As I was setting up my blog account on WordPress, I finally got to watch the movie, Captain Phillips. I must say, of all the movies produced in recent years where the Navy plays a significant role in the plot line, this movie definitely made me feel the most Navy pride.
I swear, the first year of my being in the Navy was difficult, to say the least. I’d cringe at the thought of boot camp or Great Lakes, Illinois. My body warmed and my heart raced with anxiety when it was my duty day. I had often times wondered why I threw myself and family in this chaotic lifestyle of the military at 32 years old. When I looked at pictures of me in uniform or anyone else in a Navy uniform, I rolled my eyes. All I could think about was how bad I wanted to be here before I joined; and afterward, I just wanted to be me again…mother and wife.
It has taken some time and work, but my transition to Navy life is coming around and is a lot less painful to live so-to-speak. I’m much more comfortable wearing my uniform now, although they are a pain to wear sometimes. I don’t cringe at the thought of bootcamp anymore. If anything, I laugh and reminisce of the days I spent with all of those young adults being molded into respectable Sailors, Airmen, and Firemen.
After a 6 week sea trip to Washington state from Virginia, I finally felt like I earned the right to wear that uniform and to say that I was in the U.S. Navy. Being underway was an amazing experience for me. The ship itself is a magnificent vessel cutting through the ocean. Witnessing the majestic sunrise and sunset on the wide open sea, I’d close my eyes and breathe in the life at that very moment. The breeze of the salty sea air would blow against my face reminding me of where I was. Let’s really think about this…how many people actually get this opportunity?
It is amazing that only one year ago, I was on the ship, making its way through the Panama Canal…and today, I spend my workdays in an office at a computer because of the recent diagnosis of an auto-immune disease. A year ago, I was scared and excited, sad and happy, motivated and physically fit. So much has changed for me emotionally because of this new disease. Because it has affected so much of my health, strength, energy, and overall well-being, I feel like I am having to get to know myself again. My plans and dreams of becoming a commissioned Social Worker for the Navy is gone. So, now what?
I’ll answer that question during my next post…