Behind the Glass - 1 Transitioning from MIL to CIV

Behind the Glass - 1 Transitioning from MIL to CIV

Transitioning from MIL to CIV

“When your heart is no longer in it, change your path.”

I will never forget when I was a young Private in the Army, my first Squad Leader gave me some great words of wisdom. He was speaking to all of the new Soldiers in our Platoon, actually having a conversation with us instead of just talking at us. We were about 2 months out from our pump to Afghanistan, and most of us in the Brigade had never seen combat.

One of the other lower enlisted guys asked my Squad Leader when he knew he would re-enlist after having 4 deployments already. He looked at us and told us that he still had a love and passion for the job, and if it weren’t for that he would have got out. He said to us “once your heart is no longer in this profession, get out and change your path, or you will be miserable”.

Even though it’s so simple and easy for anyone to think of on their own, hearing someone that you look up to and respect say it hits a little different. I’ve taken that and applied it to my entire life. Whether it has been for good or for bad, it has seemed to work out for me so far.

I found my passion and love for the Army fading around my 5th year in service with 2 left to go. The Army was in a weird transition in 2015 with political agendas and it was affecting the combat arms MOS’ in a negative way. Morale across the board was at a low (from my recollection) and the Military in general seemed to no longer be in “Warfighting” mode as a whole.

After our return from Iraq in January of 2017 I realized my heart was no longer in the Infantry and I remembered what my Squad Leader told me almost 7 years prior and I decided I needed to change my path. I found a way to exit a few months early and go to School. Although I wasn’t sure on what I wanted to exactly do with my life at 26 years old, I did know that I did not want to be in a peacetime Army.

Once I was out, I found myself pursuing some sort of business career as a 26-year-old college freshman. That was short lived, and I found myself somewhere I told myself I would not be… In the Police Academy. Having been to difficult schools in the military, the academy was not something very challenging, but I let my ego aside and powered through the quick 4 months and found a department that was a fit for me. I found an immediate passion for the career field, and it’s hardly felt like “work” since.

A lot of us that have served find ourselves driven to a service type of profession and there is nothing wrong with that. I found what I’m good at and what I now love to do and make a decent living doing it. I will still apply that simple saying to this path as well, but I truly hope that passion never fades, because I refuse to be miserable in my life when I have total control.

-Stay Gooder-

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