Remembering When

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by ssdmmf, Jul 6, 2012.

  1. ssdmmf

    ssdmmf Member

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    Saw a photo in Newsday this morning of INDOC....thought back to DS (2 yrs ago now...) he was super hot, super nervous.....and the first one to pass out ( :) )-male or female....good for a chuckle now:)
     
  2. KP2013dramamama

    KP2013dramamama Member

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    Ah, yes. I remember and look back with awe at all that happened that year and the next 2 afterwards. The first year was the hardest for me. (Grocery shopping was a despressing event since he was the last to leave home). But when ds (dear son) said he was happy and couldn't see himself anywhere else, we relaxed. I found the first year unnerving b/c we didn't have much to tell how things were really going. Phone calls and emails were few and far between. Skype priviledges were long in coming. Parents of 2013 were glued to the live cam on campus (no longer there) during home meal times to get a glimpse of our kids. This forum was our addiction and support system. Then we learned of funny youtube videos we could look at, and we still do for fun! Welcome families. Please take advantage of this forum and don't just stay in your 2016 Facebook page!
     
  3. Navy4ever

    Navy4ever Member

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    Okay..

    KP2013dramamama...we won't just stay on the 2016 FB page:shake:
     
  4. KP2013dramamama

    KP2013dramamama Member

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    Good to hear that! Welcome to you and your family and please encourage others to stay in touch here too! Otherwise there could be more :bang: by trying to figure it out things on your own) or :rant2:. Instead use the :angel:s who are here and do a little:beer1: and :wiggle: to celebrate!:shake:
     
  5. Navy4ever

    Navy4ever Member

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    LOL...where is the "like" button??:thumb:
     
  6. MarinerMom2011

    MarinerMom2011 Member

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    Our DS graduated in 2011 and I agree that one of the things I still miss is that web cam on the Grinder. It would be nice if it was on during Indoc. I would also try and watch to see them march in during lunch muster.
     
  7. KP2013dramamama

    KP2013dramamama Member

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    Thanks Navy4ever for the compliment. When I first saw my son at Parents Weekend in 09, I thought he'd been taken away in a:spacecraft: Seriously the dude was sleep deprived. Not everyone was like that, scared the bejeezuz out of me, but he made it through. i do remember him coming home at Christmas Plebe year and I was rehearsing a play at church. I got out of rehearsal at 3:45 pm on Saturday afternoon. Our son had gone to bed at Friday 9:00 pm the night before.......you got it......I called to see how his day had gone and he'd just gotten up....yep almost 17 hours of sleep. Oh the memories!:smile:
     
  8. tambogo

    tambogo Member

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    newbie parent to USMMA

    So, I'm a wreck. My son just finished day 17 of indoc yesterday and his phone call was pretty bleak to say the least. He has always been so strong and no nonsense and just plugs on. His tone last night was dejection and no sense relief from surviving indoc stating that it will not get any better from here mom. Very few words from him. Needing encouragement, it does get better right??? So not used to hearing him speak like that.

    btw, who are the alphas during plebe year, upperclassmen??

    Thanks in advance
     
  9. kpbaseballmom

    kpbaseballmom Member

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    In some ways life does get harder after INDOC. While the Plebe Candidates are no longer getting yelled at as much or going through so much physical activity, the "fire hose" academics are about to start. Any student who now sits back on their heels is going to be in trouble. The PC must ask for help with a subject immediately. The coursework moves so fast that a student can get behind very, very quickly, especially with physics and calculus.

    Parents have to keep encouraging their children and drive home the point that everyone needs to ask for help at some point during their time at KP. These engineering and science courses, which have a semester's worth of information fit into a trimester, can undo even the strongest student. And there is no switching to a history or economics major!
     
  10. julieannreed

    julieannreed mom

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    I am NOT a very knowledgeable USMMA parent so I can't answer your question about the "alpha" but I can say that things should look up a bit this week for your DS. There is a lot going on so the upperclassmen are distracted by the start of classes, getting back with their closest friends, etc. and the plebes will have some moments when they are not being "pounded" by upperclassmen and regimental duties. There will probably be at least one more time that he says, "this is a bunch of crap", to you. It may be when his bed is torn apart for no reason and he is so tired or it may be when he feels that he can't keep up in physics or calculus. My DS is a third son and all three have been discouraged during their first year of college and all went to different schools (Div I public, Div III private, and the academy). By the way, if your DS is complaining about things, that means he is starting to fit in nicely. I find that the USMMA takes pride in and likes to vocalize that life at the academy is not a piece of cake. Maybe he is just repeating what others are telling him about it not getting easier but is really ready for the tasks ahead. Keep listening to him and know that ultimately his decisions are his and that all you can do is help him lay out his options and then, of course, tell him to buck up.
     
  11. tambogo

    tambogo Member

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    thanks so much!!! He did tell me before starting indoc to not let him wallow in self pity and tell him to "SUCK IT UP." That came in my letter I wrote this morning :) I'm hopeful that football and classes will be his outlet as he is very intense and actually loves math and physics. This too shall pass... P.S. So glad to know what DS and DD mean now LOL
     
  12. jasperdog

    jasperdog Member

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    tambogo: I sent you a Private Message. Also for those new to the forum I offer the following on my thoughts about Plebe Year:

    "Year One At Kings Point in 8 Easy Phases"

    http://www.serviceacademyforums.com/showthread.php?t=20218

    My general thought and belief is Plebe Year, especially can seem at times to you as endless as you go through it and breaking it up into shorter phases, which really do apply, can help make it more bearable.

    Lastly as I said in my PM, never underestimate how a) over-tired you son or daughter is, and also how at times they might feel or be under-nourished if they didn't like what was for dinner last night, etc. Both of these things just make the emotions and moods (up or down) all the more visible and pronounced. Plebe year is very stressful and hard, that's why the retention/success rate is what it is historically - and keep in mind - these are all great, highly motivated young men and women.

    Hang in there everyone the coaster has just passed the first peak and will now begin speeding even faster towards the finish of the first circuit...
     
  13. kpskilegac

    kpskilegac Member

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    Jasperdog is always a wealth of good information so listen carefully to his thoughts. The link he posted is great.

    Most of your kids have been at the top of the heap through high school, top students, top athletes and so on. Now they are in a class where everyone was the top of the heap so it can be worrisome for them to think they may not succeed. That self doubt can be a killer. This is probably the first time they have experienced something like INDOC and after seeing how difficult it was along with what they have been told to anticipate, they may be pretty frightened about what's to come. As others have said before, they need to ask for help the minute they think they are having difficulty. In addition, they have to budget their time, study whenever they can and not get too involved in the regimental stuff- like staying up all night polishing their shoes without studying for the Calc test. As silly as it sounds, it happens.

    Breaking things down into small segments is really the key to survival; sometimes it's I can make it through this hour of class, not just this day. Taking things one step at a time will be key for them.

    They are exhausted, sleep deprived, most likely hungry and homesick. Even if they've been away before, this is an experience like no other. So when they sound like crap on the phone, encourage them, tell them to hang in, to get help and to find the smartest guy in their section and study with him/her. They will build tremendous bonds and will bolster each other going forward.

    It's tough not to worry about them and their potential success of heaven forbid - failure, but if you can continue to encourage them you may be what helps them get through the day. Also when they call and tell you they got a D or C and you know they've never had one of those before, tell them to do their best and get some help. D is DONE and while I don't recommend you tell your kids a D is OK, sometimes that's as good as it gets and they need to make sure they are doing well in other subjects to keep that GPA above a 2.0.

    The roller coaster has started and even as the years go by, it doesn't get much easier so hang in, don't let them know you're worried, keep the encouragement coming, send mail and care packages and be prepared to see a new kid on acceptance day.
     
  14. jasperdog

    jasperdog Member

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    To Lighten the Mood and In the "Remembering When" Vein of the thread title ...

    I'm struck by wondering if my just graduated son didn't occasionally get over the rough spots by at least occasionally thinking: "If that numbskull of a Dad of mine can get through this place, I for holy sam ought to be able to when I think about things like the (in retrospect) funniest moment of my own Plebe Year ....

    Picture, if you will, a totally cocky "B" of a kid, who had no concept of what it meant to "fly under the radar" - one of two guys in his section caught actually laughing during BOTH multiple "plebe beats" (no longer done as far as I know) and drill instruction on Barney Square during Indoc the Summer of 1978 .... Get's through that and EVERYBODY on the midshipman regimental staff and multiple teachers knows his face and his uncommon last name. Now it's a mid-week September 1978 at a Class right after lunch - in those days only one classroom building had A/C and this wasn't that building. We had the still infamous Delano Hall "Z-Brugers" for lunch, our section had the then famous and unforgettable Captain Arnold for Plebe English right after lunch on this day. It must have been about 10-15 minutes in the class, I awake with a rectangular imprint of of chalk blackboard eraser on the side of my head, in a cloud/haze of chalk dust to the unforgettable, tenor of Capt. Arnold's voice saying: "wake that bird, up will you guys... <Last Name> you need to stand up the rest of the class, son you do it..." He swivels on his heels goes back to the board and resumes teaching. <sheepish grin of large proportions goes across my face and I and my classmates chuckle quietly at the large chalk imprint on the side of my head, etc.> <minutes pass, I'm still standing - I'm dense but not totally stupid> Capt. Arnold's Tenor Voice returns to filling the room <Okay, since you're already standing <Last Name> why don't you read what you did for last night's assignment for us?" <hilariously/ironically/appropriately, I read the prior day's assignment where-in we had to have written - you guessed it, the stereotypical college english assignment of the day - our own own obituary.>

    I also live with the knowledge that come this fall at our 30th Class Reunion at least one if not more of my section-mates will recall the story and laugh with me about it.

    Ah yes - remembering when - Phase 2 of the Class of 1982's Plebe Year... seems at times both eons ago as well as just yesterday...
     
    Last edited: Jul 23, 2012
  15. MumKP2015

    MumKP2015 Member

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    Jasperdog, Great Story! Also your steps to get through Plebe year really helped last year.
     
  16. Lynpar

    Lynpar Member

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    Wanting for the 8 easy steps of 3rd class year. What have you got? :shake:

    A thought for the struggling Mom, if your DS is blessed in math and sciences his stock is going to rise and fast. He may find himself helping others around him and that may make all the difference. There are a lot of big personalities and lots of testosterone and postering going on right now. I remember DS saying "there are a bunch of a-holes here" ( nice, just what a mom wants to hear) It settles down. He will be placed in an academic group where he will attend classes wth the same people. He will become a part of the football team and that schedule will likely be familiar. A schedule and knowing what is comming next at least in some areas of his daily life may also make things seem a little better. Best wishes and keep us posted. My best advice to him would be to find someone he can help.
     
  17. MarinerMom2011

    MarinerMom2011 Member

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    Once classes start the PC's will have classes in sections based on what their decision is whether to go deck or engine. They will have most of their classes with the same group of midshipmen throughout the next 4 years. They will form close friendships with some and will also discover what study group they need to be in to get through the ups and downs of KP. Our DS was always upbeat and just took all of it in stride. He found out pretty quick that time management was of the utmost importance. He also found that he had to study a lot more than high school. Chemistry was also another class that tripped up some of the PC's.
     
  18. kpskilegac

    kpskilegac Member

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    tips for 3rd class year

    Lynpar- You are too funny!!! tips for 3rd class year - more of the same. STUDY, STUDY, STUDY......and stay out of trouble. Those few extra privileges they earn by stepping up one rung on the ladder can get some of them into big trouble if they press the boundaries. And SEA PROJECTS- do them, do them early and don't be afraid to ask for help, even on the ship. Good Luck to your DS. One down, three to go!
     
  19. poksman

    poksman Member

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    I read on this forum for 2 years that Indoc was the easy part and what comes after is so much harder. DS did not seem to feel that way and talked about never, ever wanting to do anything like Indoc again.
    But, during his 3rd year, back from sea a little late, catching up on classes that already started, preparing for tests on sea projects and the oral exam on all of sea year, he lamented how easy Indoc was because you don't have to think. You are told what to do every minute of the day so you have no decisions to make, no priorities to figure out, and you get a full nights sleep!
    It's all about perspective!
     
  20. tambogo

    tambogo Member

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    Lynpar,

    That's exactly what my Ds is saying, that they are all a-holes, LOL. He is doing better since classes started. And fortunately he is blessed in Math and Science, at least he has been all through high school, we'll see how that 3/day calc class goes. He told me "mom, why didn't you tell me to play dumb on the placement tests so I wouldn't get put in the harder classes." Tonight company 4 is being punished because in his words, "some tool was fooling around in a room instead of doing his walk around watch." they were doing push ups every hour until bed time. Hate to be that "tool."
     

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