I took and aim and let it fly. The impact hit his head with such force it knocked him off his feet and sent his glasses flying. Everyone paused for a second…
“Sir, you can’t pick on the LT that way.” One of the scouts shouted.
“If he’s gonna play, he should have better situational awareness.” I said.
The Lieutenant dusted himself off and headed to the sidelines. Playing dodge-ball with soccer balls can be rough.
There we were. In the middle of the town were set to occupy for the next seven months, as secure as we could be playing a kids game. We were sweating, dirty, and most of all, having the time of our lives.
Let me be clear, we were not out in the open. Actually, we were probably in the most secure outside position we could possible get. At the Grain silo, on the back of the compound, were five overflow pits. They were of durable smooth concrete, had high concrete walls, and no view into the compound.
As the Kiowa Warrior and Apache helicopters did laps around the town, we had the stars align where we could catch a few hours of down time as a complete Troop. Our future home was a few hundred meters away and temporarily occupied by Regimental headquarters. As such, we dropped off their radar and were able to take care of a few administrative tasks, like playing dodgeball.
My tactic for the afternoon was to stand close to the out of bounds and “camouflage” myself with the players that were knocked out. Once the action continued I was essentially forgotten about, and when the target was right, I would unleash the ball I was hiding behind my back. I didn’t mean to hit the LT in the head, but I didn’t mean to miss either.
We carried a fierce attitude from the battlefield to the dodgball pits.
The little bit of break it gave us greatly charged our batteries. We talked about those games for a solid month. The trash talking during and after was tremendous. It perfect timing for all of us mentally and physically.
Looking back, the tremendous up-side of those few hours was the exercise and camaraderie.
Today, I am still struggling to cut down on the meds that are an essential part of my life. I have been exercising steadily and attempting to thwart the need to take them with little success.
After moving back to New York I was exercising and playing lacrosse regularly. It was nice to be back on a team breaking a sweat. I was still anxious and did not look forward to going out, or meeting new people, but I pushed myself and got involved. But, having kids, the team disbanding, breaking my wrist, all derailed my effort to get a part of my life re-established that had always sort of just been there.
So, I am going to make a concerted effort to find a team, and keep working out. (is there competitive Yoga?) I will tackle this medication dependency and grind it down to nothing. For now, my wife and kids will appreciate me being on it.