The Past and The Future
11-01. General. I would like to close with a few thoughts on the past and offer hope for the future.
The long process of writing this manual has led me to rethink many aspects of my life. I have spent some time wondering what I would have done, where I would have gone, and who I would have met, had I not gone to Vietnam. I was 21 years old. I had already been married for 3 years, had two sons and my wife was 5 months pregnant with our third child when I left home for Vietnam. I was scared and excited at the same time.
During the first few months I was in Vietnam I thought many times of shooting myself, in some non essential part, so I could get the hell away from that hot, miserable place. I do not remember thinking about whether the war was right or wrong, I only thought about getting home.
When I did get home there was no one to talk to about what had happened. The general community called us baby killers. Neither my parents nor my wife asked me any questions then, nor have they ever asked about what we did. Were they ashamed of my actions or concerned for my feelings? My parents can not ask me now; they are gone. My wife, the same one I had back then, has never wanted to know. How does that make me feel? How does it make you feel? Most of you went through the same thing.
You will never be welcomed home, except by your brothers, but you can shed some of the mental baggage by coming to terms with human nature.
Page last updated 06-01