Tuesday, January 31, 2006

Yes, Forest, life is like a box of chocolates. Yum!

Sometime during the beginning of December, my life totally flipped upside down. No matter how hard I tried, it seemed I was fighting a uphill battle to gain any significance in what I was doing with my life. I still had no real clue what I wanted to do with my life, even though I was extremely successful showing and training show horses. I had a huge clientele base, lots of riding lesson students, and I was working out of a decent facility. I was extremely successful with my job, but I was not doing a good job of making myself happy.

One of my biggest flaws is that I go above and beyond the call of duty. This seems honorable, but when there is little to be gained in return for all of my hard work and sacrifice, it slowly became intolerable. This in turn builds resentment and unhappiness, and when it is intertwined with a 24/7+ job that is always feast or famine, one rightfully deserves to be cranky. I am the first person that will bend over backwards to help anyone, but when nothing is ever reciprocated it seems pointless.

The horse industry is tough and cut-throat. Everyone seems to be out to help you, but in fact a majority are just waiting for the opportunity to stab you in the back so they can take out the opposition. This can be seen everywhere from the backyard and 4-H shows through national level competition. Granted, not everyone is like this in the horse world, but I have a whole lifetime of experience that supports my feeling that wearing boots to ride horses in has more to do with all of the sh*t that gets deep versus keeping your foot from sliding through the stirrup.

My resentment had been building up during the 6 years after high school that I had been training horses while trying to finish college. I was getting "one Bud wiser" while out with some dear friends I had not seen in a long time, and I suddenly had an epiphany. My very passion (my horses/riding), had turned into something that I loathed dealing with everyday. That very night I decided that I would make a drastic change and try to make myself happy for once. Damn it I had to figure out a way to finish my nursing degree so that I could use my own horses as therapy again.

The very next day I took my two weeks vacations and gave my two weeks notice. It felt good. I moved my horses to my house, and as I watched them proudly prance around the pasture, tails flagged, I knew that I had made a good choice.
Enlisting in the military was something that I had wanted to do right out of high school, but a lot of people said that I was too smart (I was a straight A honor student) and should just go straight to college. Retrospectively, this probably was a good decision, because now I am better prepared for what lies ahead.


Anonymous wiley84 said...

Why did you decide to join the national guard? Aren't you scared of being deployed? The guard is being over used.

11:08 AM  
Anonymous parker said...

Good luck, and congratulations on your decision.

11:11 AM  
Blogger Cowgirl said...

Being deployed is something that all ARNG will eventually be faced with. I would much rather face threats head on before we are attacked on U.S. soil again. I think that a lot of people have forgotten about 9/11 - not entirely, but to a degree that the boost of patriotism that was brought on by that tragedy has been washed away by soaring gasoline prices and misconceptions of what is actually being done in Iraq.
The ARNG is at least 40% of this nation's forces deployed (according to the last I had heard). Although I think that we need enough troops home to take care of problems on U.S. soil, I also believe that it is pertinent that we continue to fight the war on terrror.
I would much rather have guardmembers fighting terror in Iraq than fighting terror here in the U.S. I'll get off my soap box... for now.

2:34 PM  
Blogger CML said...

Good for you! Congratulations on making what I am sure was a difficult choice. There will be many people who will ask you "Why?" or "What were you thinking?" Those are the ones that don't "get it". But they -- more than those of us who do get it -- are the reason you and so many others choose to serve and protect.

11:57 AM  
Blogger Major John said...

Welcome aboard! I am glad you are joinging us. I wasn't quite as thoughtful as you were before signing up - but 21 years later I don't regret it.

10:35 AM  

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