That’s a statement you think you would quit using well, once you grow up; however, is there a cutoff age for growing up? I surely hope not.
Some of the many things I’ve said I wanted to be when I grow up are a teacher, a doctor (ranging from an oncologist to an orthopedic surgeon for the PBR), a lawyer, a flight attendant, a missionary, a real estate agent, and so many more. I’ve always had a problem with being decisive; I even changed my major 7 times. There are just so many things I want to do and I didn’t want to settle. In that, I was also scared of change.
Well because of that, here I am 24 years old and still living in the same town I went to high school and college in. Without a doubt, I believe God has used this time to mold me into the person He wants me to be but also to prepare me for what’s coming next.
Back in April I went to visit my brother on his Army base in Kansas. For the past two years he has been trying to convince me to join the military through OCS. I never gave much thought to the idea until this last visit. That’s when it all clicked for me. This is what I wanted for my life and this was something I could be proud of. Before I left to go home I promised my brother I would go to my local recruiter by the end of the week and talk to them about getting the process started. It was either that or he was going to drag me to one on his base.
It was a rainy Friday afternoon on my lunch break when I pulled up to the recruiting center. Once I walked in I was so nervous that I almost turned around. But I promised I would go (and had to get proof that I went) to my brother. I’m pretty positive the two soldiers and the two guys who just enlisted thought I was lost when I walked through the door. I was wearing a black pencil skirt, some Barbie pink stilettos and still had my name tag from the bank on. I surely felt out of place and to add to the awkwardness that was me in that moment, I walked smack into this giant plant. I was so embarrassed. Everyone was staring and finally someone broke the silence and greeted me. I finally mustered up the courage to get out the line I had been practicing all week, “Hi, my name is Sarah and I am here to apply for OCS.” Y’all. That was the hardest sentence I’ve ever had to say.
From there I went with a recruiter into her office, still in an awkward nervous shock. She took my measurements and told me what I needed to do to meet the physical requirements. We joked and she helped lighten the mood and made me feel really excited for this new opportunity. She had told me no one has ever walked into their office to apply for OCS so this was exciting for her as well. I live in an incredibly small town and it really isn’t something you hear of every day…or month even. I left there feeling super excited, super challenged (it’s not an easy thing to get into and I’m super competitive), and ready for this change.
Well I started training and that was proving to be really stinkin hard. I cannot do real push ups, 6 is my max. My brother was texting me every day staying on me and telling me what to do. He was sending me links to workout programs that would help me get into military shape. For the first month I was really into it. I could actually do like 10 push ups without dying!😂 Then life got in the way, I started working more, and I was just exhausted. Besides the bank, babysitting, and tutoring I started waiting tables again. That didn’t leave anytime after work to train so I joined the gym and was going every morning before work. I was so tired all of the time at this point so I slacked off working out and kept making excuses.
So here we are a couple of months later and I’m still not able to do the 35 push ups in two minutes that I want to be able to do..granted I really need to aim for 46. Well. Something has happened to re-inspire me and push me towards my goal. I was tutoring a student for the ASVAB and I was so inspired by his dedication to really learning the material and his dedication to joining the Army. Day in and day out he was devoting all of his time to studying and I was so proud of him. His test day finally came and guess what! He passed! He text me to let me know and I was ecstatic! And a few weeks later I was scrolling through Facebook and I saw where he was officially sworn into the army. I AM SO PROUD OF HIM! I really don’t think I have had a prouder moment; I’m humbled to know him and see how his hard work has paid off! I never told him this, but he is the reason my dream is alive again. He has proven to me that if you want something bad enough you will do what it takes to get it.
Up until this moment, only a handful of people know this decision I have made. I have friends who completely support the decision and some that are a bit hesitant. I understand that. The few members of my family that know are 100% on board with the idea, it will be such a betterment to my life. My mom of course doesn’t want her baby to join but I think she knows this is what will make me happy. My coworkers have been so supportive and encouraging. It’s been a blessing and humbling experience so far to see the support I have of those around me. This is the most exciting and the scariest decision I have ever made in my life. But I know 100% this is the right path for me.
I’ve always been a believer in doing good and in doing what’s right. Even when it’s not the popular decision to do the right thing and stand up for what is right I think you must always do it. In the face of opposition and the trials of life there is never a right moment to do what is wrong. I believe in helping others and being a selfless servant; even when it’s tough I want to fight to prove my integrity, show honor, and courage. I want to make a difference in this world for the better and I want to be a part of something bigger than myself.
That is why when I grow up I want to be a U.S. Soldier.