Commentary

December 5, 2013

A 10 year decision

Tags:
Commentary by Airman 1st Class C. Massey
355th Fighter Wing Public Affairs
Commentary_pict
Airman 1st Class Chris Massey holds his son, Mason, while hugging his wife, Sarah after an Air Force basic military training graduation at Lackland Air Force Base, Texas, Feb. 28, 2013. Massey arrived at BMT 26 days before his 28th birthday and believes that age doesn’t define a person, rank or position because everyone who has joined the military committed to serve our country.

When most people decide to join the military, it’s usually right after high school. They don’t seriously consider joining active duty military at 27 years of age.

As someone who arrived at basic military training 26 days before his 28th birthday, I know all too well that there are reasons for joining ten years later than most.

When I was 17, I visited U.S. Army and Air Force recruiters. Quickly, I decided on the Air Force, as my grandfather, stepfather and cousin had done before me, with my parents’ blessing.

I proceeded to take the Armed Services Vocational Aptitude Battery test and scored well enough to impress the recruiter. All that was left was signing my name and swearing in.

I had a moment of doubt that made me question whether or not I was ready. “Why was I joining? What have I done with my life up to this point? What are my other options? Am I ready for this commitment?” I asked myself these questions over and over.

The doubt was too much to ignore so I called the disappointed recruiter to tell him that I had changed my mind.

As each year passed, I wondered, “What if I had joined?” and “Is now the time?”

Over the next 10 years, I married the love of my life and had a healthy baby boy. I had been working the same job for eight years with no chance of advancement and my options in the job market without a degree seemed bleak.

At 27-years old, I had to wonder if it was too late.

I contacted the local recruiter and the first question I asked him about was the age limit for joining active duty. Upon hearing that I only had four months left on the clock, I knew I had a decision to make. It was now or never.

I chose now.

Now 11 months into my military career, I am a 28-year-old airman first class, making me as much as 10 years older than my peers. This will remain a fact for the rest of my military career.

In my opinion, age does not define a person, rank or position because all of us committed to serve our country. We were all taught the same core values and are held to the same standards.

The extra years of personal life experience should be an advantage for me because I feel like I may be better prepared to handle many different situations.




All of this week's top headlines to your email every Friday.


 
 

 
(U.S. Air Force Photo by Airman 1st Class Chris Massey)

9/11 Tower Challenge held at UofA

The Never Forgotten 9/11 Tower Challenge was held at the University of Arizona Football Stadium on Sept. 11. Approximately 350 participants, including personnel from D-M, attempted the challenge of climbing 2,071 stairs. This f...
 
 

Core elements work together

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — The Air Force has built a suicide prevention program based on 11 overlapping core elements that stress community involvement and leadership in the prevention of suicides in the military: Leadership involvement — Air Force leaders actively support the entire spectrum of suicide prevention initiatives in the community. Addressing suicide...
 
 

Keep sports safe

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Playing sports is fun and it helps people keep in shape and relieve stress. However, if one is not careful, playing sports can result in injuries that keep Airmen on the sideline and out of work. “The main cause of sports-related injuries is over aggressive play and people going...
 

 
DoD

Ice bucket challenge – What does DOD say?

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — If you have been following social media lately, you’ve seen the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge all over your newsfeed and Instagram. This has become an internet phenomenon in which people get doused with ice water to raise money to combat Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis, also known as Lou Gehrig’s disease....
 
 

Air Force Enlisted Village: Not just a place to live, a place to call home

I first visited the Air Force Enlisted Village as a young first sergeant in 2009, when I was stationed at Tyndall Air Force Base, Florida. I went to visit with the Tyndall Active Airmen’s Association, Tyndall’s E-1 to E-4 Professional Association, and was amazed at what I saw. This was also the first time I...
 
 

Advise Airmen of rights before asking questions

LUKE AIR FORCE BASE, Ariz. — Every day supervisors are faced with challenging scenarios and situations that require them to engage in efforts to help their Airmen. When this engagement is due to a negative act such as theft, damage to property or other possible legal violations, we must resist the instinct to question them...
 




0 Comments


Be the first to comment!


Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

You may use these HTML tags and attributes: <a href="" title=""> <abbr title=""> <acronym title=""> <b> <blockquote cite=""> <cite> <code> <del datetime=""> <em> <i> <q cite=""> <strike> <strong>


Directory powered by Business Directory Plugin