Suppression

Reads: 22  | Likes: 0  | Shelves: 0  | Comments: 1

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Status: Finished  |  Genre: Memoir  |  House: Booksie Classic

In the twilight of my life, I had envisioned a life of leisure and carefree existence in the Valley where I was brought up and where I learned about life, friendships, love and even death. A retirement in the place that nurtured my mind, my heart and my soul.

SUPPRESSION

By Al Garcia

In the twilight of my life, I had envisioned a life of leisure and carefree existence in the Valley where I was brought up and where I learned about life, friendships, love and even death.  A retirement in the place that nurtured my mind, my heart and my soul.

And so, I returned to the place where my roots still reach deep into the soil and extent into the very heart of my heritage and my legacy as a Chicano/Mexican-American.  I returned to the Rio Grande Valley.  However, I returned not as the young and innocent boy that had left, but now as a grown man.  A man filled with a lifetime of living -- a lifetime that has included the death of my parents, the death of my innocence, and my trip into the depths of hell and back. 

Instead of finding the leisure and carefree existence I had hoped for, I found myself wandering back to times and places that invoked extreme emotions of sadness, guilt, confusion, which I had for many years successfully suppressed and concealed within my mind.  I did not know that retirement brought with it time to think, time to remember, and time to relieve parts of my life I had tried so hard to forget.  And all this occurred after an Army buddy reconnected with me after almost 47 years of having served together in Vietnam. 

I had never imagined that my retirement would make be relive something that I had tried so hard to silence and squash for over 47 years – the sounds, the pictures, the words, the faces of war.  Retirement gave me time to sit and think and remember -- the very things that can ignite our imagination and our memories, and our experiences. 

Instead of carefree days, I found my days filled with memories of fear, of anguish, of uncertainty and of empathy.  Instead of a leisurely retirement, I found myself becoming mentally and physically exhausted each day – exhausted with revealing and reliving my most personal of thoughts and emotions of a segment of my life that I had thought long forgotten – the Vietnam war.  A time and place now mostly remembered in history books and in minds like mine that will never forget. 

I do have days that I enjoy working on my yard or playing and enjoying time with my dogs.  And I do enjoy visiting with family and with friends.  Yet out of nowhere my mind wonders back to my time in Vietnam.  A word, a phrase, a picture or simply the thought of an emotion or a feeling can immediately transport me back in time.  And it makes me want to write it down and get it out of my system, out of my screaming soul where I had suppressed it for far too long. 

And this, my friends, is why you have seen too many of my posts of late.  Posts of war and what I felt and saw back then so many years ago.  This is my way to exorcise the memories that somehow, someway found their way into my consciousness and into my very being, so many years after it all took place. 

I am finding out that what we attempt to suppress or conceal within our mind and within our heart, for whatever reason, or for whatever motive or intention, eventually reveals itself and makes us relieve the time and the emotion all over again, and again, and again. 

And I guess that is part of growing old, and having tried unsuccessfully to suppress a part of one’s life when we should have lived it, accepted it, and tried our best to move forward without regrets, doubts or lingering grief of what happened or what could have been.


Submitted: June 11, 2021

© Copyright 2021 A.Garcia. All rights reserved.

  • Facebook
  • Twitter
  • Reddit
  • Pinterest
  • Invite

Add Your Comments:

Comments

Crowefoot

Thats a powerful post. I hope writing and sharing your memories helps you overcome the torment because you definately deserve to enjoy your retirement free from anguish. Thanks for sharing this.

Sat, June 12th, 2021 12:33pm

Facebook Comments

Boosted Content from Premium Members

Poem / Romance

Short Story / Science Fiction

Writing Contest / Flash Fiction

Other Content by A.Garcia