Lately I've been wanting to update my blog, since I haven't done so since May 2010, which is probably the longest time I've gone without updating it since I began it last year. I've been struggling with what to write about or maybe just because in retrospect, my life seems to be better than it was a year ago, that I no longer have anything to learn or maybe to pass on to someone who might benefit from my experiences.
Yet, even now writing here, I find myself able to express things that I often don't usually verbalize. Whether or not I have a lesson to pass on, doesn't matter. I write here for me and no one else.
So before I start, I want to preface the changes that my blog will be going through, not as extensive as what I did before though. The past posts have all focused on things I learned through the past and the events that corresponded as well as how those events tie into stuff I was experiencing in the present. The tone will more or less focus on that now. I will try to relay some of the things that I experience and the emotions that come into play and how that's tying into the present and future. Just go with me here.
I find myself starting Primary flight training to become an NFO (Naval Flight Officer) down here in Pensacola. I have just completed API (Aviation PreIndoctrination Training) and that had its own challenges that I had to deal with mentally and physically. Every single day I find myself looking up to the other training aircraft flying around and in disbelief that I'm actually a part of this culture (or at least becoming part of this). Me personally, I've definitely had some inner struggles that I've had to battle in order to get to this point. Struggles with doubt, confidence issues, and overall feeling like at certain times, like I've made a big mistake.
Naval Aviation is filled with people who are considered to be of "Type A" personalities. We (yes I said we) like to be the best, all the time, every day. I, myself, am competitive in most things....if there was a contest with who could sleep the best, I would win. (Just being honest) Being around people who are just like myself, there is ALWAYS an atmosphere of competition....even unspoken. When you feel like you're not measuring up or struggling at something that someone else seems to succeed at, you begin to second guess yourself. This happened mostly over the past few months. There were days where I'd wake up and not want to go to class, or not go and swim. There was even a few days when I wanted to quit because I was frustrated, tired, pissed off, and generally feeling like I was the red-headed stepchild. (No offense to any of my ginger friends). However, even with those thoughts of doubt, oftentimes I hate to admit it - self pity - and basically pouting too, I sucked it up and kept going. I made a commitment to myself that I wanted to see the other side or whatever the next goal was....
One step at a time and one day at a time. I prayed and prayed hard to God to get me through events as fast as possible, which in turn may not have been exactly the way to go about praying for that....but thats another topic. I chose to keep going because I knew that deep down, if I couldn't make it through this, I didn't deserve whatever goal lie ahead of me. I had to search deep inside of myself and re-discover my motivation for being here. Some of you may say, "why? It wasn't that bad." No it wasn't and I agree with you. But those same feelings of failure I felt one year ago, I allowed to come back and at times, I allowed it to paralyze me. I made a promise to myself that I'd never be the victim ever again. It's unreal how much your own mind can become your worst enemy when you need it most. I countered every single thought with something verbal. Every time. Soon enough, I found myself finishing the first "phase" of my training and progressing to my actual flight training. Even though its not really a big deal in the grand scheme of things, I know that there are many who don't get to make it to this point for one reason or another. Finishing alone gave me back that confidence and positive moto I need in order to climb the next mountain. I learned what I need to do if my mind decides to try to get in the way of my current situation. I also know that there won't be any room or time to allow things to affect me the way they have in the past. My verbal confidence has to be on the same page as my mental/physical confidence. This is only the beginning and I know I'm gonna have much more to learn but I don't intend to learn them the same way I have in the past (the hard way).
I wasn't brought here to fail and I also know that God didn't mean for me to come down here just to be sent home either. Knowing and believing that is the most difficult part though. I know the things I have yet to go through are going to be even harder and more stressful with each successive step I take upwards, but I don't intend to walk the path of self pity and destruction/depression again. That road was closed and won't be opening anytime soon.
There's nothing wrong with wanting to be good at everything or wanting to do well or be #1 (unless you're egotistical and an ass about it), but when you come against an obstacle that seems to be impeding your progress, keep in mind what crossed to get to that point. Don't look back, keep looking forward. Your past is your past for a reason. Verbally tell your mind to shut up and be positive and focus and keep that moto there. Sounds stupid and it sounds easy....but I know for me, it happens more often than I care to count. You've got to believe and every word you say. If you say one thing, yet doubt it a second later.....it loses its impact.
Until next time.....