Reflections of a 2014 Parent......

Discussion in 'Merchant Marine Academy - USMMA' started by Treemantwo, Dec 7, 2013.

  1. Treemantwo

    Treemantwo 5-Year Member

    May 28, 2009
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    The journey has been long and hard.....with deep valleys and great highs and I felt sharing my thoughts might inspire those in the infant stage or further motivate those who are nearing the top of the mountain.
    My son graduated HS in 2009 with nearly everything he needed to earn his appointment to the USMMA. He had great grades, extracurricular activities, letters of recommendation and the most important ingredient; HEART ! He had two more things not quite on the list of " must haves".....tubes in both his ears ! The tubes were removed, but not in time to be member of the class of 2013. My son made the mature decision to turn down a great offer to attend an Upstate engineering college, and do a " do-over " and attend a prep school for a 5th year of high school. Yes, we self- prepped, putting all our chips on the table to make a dream a reality. I visited this site on a daily basis and absorbed and contributed with the hope that WE would get it right this time.
    He exceeded anyone's expectations while at this prep school and when that thin envelope arrived I held it up to the light and cried. Yeah, really !
    That day our family dropped him off for INDOC was somewhat surreal. That kboy I had thought was a "man" entered with a duffle bag that appeared bigger than him and the look of a lamb being lead to slaughter. The transformation of the "man" began 40 minutes later with him running, gear in hand, at the other end of the building. We all had tears in our eyes ! His thoughts of playing lacrosse and hockey soon gave way to the reality of the rigors and demands soon to be faced and a new focus emerged.
    The highs and lows he has experienced the last 3+ years are what make him what he is today....right now....and I couldn't be prouder ! A decision to switch from deck to engine was probably the greatest hurdle. He's a Firstclassman, getting great grades and playing hockey. I think he's even having fun now ! One great job offer. Though the journey has a few more mountains to climb the summit is in sight.
    If this is what you want then you must never give up and offer 100% for 4 years. Think of what you can contribute to the Academy, not just what you'll
    be leaving with. Be prepared to convince yourself that a civilian college and the thought of MAYBE graduating with a good job offer aren't good enough. Convince yourself that anything else would be just settling and no matter how difficult it gets the rewards will be tenfold.

    One Proud Parent !
  2. Maplerock

    Maplerock Proud to be an American

    Jan 31, 2013
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    What a great story!

    You had me prepared to hear about your son's disappointment with that thin white envelope comment... but that was your notification that a BFE was coming!

    You have a wonderful story and are an inspiration to many. Best wishes to you and your son as he closes out this chapter of his life. What types of jobs is he considering?
  3. Huskie_USMMA2017

    Huskie_USMMA2017 Member

    Mar 27, 2013
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    Thank you for sharing!
  4. mamaharpnj

    mamaharpnj mamaharpnj

    Aug 17, 2013
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    Thanks for sharing your story and congrats to your son. It has reminded me that, though this waiting to hear game is very difficult, the hopeful end result is well worth the wait!

    Sent using the Service Academy Forums® mobile app
  5. jasperdog

    jasperdog 5-Year Member

    Jul 25, 2009
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    Great post! and Good Luck to your DS on License Exams and the final homestretch to graduation in June. It really does just keep getting better for them going forward. Watching our DS and his Class of 2012 Classmates these past ~18 months has been pretty awesome too though without some of the amplitude of the roller coaster the prior 4 years had.
  6. KP2013dramamama

    KP2013dramamama 5-Year Member

    Jul 11, 2009
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    Yes, indeed the next months will go by very quickly. Our journey from a parents' point of view were very much the same as yours. Our DS in now in his first job after graduation. It can take up to 6-8 months for 100% of the graduating class to be employed. We are very grateful for the schooling and opportunities for growth and leadership he had. I have met some men and women I KNOW I can call anytime, years from now too, and pick up where we last left off. Enjoy these months and celebrate every step closer your dd/ds makes to ringing that bell and walking across the stage for graduation! I bet you'll rank the experience right up there with getting married and having your babies.

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