Have you ever had a love/hate relationship? Sometimes people ask me about my experience in the Marines. There are so many ways to answer that. I’ll keep it short…
It’s one of the best things I’ve ever done. But getting the heck out was also one of the best things I’ve done!
I was only 17 when I enlisted. Because I was still a minor, my parents had to sign my life away. Then I became property of the U.S. Government. And I wasn’t even a U.S. citizen!
By scoring well on assessment tests I was able to choose pretty much any military occupation, as well as where I wanted to be stationed. I decided on the infantry.
At face value, I gained combat training: military tactics, marksmanship, hand-to-hand combat, explosive ordnance and specialized training in amphibious assaults, urban warfare, mountain warfare. and communications.
From a deeper and more personal level, the Marines forced me to battle some of my “dragons“. It’s impossible to go into any detail without turning into a lengthy novel. I do have a couple other related posts though. Check out “How to Make a U.S. Marine,” and my other post, “Why I Joined the Marines.” You can also read this for fun.
Aside from that, it definitely honed characteristics like focus and self discipline. I’m sure it fueled some of that passion and intensity I’ve been known to have as well. I’m grateful for the many layers of training and experience I was exposed to at such a young age. It definitely shaped me and awakened my perspective.
Oh, and by the way, I did receive my U.S. citizenship after I got out. : )