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Old 12-11-2004, 01:58 AM   #1
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The War and the help of my aqaurium

Ladies and Gents, I have served my country for about 12 years now and I would just like to pass on how my hobby of sustaining a reef aquarium has helped me through the process of re-adapting to normal society.

Recently I have returned from my second tour in the Middle East. Mostly Iraq. When I left, I put the care of my 55 gallon aquarium into the hands of my wife. She did a pretty good job since I departed and have returned. These deployments have been very mentally draining.... that's all I will say about the subject.

When I did return home it was very weird. Loud noises made my adrenalin jump. I had a hard time sleeping without dreaming about what I have seen. I had horrible anxiety for the first two weeks and felt like I was not at home.

To make a long story short. The fact that I can look at my clown fish in it's host anemone, the mushrooms multiplying, the numerous tube worms devoloping, the xenais devoliping, the hitchhickers along the way, and my other fish that have residence in my home, have allowed me to relax somehow. Somehow, I have found some sort of inner peace in looking through the glass of my rectangular reef. Somehow, I have been able to sleep at night imagining the inner wonders of the ocean habitat and its extreme diversity. Somehow, the normalcy of my life has come back to me again and I can enjoy a wonderment of nature in my own house.

This hobby has been very expensive for me but has helped me fit back in. I think I am going to start saving my money now to go to the 17th annual marine aquarium conferance. Maybe I have something to say about how our hobby can help veterans with post tramatic stress.

I am just a guy who likes to take time out of every day and reflect on my life while I reflect from my tank.
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Old 12-11-2004, 02:02 AM   #2
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no better way to escape thats for sure ! glad ya made it home and wouldnt wish that on anyone !
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Old 12-11-2004, 02:28 AM   #3
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I use my tank for the same purpose. I haven't been through the things you have, but watching for hours brings a certain amount of peace.

Glad your back safely!
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Old 12-11-2004, 11:37 AM   #4
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...busy over yonder right now myself. My best friend's wife is taking care of both tanks. ...pretty rushed to get things settled before I left but a relaxing evening in front of the reef tank with moon lights was enough to ease the stress. ...look forward to being home soon too but glad to be keeping us safe.
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Old 12-11-2004, 02:32 PM   #5
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Thank you for the great job you have just finished. I too use my tank for destressing. I've never had near the experience that you have, but I know what a relaxing place my tank is. Even my husband enjoys watching it before going off to work.

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Old 12-11-2004, 03:20 PM   #6
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I just want to personally thank you for your service. Regardless of what anyone may think of the war, your sacrifice is appreciated.
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Old 12-11-2004, 03:53 PM   #7
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The first thing I like to do after a stressful day at work is sit in front of the tank and relax. It works wonders.
I too, thank you for your service and sacrifice.
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Old 12-11-2004, 06:00 PM   #8
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Glad to hear you are home. Thank you for your service!
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Old 12-11-2004, 08:00 PM   #9
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Thank you for your service!

Ditto, I'm glad God saw fit to return you to your family. May He continue to bless you and your family.
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