Memorial Day is a Holiday observed for the Men and Women who made the ultimate Sacrifice in protecting the United States and everything that it holds. We celebrate by remembering their spirit and what they sacrificed for us. Everyone respects this holiday differently and may have different ways of showing it. Thank you for everything you have done for my freedom. Fair Winds and Following Seas. We have the Watch.
To read more on the history of Memorial Day click the buttons below:
“Our nation owes a debt to its fallen heroes that we can never fully repay.”
– Barack Obama
Armed Forces Day
Today is a celebration for our brothers and sisters, the men and women who have signed up to protect us and this country. This is for those who are currently serving and those who have served. If you would like to read and learn more about this, click the button below.
“Word to the Nation: Guard zealously your right to serve in the Armed Forces, for without them, there will be no other rights to guard.”
— President John F. Kennedy
My HM1 told my class today that we have to not only be flexible but, we also have to be resilient. He told us his story on how he had a strong, capable and resilient team out in Afghanistan, and the only reason why they were still alive was because of that resilience. This is what the military molds us to be. We have to be strong, flexible and able to recover quickly, it’s just the nature of the beast.
“Life doesn’t get easier or more forgiving, we get stronger and more resilient.”
― Steve Maraboli
How the Military Recently Impacted my Life
Being in the military is no easy task. I recently joined the Navy again as a reservist after I completed my active duty contract. In my post Getting back that Seabag I talked about my story and why I decided to join again. Well, it’s almost my one year mark as a Navy Reservist and it has been a whirlwind. From learning new things and figuring out the learning curve on how reservists operate. I finally was getting the hang of things.Go in on my “Warrior Weekends,” get caught up on training, workout and hang out with all my new friends I made. I was placed in a new unit, they were called the HM (Hospital Corpsman) detachment. I was excited, it meant I would be able to get on the job training and actually see what my new job did! Then I realized, I needed to get my “A” school set up so I will have the proper certifications. Fast forward to January and here I am.
This past week has been crazy, stressful, chaotic and adventurous to say the least. From getting military orders reprocessed twice, my personnel profile not being set up correctly to the military travel site messing up on my airfare, its surprising that I actually made it here to Fort Sam Houston in Texas. None the less, here I am and it is completely what I expected…kinda. Since this is an “A” school, everyone is treated in a student status which means no freedom in a sense. Secured liberty by 2200 (10 pm), can’t leave base, can’t drive and I have to still be in my uniform. This is considered phase 1, it’s meant for the fresh out of bootcamp people. People that don’t know how to act in the fleet yet. Then there is a phase 2 which is a little more freedom, we can wear civilian clothes and travel off base. We just have to be back by 2200. Then finally there is phase 3. That means we can have all our freedom back and stay out overnight on the weekends. Going from reserves and a whole civilian life back into student status is almost like a complete shock to me. I haven’t been in an “A” school for almost 7 years! Thank goodness, I have about eight other “fleet returnees” in class with me, which makes this bearable.
So going from a DC, Damage Controlman to an HM, Hospital Corpsman will be interesting. There will be a lot of knowledge to take in these next 4 months. This school coincides with my civilian career which is a huge perk for me. Not only will I have civilian side knowledge, but, I will also have military combat medical knowledge to use to my advantage. I start my actual class Wednesday, after the long week of life skills that are taught to everyone to make sure were well rounded Sailors. I look forward to learning as much as I can, so that I can challenge myself and those around me. Here is to a new adventure, for the start of a new year! Time to push myself, learn something new and dedicate myself to Corpsman school and flourish in this new trade.
“You fight like you train.”
– George S. Patton Jr.
“This country has not seen and probably will never know the true level of sacrifice of our veterans. As a civilian, I owe an unpayable debt to all our military. Going forward let’s not send our servicemen and women off to war or conflict zones unless it is overwhelmingly justifiable and on moral high ground.“
– Thomas M. Smith
What It Means To Me
The military in all its pride and patriotism sometimes get overlooked or frowned upon. Shocker I know. Over the many years the military have come to be appreciated by Americans and the World. During Veteran’s Day we think about the Veteran’s who have served our country and those continuing to serve and Protect our Freedom. Veteran’s Day is celebrated with parades, discounts from various stores, and camaraderie between all branches. Veteran’s are among us every day in life. They could be your next door neighbor, the Police Officer patrolling the town. They could be the teacher for your child or they could be your classmate. Most people can’t tell a Veteran from a civilian. I mean look at me, unless I told you, you wouldn’t even know. Appreciate those around you, some of them may have fought for your freedom and the freedom of this Country. I volunteered my service and my life willingly for the people of this country. I will continue to do so until I no longer can. I have made friendships, I have lost friends and I have experienced not many people can say they have. Being a Veteran, a female Veteran at that, is an honor and a privilege.
“Freedom is never more than one generation away from extinction. We didn’t pass it to our children in the bloodstream. It must be fought for, protected, and handed on for them to do the same.”
– Ronald Reagan
Sometimes I think that we have forgotten this as a whole. Quite honestly it breaks my heart because I know what we have fought for, and how hard we have been fighting.
“Train like you fight. Fight like you train. No man gets left behind.”
I hear this all the time in my military career and in EMS. It is very true. Dont take training lightly.
America The Beautiful: The Annual Pass
Who would have thought something in the military was easy? The military has a bunch of benefits that I wasn’t aware of because 1) Nobody told me about them and 2) I didn’t know the right questions to ask. I wondered about military deals on National Parks when I was stationed back in Virginia a few years ago. I wanted to go on a Park road trip but then I kind of forgot about it after a while and never looked into it. Last weekend I went on my Yosemite trip with one of my friends and I had forgotten all about the FREE annual pass for military until I got up to the entrance gate. I wondered if I could just get in with the show of an ID? I pulled up to the front gate and asked the ranger…”Hi…I have no idea if this is how you do it but I have my military ID.” She was full of energy and really sweet she said “all I need to do is make sure its valid” (looks at my ID) rummages through the desk and pulls out an annual pass card. She asked me to sign it and then gave me a park map and the pass…I looked at her dumbfounded. “That’s it?” I asked her. “That’s all there is to it. Its good for one year.” she said. I told her “Thank you! I never imagined it would be that easy!” She smiled and waved me through. I was shocked! I couldn’t believe I actually was able to do something like that. I forgot that benefit was even a thing! Active duty and their dependents, Active Reservists and their dependents and Disabled Veterans all rate this free annual pass. Don’t be afraid to ask questions, and to be curious. You’ll never know what you can do until you think about it and answer your question.
Where To Find The Information
There are a few easy sites to find more info and more detail about these passes. I had my friend look on Military.com for a quick minute before I got to the front gate.
What about Veterans you may ask? Unfortunately as a Veteran we do not qualify for the pass unless we are Disabled with a VA rating. However, on Veterans day park entrance fees will be waived.