Sometimes away due to his illness, I knew
Sometimes I ask myself, “Why am I in the Army? ” There are days I love it, and days I am surprised to be here at all. My experience so far in the Army has been positive, for the most part. Tactically and physically I feel I have pushed myself. I enjoy being mentally and physically challenged, and that part of my personality played a major part in my desire to become an Army reservist in the first place.
I never want to say I did not try my hardest or do my best. I have always believed I could do more in life and that is one reason I became an enlisted Army soldier.The initial reason I joined in December of 2009 was to help my father, Art. My dad was diagnosed with lung cancer in September 2009, and I had been out of work over a year. I felt he didn’t need the additional stress of house payments and bills on top of chemotherapy. When my father passed away due to his illness, I knew I still wanted to be in the Army. It was hard to move on after his death, but training to be an Army reservist actually helped me out the year after he died.
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I also joined the Army to challenge myself and see how I could survive this self imposed test. Motivation here and beyond is key to my overall success. I admittedly at times have felt mine drop to abysmal levels. What helps is considering those that have done more than I have, endured more than I have, and who continue to “soldier on” and succeed in their careers. I am not married, have no children, and no longer have my parents.
The one person I think that inspires me is my twin sister, Serafina.I think about how hard she works to live on her own in New York, I think of all the struggles she has survived, and I consider her patience and love. She is my best friend, and probably the strongest person I know. I enjoy working with others. Completing missions is satisfying, and I enjoy the process of working on a team. Teamwork allows for camaraderie to be built, morale to be strengthened, and skills to be honed in each of us. I feel I work well on a team, and thrive on achieving success through cooperative learning and work.
My past experiences in graduate school courses working on teams have made me accustomed to succeeding when working with others. The challenge the Army provides is a blessing and a curse. Like a good workout, you may not really know the true value of it until later. I feel as long as I know I have tried my hardest, I am doing my best. When I go beyond what I have already achieved, that increases my desire to deliver an even greater effort the next time. I achieve self motivation, and that is an incredible feeling.