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neurotic Iraqi wife

September 18, 2008

A Pure and Honest Honour...

I didn’t want to over shadow my earlier post, but I want these words to be posted, so I can remember it forever, and remember today. As always I was out smoking, I came in, and I see our Director of Programs walking extremely fast. He then looked at me and said “where have you been hiding?” in a very serious voice. I was surprised for why is he asking me this? He doesn’t deal with me, he never had.

I continued walking and sat on my chair to do my work. I looked around, I see the CG (Commanding General) in our area, talking to our Sector Lead, like he always does. I didn’t think much of it. Two minutes later, I noticed a movement from the side of my eye. Again didn’t think much of it. UNTIL. Until they were all standing next to my desk. I looked up and saw the General with a serious frown and then he said “Has anyone read your rights to you young lady?” To say I was scared shitless, will be an understatement. In all my three years, and the one year under this General, these were his first words ever to me. My first thought was Oh Shit, they found out about my blog. I just stood up, and looked as confused as ever. Then the Director of Programs said “You have broken the law, you know you cant smoke here, don’t you?”

Hmm, at that point, although relieved cause its not about the blog, I knew something was fishy. So I simply looked straight at him and said “No, I don’t”. He then broke into smiles, and so did the General, and there, the General opened his hand, and handed me the Coin of Excellence. WOW. The General rarely does that for contractors, and he rarely comes to someone’s desk and hands them the coin. Thanks to the Big Boss, and my utmost thanks goes to MY Boss for asking to recognize my efforts (Thank you). I am ever so grateful for their belief in me.

But when the moment of truth came by, Me, Neurotic Iraqi Wife, the woman that can go on talking forever and give headaches to people all over the world, to her family and friends, and ofcourse her husband, at that moment, I was utterly SPEECHLESS! Not a single word that I have learnt since childhood came out of these lips except the words Thank You. Bloody hell.

You cannot understand how stupid I felt. Really Stupid. During all that, my mind was going “What IS WRONG WITH YOU, SAY SOMETHING ELSE FOR CRYING OUT LOUD!” And the words Thank you, just kept popping up. OH MY GOD. But then I finally managed to say how I really felt; that it was an honour for me to be here in my own country because I believe it’s the duty of every Iraqi to try and do something, as little as it may seem. Phew.

I seriously don’t think I deserve this coin, but instead, I believe that this coin should be dedicated to all those who lost their lives in the name of this country. First and foremost I dedicate it to all the innocent Iraqi martyrs whose blood is still running deep. Deep within these rivers. And ofcourse, I also dedicate it to the coalition forces and the multi national forces who may not have sacrificed their lives because they “love” us, but they sacrificed their lives in the name of their own country. And to me, to me all those who sacrificed their lives for THEIR country is the epitome of ones honour. A Pure and Honest Honour…

posted by neurotic_wife at 10:00 PM


Congratulation! The honor was well deserved.

September 18, 2008 at 10:35 PM  


Of course, you deserve the Coin of Excellence! (I hope Hubby gets one, too.) You deserve to be honored for all YOU have sacrificed to be there, as well as managing to do an excellent job while working under the constant risk and stress of living in a war zone.

You need to go to the ceremony. You won't feel good about skipping it and disappointing the people who just honored you with an award. Besides, it's a perfect opportunity to release some emotion before you exit the country. It's certainly an appropriate occasion for laughter and tears (wear waterproof mascara).

All the Best,

September 18, 2008 at 11:47 PM  

Gratz, NIW!

I seriously don’t think I deserve this coin...

Heh. I bet you do! You certainly leave a good impression with your blogging! If you are half as good on the job, then they are lucky to have you :)

September 19, 2008 at 12:43 AM  

Neurotica, You deserve proudly, I'm so sad, you will leave Iraq, but in the same time, happy you will return to your normal life, not life behind the bars, I have nothing to say, Neurotica, I wish all happiness to you and your Hubby, thanks Neu for everything, you gave me the power I need and the spirit i miss.
I suggest to publish your book soon, 3 years in Iraq, are good enough to write down you experiment in your country.
I wish we can contact you by email,my email in my blog,please be in touch, we want to know and hear from you even when you back to your normal life,I almost cry Neo, You mean alot to me.
You mean alot to me.

September 19, 2008 at 1:53 AM  

Now I wanna show you my Statue of Liberty coin from 1986. It had a magical effect of making me think my Grandmother was a straight man. It may be the physical apparatus that is currently making her deaf? I know it's time to dress Frenchie up as Lady Di. I'm surprised it hasn't been confiscated. I used to pretend it launched nukes at the hospital. Launching nukes was the only way to turn my grandmother back into a lady. I'm just disappointed, that's all.

September 19, 2008 at 5:13 AM  

Congratulation Neurotica, you certainly do deserve the recognition for your efforts.

So, this is it! the final day is around the corner by the looks of it! take care and look forward to a much "quieter" days. One thing that you may face more often from now on and for some time is how different the way you look at things from others even if those others are your family or closest friends let alone strangers. What you have been through is what is called a life altering experience especially for a woman (and I mean in the best of ways here). If it was not for your hubby staying back, it would have been safe to say that the fear/concern of what the future has for you would be the overwhelming feeling but I'm not sure what you're thinking of now. May be all of the above. Congratulations again, it is nice to see that genuine efforts are being recognized and appreciated. Cheers to a neu life ;)

September 19, 2008 at 6:24 AM  

They may not have loved you (Iraqis) to begin with, but as they say, "To know you ... ".
Congratulations! Once in a while the brass amazes us by having a clue.

(You note that the rest of us properly offer you plural congratulations, not the chintzy single congratulation given by chas. Of course, that could just have been a grammar error. :D )

September 19, 2008 at 10:24 AM  

from ellen ....

i haven't agreed with every post of yours ... but you ... *put your money where your mouth is* ....

congrats on a job well done ...

September 19, 2008 at 1:20 PM  

(hehehehe) I gotta be impressed by a General that could render you speechless NIW:D I hope future generations continue to honor those who have given so much, just as you have done. Well done my friend. Solo

September 19, 2008 at 2:03 PM  

Coin of Excellence for what?
1- Working for the occupation in the occupying zone is treated as treachery. Just imagine the roles were reversed and you were handing such a token to an American working for you in Washington DC which is under Iraqi occupation?
2- Notwithstanding the point above, you profess to loath the Iraqi government, a you-must-admit is a puppet government for the Americans, run by the Americans and was never really meant to benefit Iraqis or Iraq.
3- According to you life in the Occupying zone is not all bad: Fat salaries, paid for non-worked overtime, little America with all its attractions making it home from home for all. If you have dual nationality, why not work in Britain instead.
4-You give credit to the Occupiers for sheer dedication in building Iraq; yet look at the real Iraq around you and wake up to how LITTLE the most powerful and advanced country in the world has done: collateral damage on a scale to rival an earlier sacker and occupier of Iraq, Genghis Khan of the Mongols. They definitely are not here for the interest of Iraq. Why are you in Iraq and working in the zone? Where is this Hubby working “thousands of miles away” rebuilding Iraq?
4- You are 100% right in saying you are working for your “Commanding General”, you are a disgrace to Iraq as well as Hubby.
5- Stop taking cheap shots at the Iraqi government and officials because in their own way, they too, just like you, are serving the Occupation to the detriment of Iraq.
6- Your blog and your stint in Iraq will be “branded”; ask your General to explain it for you, a dis-honourable discharge from Iraq and from being an Iraqi.
7- Please take Hubby and the Coin with you.

September 19, 2008 at 3:44 PM  

Congratulations. You earned it and you definitely deserve it.

September 19, 2008 at 8:50 PM  

Lol global, I ve seen worse and heard worse than you. So spare me. Your words mean nothing except taking space on my blog. But I will keep it. I know myself, and I dont need to justify what I say or do, especially to someone like you. But hey thanks for reading..dont waste your time or mine anymore...

For everyone else, thanks alot! Again as I said, I dont deserve it, simply because its a team effort. Without the team I worked with, I wouldnt have been able to achieve what I have achieved so far...

September 19, 2008 at 8:53 PM  

IT, no THANK YOU!!! You are a hero, one that deserves a better life. I know how you feel when u say you are seen as a collaborator. Ive been through the same, because people are ignorant. but dont EVER let this stop you. Never let it interfere with your dreams and aspirations. Although I dont know you...I feel you...Stay safe ok? And never stop what you are doing. I want to read your posts, you have to tell the world the whole truth. Its our job...Take care IT, and all the best. And btw, although I dont comment on ur blog always, I do read your words...

Leo, its funny you say that. Yes this has been one hell of an experience. It changed me alot, and made me learn many things about myself, be it on a professional level, or a personal one. I will take with me good memories, and I will definitely be intouch with many people.

It will be different when I go home and live in the real world. The one here is pretty fast, so I dont know how its gonna be with a slow pace. But I do have good news, the Big Boss, asked me if its ok that I will continue with the job, even when I leave. So I will not be gone completely. I will still be working on the same thing. I was pretty taken aback!!!

As for me dealing with "normal" people in a "normal" environment will definitely be interesting. Here Im used to being bossy and getting what I want when I want it. Im very independent, even my family knows it, so yes it sure will be different. Then I have my wifely duties to look forward to, lol. HUBBY wont be with me for about 2 months or so, he is staying, so its a good time to practice my cooking :)

September 19, 2008 at 9:14 PM  

Congrats... thank you for all of your work.

September 20, 2008 at 12:09 AM  

Congratulations! Very well deserved after your struggle and sacrifice of a healthy mental state and everything else you have put up with.

And as for the last post DO NOT, stop writing!

September 20, 2008 at 3:22 AM  

Congratulations, NIW. I cannot believe you were at a loss for words for the first time in your life! :-)

Regarding the Iraq situation, I guess it is very hard to change the core beliefs of Iraqis quickly. Although a lot of Americans are cynical about politics in the USA, I think most American still have a sincere belief in honest and effective and fair democratic government that truly serves the people. This little sincere naive belief is enough to keep things moving in the right direction generally.

Iraqis have had the unfortunate twin cirumstances of living under a brutal dictator and of living in an oil exporting nation. These twin experiences probably make it very difficult to develop the right attitude about effective, honest, non-corrupt democratic government.

If the U.S.A. had enormous oil reserves, then I think it would change the mental dynamic from "how do we work together to solve our problems" to "how do I get the most money from the government".


September 20, 2008 at 5:31 PM  

You say:" So spare me. Your words mean nothing except taking space on my blog. But I will keep it. I know myself, and I dont need to justify what I say or do, especially to someone like you. But hey thanks for reading..dont waste your time or mine anymore..."

1-It is clear my words have hit a sensitive chord, for deep down you know that you should have not been where you are. Did/do you or Hubby consider finding decent employment in Britain or elsewhere instead?
Expats have a saying about postings before occupied-Iraq showed up: the needy go but the greedy stay!For occupied-Iraq I would read:the greedy go and stay.

2-Assuming you are not and since work on so-called helping Iraq has not yet been completed, can you please tell your audience why you are deserting your native country???

3-Why go public with a blog if you cannot accept the basic tenents of democracy, free speech and debate?

4-You have gone public and you must accept both scrutiny and criticisim.

If my name gives an indication to my views and personality, then it is my manners which prevent me from drawing any conclusions about yours, Mrs Iraqi Neurotic Wife.

September 20, 2008 at 11:19 PM  

So, it took a medal to make you speechless? :)

hehe, alf mabrook Neurotica!! you deserve it, if not for your work then for your blog!!!

bas why for the sake of anything would he say what he said about your rights?! do they read you your rights before you get arrested or before they give you a medal? and they called us extremists?!!!

September 21, 2008 at 10:10 PM  

3ala fikra, inti mub khayfa innhom yekteshfoon el mudawenna hathi ba3d ma katabti innek nelte 3ala hatha al wisam (aw a medaliya)?

deeri balech 3ala 7alech.. allah ye7meech

September 21, 2008 at 10:12 PM  


September 23, 2008 at 5:54 PM  

truly awesome. congrats.

September 24, 2008 at 7:21 AM  

I have loved reading your blog since I discovered it. I appreciate your candor about what you see over there as well. Congrats on the coin, my dad was in the Air Force and I know how rare it can be to get them. Thank you also for your 9/11 post as well. I am going to forward it to everyone on my email list, voices like yours need to be heard more often on my side of the world. Take care and good luck!

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