Today, I feel like picking up a weapon

I have been in the role of a combatant, and was in some of the fiercest fighting in Afghanistan and in Iraq, as a US Marine. I have taken life, and destroyed property.

After Iraq, I was seeking a path with heart and compassion, and I enrolled in nursing school. My instructors kept insisting that I should be a physician, if that appealed to me. They practically pushed me through the doors of a very fine university, which had an accelerated program for which they were actively recruiting vets. I was very lucky and grateful.

When I had completed my training, as an orthopedic surgeon, I decided that the best place for me was to work with military people. Today, I am a surgeon in the US Navy, billeted in Afghanistan. I came here from Germany, where I saw plenty of trauma. Here, I am more in the thick of it. Things are either quiet, and somewhat boring, or things are very busy with very long hours of work, with very severely wounded people.

At times, I work 24 hours per day, catching an hour or two of sleep, here and there. Logging onto places like CAF to maintain my sanity, and find some diversion.

After my day, today, I find myself ready to pick up a weapon, and head out into the field. I won’t describe what I have seen, or what I have heard about today, which I am fortunate not to have seen. This is a minor moral crisis for me. I’m furious right now. And, frustrated. I wish my powers to heal were much better.

I don’t really know why I am posting this. I guess I am just venting some rage. I can’t exactly do that with my patients, and doing so with my co-workers would only bring their morale down too.

May God Bless you for your brave service, and may he help you find peace of mind and spirit.

God Bless you. Thanks for your sacrifices to defend America and support our troops. I also work with the U.S Navy supporting the fleet and proud of it. :):thumbsup:

Our Father, Who art in heaven,
Hallowed be Thy Name.
Thy Kingdom come.
Thy Will be done, on earth as it is in Heaven. Give us this day our daily bread.
And forgive us our trespasses,
as we forgive those who trespass against us.
And lead us not into temptation,
but deliver us from evil. Amen.

A prayer to give you strength, hope, and peace of mind.:thumbsup:

On behalf of a grateful nation, I thank you for your service and wish you God’s peace during this Holy season.


Thank you for your service. Tomorrow will be a better day. :rolleyes:

Venting is good.

You don’t really need any advice.

You will be in my prayers today.

Thank you for sharing…

May God bless you with His peace.


I understand your frustration. I was a boatswain’s mate (Iraq Class of 2005) and it was frustrating when you have the ability to put warheads on foreheads and instead you are guarding oil pipelines by day and playing pattycake with Iranians at night.

Soldiers, sailors, airmen, and Marines will volunteer for war because they know people like you will patch them back up when it hits the fan.

Unite your pain with Mother Teresa of Calcuta. She will be able to help you.

I know there are many grateful families out there whose sons and daughters you have served while on military duty. May God continue to bless you in your work and give you the courage and strength to continue on. Mostly, in the end, may He help you find peace while you serve.

Remember that in the end, God will make everything just. :grouphug:
You, and those in your care, are in my prayers.

Holy Mother, please intercede for us.
Hold the sorrowful, strengthen the fearful,
give aid to all needing help or healing,
assist those who are sick, in pain or suffering,
be with those needing peace, console the lonely,
comfort the lost or hopeless, guard the unborn,
pray for those who are dying or who have died,
protect those in danger, guide us from evil,
soften those with hardened hearts,
enlighten those who do not yet see truth;
may all who keep your sacred commemoration
experience the might of your assistance.

is it easier to kill or to heal?
in a perfect world you would be perfect healer but also you wouldn’t be needed. your skills are more needed where you are.
May the Lord lift your heart.

Thank you for your service…I am so VERY grateful. :):):):):):):slight_smile:

We’ve “met” on different threads here recently, but I didn’t know your story…I separated from active duty 40+ years ago, but I think I can begin to understand what you’re going through…know that you are doing God’s work, and take comfort in that…my prayers are with you, my friend.

I would caution in regard of announcing ‘picking up your weapon’ etc. as it may be misconstrued in light of recent news events. I am sure you are referencing returning to active Military duty.

Thankyou for your service to our country. Thankyou for servicing Vets.

Do get some sleep! Sleep deprivation can* indeed* impair judgement and perspective.

I second that!

Yes, me too!

Thank you and I hope you are feeling a little better now.


Epan, I will pray for you today. May the peace of Christ, which surpasses our power to understand, fill your heart and your life.

What can I tell you? Something I’d tell to a knight of the old times: remain within the Sacred Heart of Christ. There is a lot of suffering, and it is a great blessing that you can help ease them. Anger and frustration are quite common when you see what you see and live what you live.

It is also rather common that we direct the anger and frustration towards God, or that we direct it towards our human enemies. However, you are doing your best to help your proximus, your רעי, that is, the nearest person whom is hurt and needs your help.

You know, there is a lot that shines through you and that you are unaware of. You don’t know how many people look at you and see something reflected on you…for a Christian it could be Christ, the divine physician…for someone else, it may be hope…it may be help…it may be the presence a fellow man that drives despair away…you do more healing than you know by your very presence, and in this you draw strength by your human virtues but also by the grace that faith gives you, especially when you experience the need for greater power to heal and help.

As for the struggle you and we and all face in the presence of evil, I have found much to think about in this quote by the fictional Fr. Merrin in a notorious 1973 novel:

I think the demon’s target …] is us . . . the observers . . . …] And I think—I think the point is to make us despair; to reject our own humanity, Damien: to see ourselves as ultimately bestial; as ultimately vile and putrescent; without dignity; ugly; unworthy.

I have heard your entire story in another thread. Thank you for persevering and for treating our troops.

You never know how you will touch someone’s life, even through “failure.”

Put your trust in the Lord.

I will pray for you.

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