This We Believe

Separated by Differences, United by Beliefs

Die Before You’re Dead

on February 20, 2013

When you wake up and realize you aren’t dead, you begin to live.  It is something that, at some point, everyone and everybody must realize.  Until you do, you have not lived.

I believe that death is the Great Motivator.

In 2009, I was deployed to Iraq to find and capture the people who were making bombs.  One night would forever change my life.  Parked on a narrow canal street in an oversized behemoth of a vehicle, it became apparent that this could be my time.  We were surrounded by darkness except for what our spotlights lit up.  A known explosive was somewhere ahead in the road and if we ran into trouble, there was nowhere to go but forward.  My team knew it, and the enemy knew it.  We had to properly and effectively deal with the large bomb placed in front of us.  Three homes were nearby, and off in the distance, I could see movement on our night camera.  The night had the feeling have something going terribly wrong.  I braced myself for the worst.

After a tense moment of watching the local gazers, we sent to mechanical robot to do the work.  Unfortunately, because of the pitch black night and small road, the robot drove off the side of the road and got stuck.  Now, having a feeling of being rushed, we had to walk down and investigate it in person.  A teammate of mine suited up in his bomb gear and rushed down to the site.  We anxiously watched from the camera what we could.  Radios were rendered inoperable during this time since even its signal could set of the explosive.  After a few minutes, my teammate stood up and slowly walked back.  He had planted more explosives to detonate on top of it.  We cleared the area and began our countdown.  If anything went wrong, it would wake the neighborhood and compromise our mission.  He pulled the cord…BOOM!  We waited for the dust to clear and pulled through the area immediately afterward.  The rest of the drive home was quiet.

Once I faced and overcame the fear of death, it became my best friend.

People see death and life as black and white; good and evil.  Death can give you wings and let you fly.  It can lead you to the daily grind, or the daily adventure.  It can envelope us, or it can free us.  What it does is our own personal choice based on your actions, and one that no one else can make those decisions for us

Find your death and start living.

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