Experiences of ROTC
In life, there are so many decisions an individual is supposed to make. Some of these decisions are made on a daily basis while others are made once in a lifetime. The decisions that we make on a daily basis define who we are, especially in terms character and behaviour. When one wakes up every day, there are many routine decisions that he/she makes. First, one should freshen up by taking a shower, brushing teeth, and putting on the best outfit for the day before settling down to take breakfast, and proceed to the assignment of the day. Simple decisions mould a person to become a character that people in the society can identify with, as being neat, smart, punctual, and up to the task. In addition, there are other critical decisions that one must make in life. These decisions have a high impact, especially on the course or angle of direction that one’s life is to take. They bear the greatest responsibilities that have consequences if a wrong decision is made. The repercussions associated with these decisions, when made wrong, are almost permanent because one is filled with regrets that he/she has to live with the rest of his/her life.
When I joined the Reserve Officer Training Corps (ROTC), I wanted to be of great service to my loving country America. When I started attending the ROTC trainings, I realized how important it was to have joined such a government programme just by the happy look on a number of young faces that I saw during the training. Since childhood, I had dreamt of serving in one of the American military forces and for me, at that particular point, it was a dream come true. It meant everything to me and I just wanted to hold on to it until my graduation and possibly the deployment to the field. This was one of the best decisions that I had made in life, until one day things started going wrong and different from how I expected. The trainings became tougher, the training sessions were longer, the tasks and assignments were many, and targets were raised higher. When I could not hold on to the trainings, I decided to let go and I quit. Quitting ROTC was one of my lowest moments in life and I felt like somebody had grabbed out something dear to me in my life. It was very difficult but eventually I had to take it that I had dropped out of ROTC.
Finally, I had to recollect myself altogether and start a new life. While in my new endeavour, I never failed to understand some lessons that I had learnt in ROTC. It was not until very late that I realized how important ROTC had moulded me. It taught me a couple of life lessons that positively steer me ahead. I learnt that in life, nothing good comes easy and the extra effort put in is crucial in determining the level of success that one achieves. I also learnt that when it comes to an end, what counts is whether one has the little effort needed to reach the finish line. Everyone has the power and energy to start-off, but along the way, many people drop off one by one, and soon the group mentality dies off and the finger starts pointing at each individual separately. ROTC helped to sew the fabric that always catapults me to complete the task however hard or difficult it might be, especially if that opportunity comes once. I owe each extra power that I have to ROTC and I thank the programme for that.
ROTC also made me a perfect leader in life. When there was a leadership position in ROTC, I grudgingly grabbed it and later on appreciated the opportunity to be a leader at ROTC. As a leader, one is faced with a number of challenges. This is because one has to carry out or assume some authority that should be exercised to his/her juniors. There are qualities that are linked to leadership. Therefore, leadership is not just skills learnt but it is a character attuned to its ethical responsibility to others. There are many virtues of leadership and the most common are moral courage, deep honesty, compassion and care, fairness, intellectual’s excellence, moral vision, creative thinking, good timing, deep selflessness, and aesthetic sensitivity. ROTC gave me a chance to practice all these virtues, but I was not successful in exercising all of them. However, I did my level best and I still practice them. Leadership helped me understand and appreciate how diverse people are in their thinking and principles. When a decision is passed, not everybody will follow it, there must be some people who will oppose it and as a leader one should always learn to embrace them and not rebuke them. A leader should always help them understand why that decision is important.
The sense of the Good Samaritan presents itself in life and one should be able to grab it because it rarely happens. One day as I was walking down the street, I saw an old lady who was on a wheelchair. She needed someone to help her open the door that was locked in front of her. As people are always busy in towns, everybody seemed to mind his/her own business and just passed this old lady until we met. First, I thought of ignoring her but I sympathized with her and helped her open the door. She followed me with a soft-spoken, “thank you and God bless you.” She greatly smiled at me as she pushed through the door. I had an awesome feeling as she significantly appreciated having helped her. The feeling was so real that as I walked back home that evening, I kept on thinking about it. It was the best moment of the day.