Today, I’m publishing the third installment of my Air Force story under “Recent Musings” which covers my twelve weeks at Officer Training School (OTS) near Lackland Air Force Base in Texas. They say we have a “fight or flight” reflex; faced with a difficult situation we do one or the other. Despite my urge to flee, I proved too stubborn to admit defeat. Many have gone through the experience of Basic Training or Officer Training, not to mention ROTC or the four-year (gasp!) service academies and managed much better than I did those many years ago in muggy Texas. I was ill-equipped for success — not athletic, not a “joiner”, fond of my privacy and solitary pursuits. I was there mostly on a dare and because I could see that the experience might be good for me. Little did I know that I was embarking on a critical chapter in my life. Not mentioned in this installment is that my future husband had left Medina a mere three weeks before my arrival. I had no way of knowing this as I struggled with the demands of OTS, ultimately deciding to stick it out rather than leave and admit defeat. To this day, I am grateful to Lt. Bishop, not for his encouragement, but for being the burr under my saddle. Whether by design or by accident, he was the perfect foil to challenge me to bring out my inner warrior.
2 thoughts on “Fight or Flight”
My husband had four years of ROTC at Michigan State. I don’t think that was too grueling. He did have several horrible weeks of survivor training after he got in the Air Force. He also spent a year in Viet Nam. I guess non-military people don’t really know what it’s like to go through some of this. I only know from people telling me about it. Congratulations, for sticking it out and making it through OTS! If it helped to make you the person you are today, I’m glad you did it, because I really like who you are today.
Thank you, Kay. I really believe it depends on the individual. For some, the rigors of a military training program are not so challenging as for others. I remain grateful that I didn’t get it into my head to join the Marines. Now that would really have been a story! All said, our experiences do play a large role in our development as individuals. Fortunately, actually working as an Air Force officer proved much more up my alley than marching on the drill pad at Medina.