents. These people mean the world to me and I cannot imagine where I would be without them in my life.

Jesus Christ I’m starting to get emotional over here. Time to wrap things up. Nine months in a kitty litter box is going to be tough, but I will get through it. For all of you who read this, I have one request from you. Please support us as we go fight the rag heads. I cannot say what our missions are gonna be, but they are going to be inherently dangerous. If you are the praying type, feel free to pray for us. Care packages are also a big request on our end here as well. Candy, snacks, toiletries, and forms of entertainment are the tops request here at 3rd batt. I’ll leave my email at the bottom if you want to contact me. But most of all, support us. With this world headed straight to hell, we are the first ones to protect you. And it is my pleasure to do so.

That’s all for now. 36R out.

brandoj2015@outlook.com. Feel free to contact me!

 

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