Monday, July 14, 2014
The First Post-BMT Drill
This weekend, I was privileged to attend my first Air National Guard drill weekend as an Airman in uniform. Man, that felt good! I had attended our wing's UTA's (UTA = uniform training assembly = drill) for five months prior to leaving for Basic Training, but it was different because I was part of Student Flight (where I learned what BMT was all about) and in my civilian clothes—where I felt as though I stuck out like a sore thumb. It was so much better to be at drill in ABU's... so much better.
Since I haven't received my formal technical training yet, I assumed I would be a BIT (break-in-training) instructor for Student Flight. Instead, I worked both days over in customer service learning a little bit more about my new job in personnel. I was fortunate to be able to go back and speak to Student Flight on two separate occasions, but I was also glad to spend the majority of the time in my new office. The folks over at customer service are just great. They welcomed me right in—I can't wait to spend drill weekends with them in the future.
I experienced a few highlights this weekend... first, as soon as drill began Saturday morning, I was honored by our wing's Command Chief Master Sergeant and my two new supervisors with a special presentation in front of Student Flight. Our Command Chief said some nice words about me and shared the awards I received in BMT (honor grad, Top Pt, etc) with the future trainees. It was a neat tribute to be a part of... I hadn't had any idea they were going to do something like that! To be recognized by one of the leaders who I look up to the most was so special to me.
Then on Sunday, our Mission Support Group Commander (a Colonel) gave me a special invitation to join him and our First Sergeant at Student Flight to speak about BMT and growing as an airman and person with the Air Force. We all spoke together for over an hour—I was able to share so many of my stories and experiences from BMT—it was great! After the presentation, I was awarded a challenge coin from our First Sergeant in front of my new department—talk about an honor! I feel so blessed to be a part of the 124th Fighter Wing, to be an Airman serving our country, and honestly, to be receiving some positive attention from a few leaders in my chain of command who I truly look up to and deeply respect.
This is only the beginning. While watching the sergeants work away this weekend and all of the people they helped in my new office—I knew it was going to be the right place for me. I have three months until I leave for tech school, and I can't wait to get that training out of the way so I am able to return home and begin my job as a traditional (one weekend a month only) in personnel. I've got some big dreams ahead for my career as an Airman, and I'm so thrilled to finally be getting that journey underway. It's going to be an adventure, I can tell you that. And with each drill, each salute, each day of training, and each step, it becomes more and more of an honor to serve our great country with the Air National Guard. Oh, what a journey it will be!
// MORE SAUCE