TOMATO PLANTS |
November 15, 2006
Name: SPC Jami Gibbs
Posting date: 11/15/06
Returned from: Iraq
Milblog url: americanbabble.com
Email: [email protected]
I think my mind has definitely hit the "rough patch". I've never been one to know what depression is. Yes, I have always been moody. Yes, some people have described me as an "asshole" (I have no idea why I wrote that in quotations). But I have generally been a very pro-life person. I've always been able to see bad experiences as just something along life's journey. Lately, though, I've been starting to feel this very dark sinking dread. Not having any prior experience with the feeling, I suppose I can only associate it with depression.
I hate feeling sorry for myself. I've been letting myself get into a cycle of feeling self pity, then getting mad at myself for feeling pity, then getting upset that I'm angry that I'm feeling self pity, etc. etc. etc. I think after a week or so I realized that many other people in my unit are feeling the exact same way as I am. They are feeling trapped. They don't know what more to talk about. They can't find anything that will make them truly smile anymore. It's hard for me to describe the stir-crazy feeling because it tends to be so overwhelming.
A couple of weeks ago I noticed a little miracle. Underneath a bench surrounded by sand and concrete was a tomato plant. It was growing in seemingly barren ground. I was astounded. It was over a foot tall and had three little white blooms. I picked a leaf and smelled it, as if my eyes were deceiving me. The telltale aroma of tomato plant was overpowering. I pointed it out to my roommate later, and we stared at it for a minute together in awe.
The next week it wasn't there anymore. Some Iraqi laborers had come by and chopped it down. They were hired to come around our area and pick up trash and pick weeds and such. For some reason I felt a profound sadness for this stupid little plant. I told myself that it didn't really belong there in the first place. It had no place flourishing in this wasteland. And I convinced myself that it wouldn't have survived long in the 100 degree heat anyway. But as it turned out, it had a better chance of surviving mother nature than the hands of a laborer.
Sometimes it's all the little things adding up that have the biggest effect on us. But I'm still grateful that all I'm mourning are tomato plants. I hope it stays that way.