Tuesday, November 8, 2016
How is it !?
How is it that we can fall from grace so quickly whilst trying to please so much. I can't fathom the transgressions committed to become the outsider so quickly.
I fully realise we all have our quirks and anomalies that govern day to day emotional and mental state. And with this in mind I tread ever so carefully, but evidently not carefully enough.
It would appear that I am blind to both and now face the same quilt as an offender.
Kinda weird at the best of times.
"c'est la vie"
[ this was penned many moons ago but as I am again conflicted emotionally it is rather apt. You would think at the ripe old age of 50 yrs I would have learnt, but apparently not ... ]
Wow! Time is the most precious commodity we as humans have and it flies without concern or gratitude to or for this world. I have come to realize that you can indeed compress immense portions of life into a very short space in time and still fall in love and just as easily fall out of love within this period. Firstly I don’t think I have fallen out of love but rather put a check on my free flowing emotions.
The reason I have been so quiet lately is purely for the fact that I tried the emotionless relationship of companionship only with a wonderful person indeed. It worked for awhile but inherently people need more than that to survive and well an ‘ex lover’ returned and proved to be a bigger pull than I had on her, and she returned to him with some tears and I have no doubt some gratitude for having a mission in life to work on again. Casual relationships only fill a certain need in ones heart. If you are looking for the whole trip then you need to be on the same wavelength as a potential partner. Well there I was friendless and pining for the right one and spent many hours, days and weeks leading into months reading and writing my heart into passion and cheap thrills, but all this to no avail. After loosing what I had I finally made a decision and ventured out and having placed my heart on my sleeve for the first time in many years I thought I would advertise the fact that I had a heart to swop for a like minded person who wished to trade their heart for mine and we would act as benefactors or custodians of each others most precious item. I found the most adorable person I could hope to meet and we treaded carefully for several months before meeting and when we did we were both hooked.
Being of certain age and experience we decided to take things slowly which we did and to date it has been a wondrous affair of old. You remember your folks talking of the ‘old’ days when they courted and it was such a grand affair and worthwhile past time. Well we were fine, and in tune. I likened it to an old pair of gloves that just seemed to fit the hands of the wearer immediately and bought memories and emotions flooding back of that first kiss, the first close dance and then obviously the first venture into the core of reasons why two lovers get together. It was to say the least a bit overwhelming and I found out that ‘puppy’ love is not a teenage obsession or right as I often thought after becoming an adult. My palms perspired constantly, and my stomach muscles became sore from holding it in all the time I was in her company. I would babble just to stay a bit longer to chat. I knew I should leave but couldn’t face saying goodbye, even if it was for a few days. I bought a new wardrobe as she was to be impressed at every turn and I thrived on her communications.
But yes I am sure you get the drift, I was besotted and rightly so as she is simply amazing. Now as crazy as this seems this all happened unexpectedly and all this took place over a three month period of which the first two were via emails and the internet chat rooms. The third and last month we met one Saturday morning for coffee. She wore white and brown designer sport shoes, jeans and a loose white jersey type top. You know the baseball jersey type, cotton and comfortable. I saw her coming down the escalator and knew that I was about to fall in love. Needless to say we hit it off and numerous meetings, diners and movies generated an easy going path of discovery and it fitted so well I was really afraid of how good it felt. We both took it easy and peered into each others lives and environments with feelings you could liken to kids at Christmas time opening presents and discovering that the presents exceed their wish list sent to Santa.
Here is the crunch! One month from our first meeting in person we arrange to get together for a coffee and a meal at ‘our’ coffee shop. That afternoon I arranged to reserve the same table even though they do not usually do it and after the manageress heard my reasoning she quickly made the arrangements and assured me all would be ok. I swung by the movie houses and collected two tickets to an animated movie “WALL-E” I bought the most exquisite yellow roses with a red rim around each flower and put on the best jacket and jeans, trimmed the beard, splashed on some stinky stuff and as always made my way through to her side of town early. During the course of the day I had planned to get a bit more serious with regards to our relationship with respect to starting to meet friends and family etc so I was nervous and all. Being her side of town so close to her but not able to just drop in until the pre arranged hour drove me crazy and yet it really felt good.
Well ten minutes prior to the pick up an sms comes through saying she is sorry but tonight is off. She would explain latter. Damn my heart missed a beat, what had happened? I saw in my minds eye a family death or son arrested or in an accident of some kind. I imagined her at a hospital somewhere with a sick friend. I did not phone but rather sms’ed back offering any assistance that she may need. No reply ! I hung around in the neighborhood waiting for a sms or call to explain for almost an hour and then decided that she may not even be at home so what was the use? On my return home my mind started ticking over and being rather practical and analytical in nature I eliminated all the possibilities of family or friend being ill and came to two possible explanations or conclusions. The first was that her son had been arrested or somehow got involved with something potentially embarrassing that she could not share with me or that secondly an old flame had pitched up and she was with him. It was the only two logical explanations I could come up with because anything else would have been in the sms. “Friend ill cant make it sorry or “Problem at home cant make it sorry”
So I headed off to ‘our’ coffee shop with the flowers laying scattered on the highway just opposite the PPC factory. I ate a meal fit for a king alone at ‘our’ table and went to the movie as planned. I hardly enjoyed it with an open seat next to me but watched anyway. I headed off for coffee and ice cream with chocolate sauce as we once did and returned home. I climbed into bed but got no sleep. I spent Sunday waiting for a sms or a call of explanation, mostly out of concern for her wellbeing and partly to confirm my fears. Sunday came and went Monday, Tuesday and then Wednesday I sms a request to get together. We met Thursday evening at her place. Very reserved and quiet approach and one of my first questions was “Are we still alright” Yes definitely was her reply but it lacked conviction and then I knew my enchanted spell had just been broken. I so wanted to run and hide my foolish head in the sand. I asked her instead about Saturday night and she said that she had received a call from an ex who was stranded at the airport and she went through to pick him up and offer him a place to stay.
Believe it or not I could have handled that if she had told me on Saturday night, and even accepted that for what it was, but not six days later. I asked her the confirmation question about her feelings for him kind of knowing that it was the death throw question in my mind namely either a yes or maybe would seal my fate. She hesitated and in that moment of hesitation I had my answer. She said she was not sure. I pathetically and lamely told her to take a week or two to confirm her feelings and even though I stayed and chatted awhile I felt sick to the core. I hugged her goodbye and told her that she was loved and left. And here I sit not knowing what to think or what to do as this is the first weekend I have not been looking forward to since I met her. The thought of her entertaining someone else’s emotions is killing me. And believe it or not I honestly hope she finds the happiness she so deserves, as she is the most awesome person I have met. I can hold no grudge or ill thought as she is still the woman I met at ‘our’ coffee shop and meant so much to me albeit for a very short while in my life. Will we get together again? I am at this stage not sure if I can handle being second best.
I am the type of person who is everything or nothing both in giving and receiving so emotionally I am seriously confused. My heart and my mind are having this ‘bastard’ slapping contest with respect to what each one wants what and how they should claim it. It will be awhile before I wear my heart out in the open again. It seems that I can not shake the ‘old’ me off his perch. If you ever get to read this Ness I meant it when I told you, you are loved and ask anyone that knows me longer than a few weeks and they will tell you those are words that do not easily pass through my lips. May God shower you with his grace and He may take my allocated portion for you to have too. I miss you already and all I ask is that you ensure that ‘he’ treats you like the princess you are. Demand respect and love at every turn, as that is what you are due.
Saturday, November 5, 2016
There are moments in life that take your breath away.
The interaction, the joy, the fun all lead to your smiles and your heart. It is so easy to dream, create, imagine, a life of such joy that reality more often than not takes a back seat.
The beauty and measure of its success are determined by the longevity of the smiles, joy and euphoria felt during this time. If this natural high fades, or diminishes then serious consideration needs to be applied and personal evaluations thoroughly explored.
But this is the nature of the beast when matters of the heart are contemplated and explored. I find the first step to stability is letting go. Rid your body and soul of expectations, historic events, hopes, desires' and above all ego. Mentally dump everything you know or have experienced in the past. At this juncture I wish to add that this for many people is almost an impossible task. Thus history and people are destined to repeat their actions and obtain similar results time and time again. Seriously look at this love through new eyes, endeavor to treat each and every contact as a first time event.
The real beauty of the experience is that of elation and abandonment. Not having to stick to the rules and doctrines laid out by society, parents, church or upbringing have a profound affect on our soul. Understanding that you possess the key to love and sharing is a wondrous thing. It is in itself unique in this modern lifestyle and quite often becomes a life changing experience, if and when you remain true to yourself.
When you awaken in the morning and understand that someone loves you, to the extent that they do, your body, mind and soul feed off each other till they are filled to capacity. No matter what your normal day holds this single emotion and realization trumps all. This being said, we must also be realistic and if this emotion or realization does not occur or is not realized then never give up searching. Trust me when I say that the joy of a loved heart has no comparison, and you must seek till the ends of time because it does exist and deserved your experience and sharing.
Once found respect and cherish it for as long as it lasts and you are mentally and physically able. Do not assume it will be around forever and never treat it lightly or show any form of disrespect or familiarity as it is a fine balance especially in the very beginning of this phase.
You may never realize the karmic debt we have to each other and we will also never really know the course we will take or the longevity of the experience, but by remain true to each other with respect and honesty and you will find there is more than a fighting chance of survival.
To experience love at this all consuming level is a gift in time and any 'of this world' items, activities, duties and entertainment pale into insignificance when it comes to true love. If the subsequent events or contact does not yield the same awe inspiring emotions or love then do not despair for matters of the heart and soul are governed by the rules of this universe and always have and always will long after we are gone. Cherish what we get and do not restrict your experience by trying to measure it against old or lost loves.
If ever asked as to my crowning achievement in life I would gladly claim that I have loved a beautiful woman. Do not, I plead you, get caught up with society their expectations and rules that you miss an opportunity for reckless abandonment in someone else's heart.
Thus done and said on this day 2nd November 2016 - Soul'O'
Saturday, January 16, 2016
I now know...
I now know a "Healer" and someone who holds the secret to "Eternal Joy"
Pretty neat don't you think ?
Life can through a curve ball at anytime that you least expect it and purely through trial and error we navigate to safety time and time again, and as soon as this is done without expectation of reward in any manner we break the bonds of assumption and ego. That frees up the mind to enjoy and explore to our hearts content.
Thanks a mill.
Hugs n all to ya
Friday, January 15, 2016
From time to time in life you get to meet people that unknowingly influence your life to an extent far more than they could ever perceive. I liken it to ships passing in the night. You are both on the same course and yet have your own paths to follow. It is a mutual respect, understanding and love (un-expressed) that you recognise from times gone by.
There is no real explanation but a kindred spirit is recognised and explored. I say smile, laugh and explore because these passing's are rare and are treasured beyond measure. Not age, upbringing or heritage bears influence but rather a deep down touch to your core ignites a overflow of the senses.
Explore, Live and Love ...
Monday, January 11, 2016
Officially started again a week ago, and most people returned to work today the 11th January and the roads are full again.
Updates on the news with how many people died on the roads this festive season, the students are already striking on university campuses regarding fees etc. and the financial status of the exchange rates are alarming.
Not one piece of good news, sad I know but that is how media works.
As for me, I am up and running and looking forward to an awesome year filled with challenges and adventures galore. Meeting awesome people and being taught and teaching life's lessons as much as possible. Head up, Back straight & Stomach in.......
Take care and we will chat again soon. I will as ever endeavor to remain writing and WILL make time this year to writing meaningful content and expressing the inner urge as much as possible.
Photography will make a comeback too ... watch this space
Sunday, May 24, 2015
Great news .... www.proxisa.co and www.proximate.co.za are up and running. With great pride and excitement we launched today around 4pm. It has been a relatively long haul from an idea to reality. I am so pleased that we have put together a solid online shop for everyone to peruse and enjoy. The choices of products and pricing will change and expand into a fully fledged power house of covert surveillance, spy cameras and equipment. The gadgets available online are available worldwide.
I do hope you get a chance to check the two sites out, it is a matter of pride and joy. Please send your comments, suggestions and don't be shy, even if you don't like them - honestly let me know what you think as it would be greatly appreciated.
Have a great week ahead and we will chat and catch up soon.
Wednesday, January 21, 2015
Thursday, November 13, 2014
Damn - again it has been awhile. Life is really busy and filled with the mundane from this world and it does seem to be a bit much at times but alas I have an inkling of the truth and thus stay my course.
Just reading back on my history on the block I am surprised that so, so much has happened since I wrote seriously and only one or two posts over the last year.
Well when the mood grips me I will elaborate - just doesn't seem fair or appropriate right now.
will catch up soon...
Friday, October 25, 2013
Damn it has been awhile since I wrote on the blog, but never fear I will pick up the pieces and continue forward shortly.
SO much has happened since Feb and my last entry.
I will keep you informed and resume my ramblings shortly
Take care till then
Tuesday, February 19, 2013
I find it ironic that we have such an abundance of opportunity to live comfortably and at peace within ourselves and with each other yet we are constantly fighting the neighbour. It is a conditioning that is sickening when you consider that the 'civilized' world is out in foreign land killing each other over oil and whatnot and they represent everything we have been taught to aspire to.
It would be so easy and reassuring to wake up in the morning and tend to the fields or voluntarily go to work in the assistance of someone else. You would only work to swop that skill with the skill of the person you were helping. In other words you would be a farmer and a neighbour needed his land to be cleared to build a building of some sorts. You would get your tractor and required equipment and go and help him clear the land for this building. In return he would come across to your side of the world to help build a barn or some such similar building as that would be his expertise.
Could you just imagine the lifestyle were one fellow human assists another because they can, have the time and are willing to share. We would have a world where people greeted, where people assisted a struggling member and he in turn would reciprocate with whatever he could as and when he could. We would visit the farmer for groceries, fruit and milk products. Visit the hardware for building assistance etcetera. BUT IT WOULD FAIL, as humans have ego.
I know there are communities out there that do live like this and in Israel I worked on a 'Moshav' Moshav 'Idan' in the Negev desert which is a community farming project where everyone shares the cost of equipment and the use thereof. They also share in the community profits from their farming with each farmer growing something different in order to support the community and others farming for profit at the markets. I was employed as a casual worker and even though I did not get to the administrative or management side of the farm it seemed to me that it worked well. Whether or not they still exist and are running peacefully I am not sure.
We have an abundance of water, fertile land, and seed to feed the world yet we spend our entire lives fighting over money, power and possessions. It would be great if these communities could set up and use the unemployed, the elderly who by the way have an immense knowledge and understanding. It would also give the community a sense of belonging, reward and enrichment that would not otherwise be found in this world today. Maybe this would be my retirement objective. Find such a community and settle down and do a honest days work and be rewarded with a healthy home cooked meal and a chance to sit and admire the sunset. Retire to a comfortable bed and sleep as if I deserved it.
Sad, really, really sad that the world chases us from kindergarten stage right through to retirement age with the benchmark in life being what you own, how much it is worth and judgement comes on how successful the world percieves you to be.
Enough rambling from me.
Saturday, February 9, 2013
I have been asked to comment on Post Traumatic Stress Disorder, and the following ramblings are my take on it...
I must at this juncture let you know that I have no formal 'educated' background with respect to PTSD I have never studied the subject or had any association with anyone suffering from PTSD excepting myself, I am purely relating my own personal experiences and it is a homegrown approach to a subject that can and does get very complicated.
The time it has taken me to get to this is close on 26 or years now and as strange as it seems it is never something that you actually get right or manage to handle correctly. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder is a 'very' real set of issues and afflictions but it is not restricted or only relating to military veterans, even though it was military that popularized the 'PTSD' catch phrase. Anyone who suffers a traumatic experience 'could' and I specifically use the word 'could' suffer from PTSD. Everyone suffers trauma differently and the consequences of addressing it or not needs to be acknowledged and recognized.
If you ask me what is PTSD I would be hard pressed to give you an accurate clinical explanation or for that matter plot out a set of occurrences that would either prove or disprove the existence of PTSD. All I can relate is that there are general symptoms that affect me that are very difficult to pin down. At this stage I think I should start at the very beginning.
Going through a traumatic experience gives your mind a duty to perform and a set of rules to adhere to and they all stem from self preservation. Your mind seems to have an uncanny ability to shut down during a time of extreme stress and it shuts down in order to preserve and survive the threat irrespective of its origin. I am not going to speculate or try and draw parallel experiences here as I have only three or four to work on that I have personally experienced. Your body does the same thing under extreme stress as it closes down most of the outer extremities and rushes blood to all the vital organs in order to keep them as preserved as possible during an "attack". Your mind remains completely receptive to any and everything happening during this period. I can't stress this enough. Your senses will collect a vast amount of information during this time that you will most likely be oblivious to for years after the incident.
Everything your eyes see, ears hear, nose smells, body experiences such as temperature, wind, clothing texture all gets imbedded into memory somewhere and is stored for recall at a later stage. You will not 'know' this on the surface but your instinct will definitely use that experience at a later stage in a similar set of circumstances as it knows it could be personal survival time again. The reason military personnel seem to suffer PTSD to a larger extent than civilians is the 'length' of time that they are exposed to the threat or even the potential threat that they face on a daily, weekly, monthly basis. It is an exposure that can become unnaturally long and difficult to endure. It is endured because of training, circumstances and the simple fact that they can not just walk off a battle field and essentially abandon their fellow soldiers.Please do not take the learned doctors pretty pictures that it can be likened to a football team on tour and they have to watch out for each other. The one's consequence is 'lost' and the other one's consequence is 'dead' Acknowledge it or not there is no greater pressure to live with constantly than the fear of loosing a close friend because you were negligent, scared or not prepared.
In order to maintain this state of readiness and anticipation you condition yourself to be on high alert and believe you me when I say you can achieve this alert stage and sleep at the same time. Many a time we as a group faced threats that materialized in a thick African bush environment in the dark of night and at least eighty percent of personnel woke at the slightest hint of trouble and were battle ready in under a minute. I don't know if this is going into too much detail, but because this is essentially reading that I hope will reach PTSD sufferers, I will elaborate a little further.
Under 'battle' conditions every single noise, image, smell or movement is suspect. If you understand the terror one faces advancing on a position that is known to have in excess of thirty tanks dug in to defend a regiment of foot soldiers you may understand what I am getting at here. This territory is new to you and they have been here preparing their defenses for two weeks, and you know they know you are coming. During this advance you hear the 'whining' sound bullets make as they pass you by and the realization dawns on you that those bullets are from snipers but you are unable to hide in your vehicle turret as you need to stand with your torso extended outside the turret and direct your driver carefully through a maze of trenches and traps to get within firing distance of these tanks. Now contemplate the fact that you did this two or three times a week for several months. I can in graphic detail tell you what and where the vehicles stood, their turret directions and I can clearly describe to you the color of the uniforms the 'enemy' were wearing and if I could draw I would give you a accurate drawing of a mug shot of the persons face. It would unfortunately either be an expression of anger but most often it was an expression of terror that is etched into my mind.
But enough of the details. Essentially your mind registers the threats and believe you me there are many and records them for retrieval later. Now one such stressful situation is possibly easier to handle but PTSD in soldiers is more apparent because they spend months under these circumstances and face such situations two or three times a week. It got to a stage that we would stroll through a target area with mortars raining down around us and you wouldn't care. Very few people realize how far you have to be pushed not to care whether you lived or died. You were just so sick to death of the stress and tension that your mind has now gone beyond self preservation and snapped over into the 'I don't give a damn' mode.
Now this is where we get into the PTSD that matters. For you see once you have reached a stage where you don't care you start running on adrenalin alone and your survival is not up to your mind or for that matter your instinct but training and the will to protect those that you lead. The responsibility of leading or following is immense and this keeps you going. Every single act after this advanced stage of "How bad can it get?" pales in significance. My brother and I have a saying that when life gets us down and we seem to loose control of work or home life or we are simply taking strain in the civilian world, we jokingly comment that "At least no-one is shooting at us" And you know the honest truth 'is' just that real.
No matter what is thrown at us and no matter how difficult life gets "At least no-one is shooting at us." always comes out and makes us relax enough to spread a bit of light onto 'our' reality. Adjusting to 'normal' life is so difficult for people that have been through a traumatic episode, and this is simply because they have experienced or seen things that are so far beyond normal that very little else in life holds their attention. This is not to say that they obsess about their experience necessarily but rather that little or no importance is placed on their current set of circumstances.
A persons attention span diminishes dramatically with most spheres of our lives. I have for example moved apartments or home in excess of twenty times since the military. I have held thirteen jobs in that time, the longest period being nine years. I have had a string of relationships, of which two, one for close on fifteen years and the second more recently of over four years where I seriously attempted to settle down and live a homesteaders lifestyle. These did not work out. Now I do have very valid points as to why they did not work out but that at this stage is elementary to the discussion. The fact is that it is very difficult for me to be satisfied in this world. Nothing is too my standard and when I make a conscious effort to lower our expectations I land up with the very short end of the stick. My expectation and deal with the world is and was during those periods of my life, to be loved unconditionally. I would change into anything you wanted me to be but when i got home all I wanted was to be loved without reserve, without judgment and especially without criticism. Now unfortunately that does not seem to be the way of the world and alas I shuffle on alone.
Having been pushed to the limits psychologically and physically for such a long period of time means we fully understand our limits and abilities. We would often be pushed to the limit physically and your body would react by emptying its stomach. But now keeping in mind that you are unable to stop but are forced to carry on because you have other people to think about so you force yourself on. you are forced to control the shakes and the shivers and maddening desire to give up. You find that your body has reserves as yet undiscovered and you get a second wind. Everything is fine at this stage and you are feeling invincible because even though your stomach has done its thing the shivering and shaking has stopped and the clarity of thought has returned with a brilliant sharpness things change again and after a few more hours things get a whole lot worse. Disorientation sets in and hallucinations become a problem and eventually your body either levels out and maintains this half awake consciousness or your body shuts down completely and goes into shock. You have now rendered yourself pretty much useless and your body will remain in a shut down state in order to both preserve vital functions and to start rebuilding the energy and mental stability platforms.
I digress, let me return to the final decision. The limit your mind and body set itself to give up is death. When you reach a stage where you literally couldn't care whether you lived or died psychologically a barrier or boundary in your mind is shattered and you enter a whole new sphere of mental exploration. This also happens to groups of people under battle conditions where they are so angry, emotional, stressed for a myriad of reasons that they collectively move with one purpose. An example of this was we were attacked by Mig aircraft whilst traveling one morning and we were traveling when we shouldn't have been and got spotted by the 'other' side and they attacked.
The chaos that ensued is all a little jumbled in the mind but safe is to say there are four or five measurable incidents from that morning, one, I got knocked off the ratel (military vehicle) I was standing on, landing on an ammunition case and injuring my back quiet badly. I recall running to the vehicle that had been hit call sign 33C. The dust, smoke, heat and screams drove me into a frenzy. Everything gets a bit blurred when you are running on adrenalin. I located the driver inside the vehicle all bloodied and limp. His name was De Jager and I was unsure as what to do, move him or not to move him his injuries were extensive. Just then the ammunition started exploding around us and I dragged him out into the open. Roderick came in to help me move him far enough from the vehicle. I could still hear someone screaming so I went back into the vehicle. The heat was unbearable and the acrid smoke intense enough to burn the eyes. I could not find Gary and crawled further into the vehicle. Just then someone was pulling at my leg and I struck out at them, and returned further into the chaos, I had to find Gary. The explosions had by this stage deafened me completely and the person pulling me out was a sergeant from the support services. He was shouting at me but I could not make out a word he was saying. I had at this stage not comprehended that I had lost my hearing. On my third re-entry he dragged me out forcibly and it was then that they pointed out that Gary had been found. It was this action that possibly saved my life as the vehicle started shaking as the 90mm ammunition really started popping. Gary had lost his lower leg but he was alive. I assisted Dion and Roderick remove De Jager to a safe distance and all i can remember was the silence and smell of burnt flesh. No-one addressed me directly as they thought I had lost it. Admittedly I assumed I had too as everything was slow motion and not a sound to be heard. I still could not understand that I was deaf and no matter how much people shouted at me I could not comprehend what they were on about. I went looking for and found my crew scattered around the site and after ensuring they were OK and safe I remember returning to the medic station to check on Frikkie. The image I have is his head sideways on my leg and lap lying face down and I was swatting flies that covered his entire head, back and legs was one dark patch which I initially assumed was blood but it was in fact flies. I distinctly remember he was drastically loosing blood and the medics would not allow me to donate blood even though I am 'O Neg' (meaning I can give blood safely to any blood group) as they thought I was in too much shock. Unfortunately after eight or nine hours struggle and several injections of morphine he passed away. I had already returned to my vehicle by that stage.
The main reason for this retelling is that the next time we were in a similar situation I ignored the danger as many of us did, and walked through a target area with mortar bombs falling with little or no respect for my own life - something inside died with De Jager and till this day there is a part of me that was left in that burnt out Ratel.
Now after reading this, possibly imagined what that chaos and stress and total misery was like, then you are now expected to immediately transport yourself into a coffee shop in the center of the city. Where ever you find yourself right now. Keeping those emotions, smells, fears, and terror from battle and literally open your eyes and you are in the city drinking coffee. You desperately want to dive under the table for cover. A vehicle is traveling past on the road, usually a VW beetle and it backfires.
I cannot express to you the jolt and emotional storm that hits you feels like. You immediately look for your firearm that was close at hand and no longer is. You are planning escape routes, at the same time you are analysing threats instinctively. Your girlfriend or wife turns to you and says to you that you are ignoring her and you seem distracted. You need to bury those instinctive reactions within a second or two and converse with others as if you had been day dreaming which was and has always been my excuse.
Please understand that it is not always like this. When things are going well your body and mind mask and dampen down anything up to ninety percent of this reaction which, never really leaves you by the way. Well twenty six odd years on and I am still on the lookout for threats and danger spots in the shadows. Whether I have cultivated this seemingly paranoid state because of PTSD or not, I am unsure, but it remains a part of me till this day. The problem with this is that it creeps up on you and when your system is physically down or your emotional state is really low, these paranoid tendencies creep up on you and if not recognised and dealt with immediately they become an obsession and the tendency to become depressed and wallow in self pity is very strong indeed.
Now a mind that has stored and buried all those images, smells, sounds and feeling from all those years ago recognised some sort of a connection and lets you have one of a few reminders, the smell maybe, or a vision of a battle lived through or even a face and expression that reminded you of someone you knew. Or for that matter you stumble upon something on the internet that relates to your activity up there and a massive chunk of memory comes back to you. You 'must' deal with this memory and not bury it again. Your mind twenty six years on will release bits and pieces of the trauma to you to deal with.
My logic here is that the mind knows that you are unable to deal with the full trauma so it selectively releases information to you to deal with over a span of a couple of years. Yes you could become obsessed and dig it all up yourself but that would only be if you did it yourself and it would require a conscious effort.
this is all becoming a little long winded so I will close off here and carry on in the near future...
*focus on something greater than yourself
I seemed to have got a little carried away on the previous entry regarding PTSD but to close that conversation off, I want you to know this. PTSD is manageable and if the loved ones around you are aware and caring to your needs they can support greatly 'BUT' you will manage fine without that support as many of us have.
I attribute my seemingly decent result to the fact that I have managed to to focus on items greater than myself. Now I am no happy clapper but my focus has been spiritual of sorts. I acknowledge the fact that a 'entity' more powerful than ourselves exists and we are tuned to a vibration that we have yet to fully grasp and understand as humans. Nature is far more in tune with this force than we are and it is to this higher force and understanding that I focus.
Now in order to effectively combat PTSD you have to see yourself as a piece of a puzzle so to speak. The world does not revolve around you and even though you are the most important person in this world of yours it does not belong to you. You can NOT go around hating the people that sent you to war. You can not hate the education system that failed you and forced you into the belief that war was manly and patriotic etcetera Do not even think of blaming your parents for allowing this to happen to you at the tender age of eighteen or nineteen years old.
Feel free to acknowledge the fact that the entire system sucks and let you down. You can lament this fact with justification for hours and hours, damn they have created organizations that point fingers at the perpetrators, 'BUT' I ask you to what purpose. If you feel good blaming the rest of the world then, that is what you should do. But again I suggest that you do not go out of the house with this chip on your shoulder thinking the world owes you. Truth be told they do! They owe us big time considering they took a nineteen year old boy and screwed with his head, his morals and his entire balance of his life to be lived.
But realistically that pat on the back we all expected when we got home and never got does not exist. The rest of the world hide their heads in shame for what they allowed to happen but amazingly still do it today. Nobody wants to talk about it and very few people do. Once possibly twice a loved one has pushed me for information regarding what we did up there, if find myself starting at the most basic level of explanation and they lose interest or do not want to know anything further because you see we live with it every day and it is not shocking to us in the least. It is beyond their grasp and think we are trying to shock them. One classic statement I heard was that I watch too many movies and my imagination has run wild. For obvious reasons my attempt at explanation ended right there.
If you want someone to put their arm around you and sympathize then, best you seek out a counselor whom you pay to listen to you. It is as simple as that, you tell them that you expect sympathy and they will give it to you. Another alternative is to seek out a fellow comrade that stood next to you during the battles or at least someone who has been there. The counselor may or may not understand but that does not really matter as your greatest need is to explain what you did. Counselors do wonderful work and are able to give you the tools on how to manage your anger, social skills and a myriad of other topics. As for family, friends and strangers I do not believe I have the right to dump all this baggage onto someone else so I never have.
Please keep in mind that this is 'my' experiences and opinions and has nothing to do with an educated or scholars approach to PTSD. So if it is understandable to you then great if it is not then carry on looking. I do believe that each persons path is unique and based on your history, your current circumstances and your personality, these will determine the best route for you. Never expect a handout.
I have chosen one decision making principle in my life that is greater than myself, and that I have applied to every single decision I have made since the military 'wake up' I went through. And the question I ask myself every single time I need to make a call about a direction at work or in a relationship or for that matter a moral judgement that needs to be addressed I ask myself this...
If my choice takes me closer to God realisation then I will make that decision without hesitation. If the decision takes me further away from that goal it is dismissed without a second thought. This process of decision making will never allow me to go to war ever again, I will never be able to hurt anyone if using this decision process correctly and honestly. PTSD gave me huge anger issues and turning to violence was just a mere memory away and it was on tap to use 24/7. By applying my decision process honestly and consistently the majority of those problems faded.
Please do not be fooled as it is not an easy process but it becomes a habit and instinctive which allows you no second guessing as to the correct path to follow. I still live with PTSD with respect to the memories, the constant vigilance and at times paranoidal tendencies to threats perceived or real but this I can live with. I have managed to side step countless scenario's where the outcome would have been violent and aggressive purely because of this vigilance and attitude towards life.
So in closing my one overriding thought is this...
Seek out something that is greater than yourself and respect it, cherish it and nurture yourself back into a whole person with thoughts and original ideas. Don't spend a lifetime trying to escape something that is uniquely yours. Manage it and move on, as it is very, very easy to fall into the trap of self pity. I managed to step back into myself prior to the trauma and my sincere wish is that you manage to do the same...
Sunday, February 3, 2013
It is a wondrous time in ones life when you find time to reflect. It is a soul searching that is rare and often overlooked as day dreaming and wasteful. But I dare to differ for the simple reason that when you have the opportunity it presents a realism that is not found in the day to day rough and tumble of normal life. We tend to get so busy with our lives that more often than not we do not see the obvious or for that matter the 'souls' signals for change and turns in the road ahead. We blast through these intersections in what seems a blind determination to keep up, beat or conquer the opposition. This opposition is represented by societies ideals and projections. It has very little to do with what we aim for or use as benchmarks. We think we need to be successful, we constantly think that we are not successful and lacking the 'right stuff' and thus continue to blunder down a path that leads to...? Do we even know where we are going? And who do we measure ourselves against? who or what made them the benchmark.
Admittedly the older you get the more selective you become about who you wish to emulate but it is not so much that you become more selective but rather you have fewer choices due to a myriad of experiences and lessons you have been exposed to. Added to this, it seems that the caliber of role models has deminished considerably over the same period of time. As an example I was trolling the internet recently to find quotes and speeches from the likes of Churchill, Rooseveldt and leading statesmen of our time and who pops up in the search for quotable quotes, none other than 'Homer Simpson' Yes you read correctly Homer Simpson a cartoon character of dubvious intelect (sorry the character is down right dumb) but the point is he is a cartoon character and people treat him as a living being and a quotable one at that. When you start basing your inspiration on a cartoon character them I am not surprised that the current final school passing grade is 30%. How scarey is that folks. If you know 30% of your exams questions and tests correct you are deemed an educated person and eligible for employment or university in South Africa.
Me; "Hello Doctor, I have this head that fell of a friend of mine and we were wondering could you help us put it back on? " Doctor; " Ooh sorry I fell asleep in the head joining body class of 2012, but tell me when last did he sneeze?, because it could be flu. There is a lot of that going around now"
PLEASE FOLKS !!! dont let this world 'DUMB YOU DOWN'
TV games are not real and cartoon characters DO NOT HAVE CHARACTER - find the writer, meet him or her, read their biography and quote him directly if they measure up to your ideals but please don't go about quoting a figment of their imagination and what seems to be a dumb one at that...
Am I ranting here? Me thinks so ...
Enough they cried ...
Saturday, February 2, 2013
Here we are, and I discover that much of one's identity falls away when you constantly keep the company of others. We are all aspiring to be recognised and or accepted. We put on a facade and a show that encourages us to be more than we are or more of what the people around us assume or expect us to be.
This is not a bad thing mind you, but it does distract from the 'me' or 'I' that constantly reminds us of what we want to be. It all gets sidelined by most, due to family commitments and or income related activity. You need to earn a salary to survive and keep up with this 'normal' world. It is only normal by the 'current' human understanding of the lifestyle that shows success and indulges the senses in a lavish love affair with material objects.
The only reason I bring this up is that due to recent changes in my lifestyle I have investigated my standing in life and my relationships with parents, partners, friends, colleagues and work related encounters. I have for the better part pressurized myself to conform to the mould that I am expected to originate from. Ooh, you are a man you should... Your dress code for work should be ... the vehicle you drive should have ... To be successful you must do ... Your hairstyle does not conform to societies acceptable standards...
No one seems to realise that they are both victim and perpetrator to this skewed sense of what life should be. Everyone is guilty and please note, I definitely include myself in this as this is what sparked this note to myself. For you see very few people live their lives for their own purpose. What I am getting at here is that people are all subjects of circumstance. They grew up in a certain definable set of standards and circumstances and their focus and visions of the future extend to their concept of the limit. Very few realise that there is no limit. Limit is the same as time, it is a human standard that has been defined by the countless billions before us and no one seems to realise that the reason our ancestors grew so tall or lived so long is because they were not conditioned to do any different.
When your day consisted of hunting and living in a cave, how high on your agenda was what you would be doing next Thursday at 12h00, Ooh, Hang on, what is next week and better still what the hell is Thursday? Did they consider and count years? At most seasons were the norm and day and night obviously. Did it matter that you were 101 years old or 88 years old, nobody knew or particularly cared. I met woman up in Angola that were well over a hundred years old, still swinging a hoe in the fields daily. Sure they were not as agile as the younger folks but you show me a westerner and socialite that can still swing a hoe over her head and into a field to plant seed for the new crop.
We are brainwashed from a early age as to what is acceptable and what is not. But I challenge the system by asking who set the rules in the first place. Consider how successful we all would be in business if we worked at our personally chosen career. One without influence and what I am getting to here is that if you want to be a farmer then that is exactly what you should do. You want to be a sailor then that is exactly what you should do. If you love being creative then go out and find the job that best suits your desire. I was once told at a very young age that writing, photography and sports like golf and soccer what not proper jobs and certainly not a career path. Ernie Els cleared thirty four million rands last year as a golfer. I wonder how Wilbur Smith lives his 'very' comfortable lifestyle. And then as a photographer some are being paid anything up to twenty thousand dollars for a weeks work.
It is such a pity that we have allowed ourselves to fall into the trap of acceptance. Acceptance of an entire social structure that dominates and controls every facet of our lives. They determine the time you get up, what you eat, wear, drive and how many hours you have to work to survive a pitiful lifestyle. We should all be millionaires in our own right and I am not referring to money in the bank I am talking about lifestyle and contentment with respect to our achievements and current status in life.
I am at the stage where I am "Stepping back into myself" with respect to ideals, ambitions and desires. I aim to break these pathetic avenues society chases us down, and slowly change my existence around to a far more pleasant enjoyable lifestyle.
Thursday, January 31, 2013
Monday, October 22, 2012
Written awhile back but never published here ... till now
How is it that we get caught up in life so quickly, and for that matter how is it that we get involved so deeply. The few that know, realise that we have all been around the block a few times in our lives and that is experience yes, but also reflects character and bearing. We wear it like body armour, eager to show off our battle scars whenever someone gets close enough to read or show interest. For some inexplicable reason, I find myself removing myself from contact, removing my involvement with 'the world' yet here i am writing a public notice?
I have been exposed to the best and worst in life and find myself striving for something more, something with as eager an attitude as i seem to have. I find that i have so much to share, so much to explore and again so much that i still need to get done.... The question that fills my head right now is this; does anyone care ??? I mean people write and people tell me that they want this or that and i listen and can appreciate where they are and on most occasions have some insight or have experienced something similar which allows me comment inteligently and more often than not with conviction and surety that eases many people... Are we bound to this world to use and abuse? Strange question i know but i am concerned that i may be going through life with this entirely false hope that there is a human reason to all that goes on around us. I have heard it said that we are not humans having a spiritual experience but rather spiritual beings having a human experience. If that be so then i will bear with anything life throws at me. My human side hates it with a passion but i firmly believe that i grow spiritually every time i go through a tough patch. This patch is all of twelve hours old but it shakes my belief and thought process into utter dissaray and i hate the helpless feeling that goes with it. It brings everything i have hoped for and everything i have experienced over the recent few months into question...
Am i being paranoid? Am i justified in my concernes or am i just a hopeless romantic that let feelings cloud my usually level approach to such affairs of the heart. Am i doomed to go through this loop time and time again. Do other people go through similar fears and concerns, or is it a simple matter of too much attention given to too little a subject. Affairs of the heart are no small matter to me and paranoid or not they strike to the core when doubt creeps in. I would hate to close my heart to outsiders again for any period of time but if my mind continues this endless route of self examination or doubt then it will drive me crazy. I find myself doubting my own value.... I have had enough of that in my short lifetime. So i am faced with a scenario where i 'assumed' i had attained a certain level within someones heart and reveled in the ecstacy i felt. Now not a word has passed since an sms recieved and find myself on the edge of my seat with concern, worry and a certain apprehension as to the cause of the sms. And yes a quick call would solve a lot and possibly ease this mindless track i am on. But herein lies the dillema, as the next obvious step would be to recieve a call of explanation or at least an sms of reasurance that all is ok.
Again i ask, am i expecting too much? The answer to that is irrelevant if the heart is not in the same sphere or space as mine and is it my imagination or my longing that assumed hers was in the same space? I find that i imagine a dreadful personal tragedy may have fallen upon her, or an 'ex' that she has been waiting for has returned unexpectadly. At this stage it is partly a wasted excercise and i will no doubt learn the truth over the next few days. Either way i am rattled...
My life two weeks ago was full, the sun shone brighter, the soft was softer, the days shorter and everyone had a smile on their face, or so it seemed. Now after my love has been lost, people seem to be grumpy and everyone wants a fight. Strangers push you from side to side and no one will give you the gap to relax and enjoy what you can out of a day. Business has taken a dive and the oddest things have gone wrong or just not materialised at all. I have gotten sick for the first time in years and what has always been a two or three hour sickness has lasted four days now with no let up.
That leads to my question; are we of this world or is the world a part of us. If my attitude whilst in love could make everything so right and the unexpected change in my love life could bring about all this negativity, then surely it is of my own doing? What I mean by this is or would it not be true to say that your 'happiness' is then a state of mind. If we are a part of this world ie; the world controls us, then we would have no effect on the outcome whatsoever. But on the other hand if the world was a part of us ie; under our control then surely my recent experiences show that when I am positive the world is positive and when I am down and emotionally strained or depressed then everything appears to be going wrong, as it has over the last week.
So it would then be fair to say, If my emotional state determines my success or failure at work, or success or failure of a meal (as I have lost my appetite completely) or for that matter having three friends turn their back on you simultaniously, then surely it should all go right if I change my attitude towards failure.
It is definately a question worth exploring and we will see where I lost my positivity and 'lust' for life. But first thing is first, I have a "flu" bugs ass I need to kick....
I thought I would put pen to paper and compose a ...
Hahahahaha - please do not take this literally ...lol... just a bit of fun, thats all...
Consider it a bit of country and western ...
- - - - - - - - - - - - - - - - -
Many a time, I have spent wondering about yonder,
I have spent a lifetime wandering there, yet still find a road worth traveling
The sun blazes down, the moon shines bright, ooh I wish I could take flight
on a ship that that floats that way.
Forgive me for the sorrow, forgive me for the pain but I hang my head not in shame, for
it is a journey of discovery, one of time spent dancing with the devil, trading places with the saints.
With a heart full of dreams and a thought a plenty I find myself in the company of travelers.
If I died today along the trail, I would have no regrets and no wishes but that of
a lonesome trip for a soul that traded with the winds.
I could die explaining my ego, I could die explaining my past but truth be told it would be my last. I have traveled across the plains, I rode the trails, heard the call of a panther and grunted against a bear. The sorrows these bought are triumphs alone.
Skeletons abound for the weary traveler, pull in at the inn and chase the dust with a whiskey as the demons bang away at the door. There are none to save you and none to crave you but never fear for they are trapped within your mind and will clear with the rising sun.
Sweet dreams are long time gone as the memories drift into the outback yonder, along with your 'honey suckle' sweetheart. It is morning and the light will shine, you awake to get a feel of the day, sitting along a river and blessing your course for the trail and your direction to ride.
There is a fire out front that demands acceptance for its warmth, there is a wind in your face that becons you on. You tell me what it means and I will show you the truth. There is nothing but a blue sky smiling down at me.
I know the trail must end, for it has been a full life. An adventure strong enough for retelling in script and a warning to those that wish to follow. It comes in a way that could not be imagined, in a way that can not be told, but is as surely just as real.
So bow your head not in prayer when my time has passed but rather bow it in reverance for the time you still need to travel the trail. Pick up your hat, dust off the clothing, and saddle your pony for the trail is calling and the heart will surely grow fonder.
- Hahahahaha yeah right ...lol...
Wednesday, May 2, 2012
Sunday, March 18, 2012
Sunday, March 27, 2011
Tuesday, February 1, 2011
I find it both strange and invigorating to find myself surrounded by beautiful people. Their beauty is individual and inspiring and combined they make me feel better about myself. I want to automatically ‘be more’ if you hear what I am saying. It is so easy to fall into the trap of dogma and depression that if you don’t regularly take stock of your situation, you may find yourself on the wrong side of the tracks.
My family, for example is filled with ‘alpha’ personalities, with respect to their approach to life and the adventurers spirit. We have all travelled and would do so again at the drop of a hat and in so doing amass another spirited adventure tale that will be repeated at any occasion and to anyone who is willing to hear it “again”
I secretly fear that it may be arrogance or ego that motivates us to repeat them but ‘Damn’ we have fun and the tales are all based on actual events. So I dare not exclude my tales, for the enjoyment is both in the telling and in the rekindling of that spirit we often lack due to our responsibilities and work etc. I am currently bogged down and treading water has become an Olympic sport in my life but I do have land in sight and am slowly making headway.
I miss the old days, you remember them. Those days filled with endless hours sitting around a camp fire listening to the frontiersmen telling us tales of their adventures. Grandpa was there sitting with a blanket over his knees, coaxing his pipe to life, a flurry of smoke every now and again wafting over everyone’s head. He always had this amused look on his face when he would think of the old days. He would smooth down his moustache before starting a story and it always started with the words “I remember a time when…” We would sit spellbound and he would carry us off into the night with stories of war, or his days as a miner. Adventures he lived through on horseback and then the sweet love of his life would always feature prominently.
There was of course the camp fires surrounded by desert were weary travellers would hold up for a day or two and the stories of their travels to far off exotic lands would ignite our imagination and lust for the open road again. The nomads would arrive in groups of four or five and water their animals before settling down to a meal. I can still smell the dust of the roads they had just travelled and remember the struggle to distinguish their accents. Over yonder always sounded better than around the corner and beyond that sea was always more enticing than across the water.
Why do we not relive these experiences more often, and how is it that we have lost that comradeship that bound all weary travelers to a single meal instantly. I remember coming back from the crusades on those cold winter nights, the skins I wore hung wet and heavy across my shoulders. The sword dull with a mixture of blood and dirt from battle. Triumph was soon a matter of the past when a meal and a soft bed where offered. I can distinctly recall the look on those faces as we neared the campsite. From being slumped over the pommel from exhaustion to riding tall as victors.
Expressions of faith and fairytales were played by actors on a stage, which often took place at the drop of a hat. People would dress up and carry their picnics with them to sit on the balconies or on the lawn surrounding the stage to drift off into a land of intrigue and adventure. Villains’ were bad and the hero’s always astride a white steed. Damsels were coy and reserved and gentlemen were gentlemen through and through.
Those were the days, and they dulled over the years into obscurity and humanity has swopped it for what? Fast cars, fast food and even faster women have become the norm. We as a society need to sit still, without the phones, televisions, and gadgets to contemplate life for what it was, has become and will be in the future. We seem to have lost the ‘human touch’ which is a sad thought. Everyone for themselves which goes against the laws of nature but gratification of our senses seems to be the order of the day now.
I for one will invest in a dining room table, big enough to fit twelve people or more, situated in an open room with a natural fireplace for those cold winter nights. I may even learn to play the piano and have that situated in the same room. I will swop the tungsten and florescent light bulbs for soft candle glow and oil lamps will serve more than a decorative purpose. There will be a comfortable relaxed and gracious air to the occasion and manners and respect will be in place.
I know I am babbling again but I so miss the authentic air of yesteryear that I do think we should pay more attention to being human and less attention to being ‘materialistic gratification addicts’
Thus done and said, on the 1st day of February in the year of our good Lord 2011
Monday, January 31, 2011
I ask you ! Can you live with your current set of circumstances be it home, social, work or any kind of situation you may find yourself in? If your answer is 'Yes' then move on for this will be nothing but waffling to you. But if it is 'NO' then hang around for I dare to speak out and lay my claim and name to the following statement...
"You are only where you are in life, through your own actions and activities. "
Dare not! lay blame at another's feet for your situation or predicament, as you have taken the steps to get where you are today. Up until the age of seven you learn and have learnt all there is to learn about yourself, as in character, preferences, taste and so on. Sure they change, but there is nothing more that your parents can teach you that you are not able to teach yourself.
So what have 'you' done thus far? Are you proud of who you are, can you with confidence step out and lay your claim to a piece of the world and call it your own? If not, dare I ask why and what are you doing that limits your actions and activity, for that is your starting point.
Do you want to change? Dare you challenge this life as an individual or are you content to be a sheep. No single body or entity alive or dead for that matter can tell you what you may and may not be. I say, take what you want and be damned the rest, for until you challenge this life it will control you and chase you into a hole in the ground so deep that you will need an excavator to get yourself out. All life does to us, is control, and manipulate us into a case of the blind following the blind.
ONE SIMPLE TEST...
When last did you come up with an original idea or thought? Something that you can relate to, something that makes people listen when discussed or something that is uniquely yours?
Today? Yesterday? Last week? Last year? EVER???
Think about it... Trust me it is worth thinking about.
DO NOT SETTLE FOR SECOND BEST !!!
Take charge, challenge your predicaments and consciously set sail in a direction you want to go, not where the wind takes you along with all the rest.
I find it strange that at forty four odd years old I have discovered that getting to know yourself is critical in one's own development. Here I am in JHB, possibly the least exciting city in the country for me at this time, and being faced with a myriad of issues and obstacles I can feel the buildup of tension, the uneasiness that always accompanies change. I honestly look forward to it and again having been through these changes before I fully realise what it takes.
Getting the whole process going is the worst. I have sufficient frustration built up now to tackle the tasks at hand and will, as per my previous blog notes, conquer all in one fell swoop.
"Molon Labe" 'ye heathen lot - darest you! to even attempt getting the upper hand. Fear me, for I shall strike fear into your belly and both shatter and conquer your pathetic attempts at control.
I have a mission and a cause, a just one at that, so starting the 1st February 2011, I regain control and stake my claim.
"THIS IS MY TURF" so just back OFF...