“The mind can go either direction under stress–toward positive or toward negative: on or off. Think of it as a spectrum whose extremes are unconsciousness at the negative end and hyperconsciousness at the positive end. The way the mind will lean under stress is strongly influenced by training.”
 Jessica Atreides
 There was no warning of sorts. My body worked as usual while carrying my personal gear while the sungods scorched us.
Then their arrows came.
A breaking of the sound barrier, a whistle through the air – right next to my head. After that came a deafening explosion, altough not anywhere near our location. Brothers screaming “TAKE COVER!” and “RPG!” simultaneously. We all took on the nearest cover. All our senses were brought to the highest alert, telling our bodies to kick-start the adrenaline rush for the sake of survival. All around me arrows fell, like death’s messengers, only to grin while they went passed our heads and bodies just to hit the wall behind us – a show of force, if anything. Then, our spirits caught fire and everything came into focus, and we answered the call by transforming ourselves into gods of war – unleashing furious waves of fire back at our advesaries location.

We tried to pin-point their location and concentrating fire without any real success. We had to gain the initiative.
I must admit it (without guilt or shame), the feeling was extraordinary. My belly was filled with a ball of calm that pulsated through my whole body. I looked at one comrade in cover and gave him a smile in the name of life. Everybody was more than alive and we were putting up a fight.
It comes a time when your get to a point of milliseconds, were you have to decide to act or react. I, as everybody else in my squad, took on the former. Acting on exactly what we’ve been trained for in years.
Anyhow, the initiative was not gained this time. Except for our sniper, most of our arrows never took ground beside the enemy. All the while, the mujaheddin started to aim even closer and better than initially, concentrating their hellfire with their PKM’s on our position – hammering our covers. We were pinned down. The order to fall back was screamed through our ranks, back into the nearby village and re-organize an attack on the “white hill” where we had spotted them. So we did. Falling back like we’ve done all years practicing on it. A well thrown smoke granade landed infront of our perimeter and gave us a smoke screen, and it began. Covering fire, holding brothers backs, running zic-zac and just doing it.
Hours later we came back, reinforced with attack helicopters and our numbers doubled. The insurgents fled and took a hiding in a mosque nearby. We took back ground, gaining initative and took control of the hill. Dark clouds drifted from the mountainhills in the east and Thor rode along with them, giving us spectacular scenes of lightning that danced in our winning favour. To Valhalla, my brothers..
Moments later, orders came to fall back to base. We knew we had them pinned down, but someone in the higher chain-of-command made a call.
In any case, the day ended well. Experience were drafted and none were wounded in the process. 
Why did I even bring this up? 
This is my version of the truth that you can read about here. This is one of the things I signed up for. One of the things that i’ve trained for. I’m not going to excuse myself for that. Someone could have died that day. That someone could have been me. A bullet entering the forehead and exiting the back of our neck in a bloody explosion – a hard truth of life.  
I’m not writing this so that I can gain some kind of respect or whatever. I’m writing this for my own sake, knowing that some people around me also tend to read my thoughts. I know many people tend to think the thoughts like – “Is he now damaged?”, “How could anyone put themselves in that position?” and/or “Is he really proud of trying to kill another human being in a seemingly pointless war?”.
No. I’m not proud of that.
I’m proud to say that I manage to do my work. My body listens to my will and I truly live life to it’s limits. That this work truthfully brings me closer to mankind. I’m proud of my brothers, whom stands with me in every possible weather or situation that comes before us.
In the end, i’m truthfully proud of you. Thank you for reading my thoughts.
Lance Corporal Fresh, at your service.

Me and my squad, having reached a mountaintop on a patrol in the Kunduz province.


One Response to “Hyperconsciousness”

  • Sadhana Says:

    Ohh, thank you for sharing. I´m so happy for you being hole, safe and in yourself. Love you!
    Now there is only three weeks left … M

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