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The road I have travelled down since the age of 14 has been an extremely difficult one. In 7th and 8th grade I did not fit in with anyone. I had almost no friends despite my relentless efforts to be one of the “cool” kids. I was small and was scared. I was so scared that I let a few of my peers bully me via AIM (old school shit yeah!). I convinced myself that I was worthless and weak. I cried a lot and always wished I could have run away. All of this depression and hatred did eventually force itself out of me. I got in my first fist fight in eighth grade. My attacker snuck behind me and threw a few solid punches to the back of my head. I turned around, threw a punch of my own, and split my opponent’s nose open. It was at this point in which I realized I was not worthless nor weak. I learned to not absorb every awful thing that was said about me. I never did become the popular kid (they were all douchebags anyways) but I learned to have some self confidence and to never back down from those bent on destroying my image. I am not a particular advocate of violence. There are definitely other ways of resolving issues. In my story though, violence was my only option at that point in my life. I tell this story today because it is Veterans Day and I cannot help but trace back the road that lead me to the military and the events that followed.

Tomorrow I will pick up where I left off and reveal even more of my story…