I've officially succombed to the disease that affects almost everybody in Iraq as the end of their tour of duty approaches . . . malaise.
I've got less than 20 days left in country, and find myself having a hard time caring about much other than returning home and starting life over again with Marya and David.
Actually, it's not that I've stopped caring, but rather that caring so intensely has left me completely exhausted. I'm tired of the office politics that I endure everyday, I'm tired of the posturing and obstructionism of the national politics surrounding the war. I'm tired of being awaken by mortar fire and by the helicopters flying so low over my trailer it sounds as if they are about to land on the roof.
I'm even more tired of seeing MedEvac helicopters skimming above the palm trees, ferrying more wounded soldiers to the Combat Support Hospital.
I did have a brief respite from this affliction for two days recently as a buddy visited the IZ from Camp Victory. It did my heart good to see an old friend the CRC at Ft. Bliss, to compare our experiences in Iraq with the expectations we had when we flew into country together eleven months ago . . . and okay, to vent. The companionship ended up making it one of the best nights I've had since activating almost 14 months ago. But once separated again, it only made me wish that security conditions would have permitted us to visit more frequently, especially given that we were only separated by a few miles of highway.
There are still reasons to be hopeful for the war and Iraq's future despite the suicide bombers' continuing nihilistic onslaught. But I'm too tired to go into it right now.