The Navy was one of the BEST things that ever happened in my life. If you read my earlier posts, you know why I joined the Navy. But why is only part of the story. I learned really early in my Navy experience that I really found a place and an organization, that I liked and that liked me. And, if you can work in a career that you enjoy and that likes you too, your life is going to be much happier! I tell young people this all the time. I like to tell my Navy experiences, good, bad, and humorous, to anyone who will listen. I hope they enjoy my stories too.
Yes, the positive influences of my parents and family were the strong under pinning. But I have seen many young people with wonderful nurturing make terrible messes of their lives as adults. No, to succeed as an adult you must continue in the teachings of your family and find friends and co-workers that support those moral imperatives. In other words, we must make life choices that help us succeed, not help us fail.
The Navy is all about respect. That is respect for the rules, for each other, and for yourself! Of course, any team requires mutual respect to even begin to succeed. When the team succeeds, there is reward. That reward can be intrinsic or extrinsic. Otherwise, a hearty "Well Done" or a promotion! Both are important. Of course, if you do not respect yourself, you cannot respect others. People who purposely damage their bodies will not respect the rules of the organization. I'm not talking about minor infractions. I am talking about thing that leave a scar! And I will tell you, it is easier to cause scaring today than when I was 18! Then there is the resolve component. Life is made up of "Life Decisions". We as individuals must resolve to accomplish our goals. We have the opportunity to "Choose" our path. If you don't decide to succeed, you won't! It's that simple.
The Navy taught me these three important factors and that stuck with me, forever. I still live by these factors. They help me fight the effects of Lewy Body Dementia. That's right, I apply what the Navy taught me to my life, all of my life.
So, while I joined the Navy under some less than normal conditions, the Navy took someone who was beginning a negative life decisions chain and turned me into someone who could and did make positive life decisions. The Navy built upon what my parents taught me! Did I make some mistakes, read yesterday's blog and you will understand that I have. But if we learn from our mistakes, they are not negative but positive life lessons. It's like sticking a hair pin in a light socket. If you survive that mistake, your bound NOT to repeat it!
So, in closing, there were three positive events that changed my life into a positive, wonderful, experience. They are, enlisting in the United States Navy, marrying my wonderful wife, and accepting Jesus Christ as my personal savior. Without any of these three defining moments, I would not be the person I am today. Yes, there were individual experiences within each of these major events, but they contribute to the adult influences in my life. And now, you know the rest of the story.
P.S. What lesson did I learn in New York? Don't drink vodka and seven while eating dry roasted peanuts! Later in life I learned that guacamole dip cause me gastrointestinal problems too. But that's another story.