Posted by katieinthehall
I’m the kind of person who usually lives in the present and occasionally looks to the future; to make the best plans possible. Occasionally, I’ll look to the past and study the changes that have happened, and lately I’ve been thinking about my time in grad school in Virginia. Looking back now, I consider it my dark period. Having moved to another state, just married, with the struggles of making new friends, and the pressure of school, I had a huge problem with saying “No”.
As I’ve mentioned before, I was someone who kept to himself a lot, and I would often avoid people. Looking back now, it was sad to see myself say “No” repeatedly to invitations from fellow classmates to BBQ parties and the like. During the four years in Virginia, we did very little besides work and study.
All of that began to change when we moved to Memphis. Leaving grad school behind, I began to gain confidence and respect for myself. I opened up, broke out of my shell, and began to say “Yes” to more things. Friends: “Hey, I know you just got home from a long day at work, and are just sitting in your pajamas watching TV on a Tuesday evening, but we’re at the pub down the road and wanted to know if you could make it out?” In years past, I would come up with some excuse, but not anymore, now I say “let me get some shoes on, and some pants, and I’ll be on my way”.
Yesterday I said “Yes” to something else. Recently we made new friends with a soon to be Air Force pilot, who is also a flight instructor with a local company. When I found this out, I told him about my enthusiasm for planes, and how I’ve spent countless hours playing flight sim games. He offered to set me up with an introductory flight, and I was grinning from ear-to-ear with the possibility of having my hands at the controls. However, he told me that I had to schedule the flight soon, as he was leaving to return to the Air Force flight school which would last a couple of years.
From my previous experience, I would have used that exception to come up with some excuse not to take him up on his offer. I would have forgotten, or just let time pass by, thinking that there were other chances to do this. But I’m not that person anymore. I scheduled the flight and flew a Cessna 172, and boy was that “Yes” rewarding!
It may have been only a 30-minute flight, in perfect conditions, but I had my adrenaline going full blast. From taking off, to doing three stall, and a zero-g maneuvers, my shirt was soaking wet with sweat. It was intense, and even after having taken Dramamine; I did end up using the airsickness bag (I usually don’t handle motion sickness well). But in the end, it was a once in a lifetime experience I couldn’t, and didn’t pass up.
Lesson learned: try saying “Yes” a little more than “No”.
Have a great week everyone!