When it rains in Israel, religious Jews thank God and secular types get excited about reversing the declining level of the Kinneret. And soldiers? We suffer. Literally. The massive rainstorm in Israel this week made what should have been a pleasant lead up to my Tekes Hashbah [swearing in ceremony] into the two hardest days of basic training (so far!). Rain and wind and cold and mud meant that all my gear was soaked, that my tent became a swamp and that what was supposed to be a mild 14 km masa on Monday night became a demanding slog through the desert mud. Although the rain was mostly absent the next day, Tuesday was easily my hardest twenty hours yet in the army. The reason had more to do with my lack of energy than the exhausting day that saw us working on our gear till nearly three in the morning (needless to say, we did not get our six hours of stipulated rest that night!).
I have been told that reminding myself Gam Ze Ya'avor, this too shall pass, is the best means to overcome such tough times. Others note that it is worth remembering that my fellow soldiers may be suffering just as much. Not sure if either piece of advice does much good when all the muck in the world seems to be building up in your corner and the inner drive that usually plows me throw is calling in sick. I suppose tough days like these will only make me stronger for the even tougher challenges that lie ahead, both those that come from without as well as within.
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