Terminal Lance #495 “Postpartum”
October 17, 2017
What you have just witnessed here is the birth of a new Angry Facebook Veteran.
Interesting things happen when Marines are away from their own kind for too long. They begin to revert into a primitive idolatry that is normally reserved for moto parents and boots. You can see the beginning signs of this any time an active duty Marine is on leave, where they must make it known to the world that they are in fact Marines (despite the fact that they totally hate it).
It makes sense that it’s usually the biggest assholes you knew on active duty that turn out to be the biggest assholes in their newfound civilianhood. Regardless, the Marine Corps has a way of infecting the minds of even the most normal of people from day one until the day you’re six feet under. You find the Marines you knew that swore up and down they hated every minute of it wearing the most obnoxiously moto gear on their persons and vehicles after they leave, unable to cope with their own identity.
Finding yourself again is often more difficult than just forever claiming the title of Marine. However, you weren’t always a Marine. It took me a long time to remember who I actually was, as the military in general tends to discourage too much independent behavior. The whole point of boot camp and “breaking you down” is to remove your identity and supplant it with one of their own. This is great for Marines on active duty and in the thick of it, but it doesn’t do so many favors for people once they separate.
Veterans often struggle with the transition, but a large part of that is simply answering the question: Who are you? Many have forgotten that they were once a person before they were a Marine.
What do you like to do? What did you do before you enlisted?
These are questions you’ll need to figure out once you’re out in the world, lest you become just another Angry Facebook Veteran scouring the internet for the next patriotic thing to be outraged about.