Creativity as define by Google is “the use of imagination or original ideas, especially in the product of an artistic work”. In the other hand motivation is “the general desire or willingness of behaving in a particular way.” When motivation and creativity are mended together the results become inspirational. My inspiration to grow and change my life around came about as an outcome of my lowest point in my life. With that said allow me to take you back to deployment 2015-2016.
I can still taste the saltiness of the wind as it was carried throughout the ship; The USS Oak Hill. This was it, the moment I had been waiting for my whole Navy career. My opportunity to travel. But by the time deployment was lurking around the corner I had lost all excitement. In fact, I was dreadful. I was separated from my boyfriend and my friends. Three different ships and I alone on one, except for a group of people I worked with and that included someone who had been harassing me for awhile.
The day had arrived and I was finally at sea. Now imagine being embarked on a ship with approximately 900 people unable to see land or communicate with friends or family back at home for periods of time. But for me the isolation didn’t only end there. I was placed in a berthing (sleeping/living area) with 7 other females. The highest ranking personnel was a second class, E-5. During the next few days the girls started to socialize and interact with one another but I decided to keep my distance due to the fact that the female who had been harassing me quickly became everyone’s friend and I didn’t want to associate with her. Shortly after, people began to question why I wouldn’t communicate or interact with anyone. Due to my lack of social interaction a rumor started spreading around by the females I was currently living with and from there on I was known as the girl who thought too highly of herself to even bother to speak to anyone. When in reality I was only wishing for someone to approach me. Many were the nights were I sat alone on the flight deck contemplating the idea of disappearing.
New Years came along and we were in port. I was drained and tired of everything but regardless of how much I kept my distance the name callings wouldn’t stop. I allowed my anger to take control and I went off on them. The following day, New Years Eve, I got in trouble in respect of my “disrespect to my higher ups”. As punishment I wasn’t allowed to get off the ship and I had to stand a 12 hour watch. I felt very wronged since it seemed as if I was being punished for standing up for myself.
Many other incidents took place during that time frame but I won’t elaborate on them except for one more; my turning point. Before I continue I just want to point out that by this time around my self esteem was very low.
I had been studying for my advancement exam for months now. I was pretty nervous but felt confident since I had really studied the material. The morning of my exam, Second Class Y came up to me. ” oh, hey Bonilla I just wanted to apologize”, she said. I stared at her blankly unaware of what she meant so I gave no response. “Oh, so you didn’t hear us last night?” I nodded “no” . “Well, we were talking mess about you. We were saying that it doesn’t matter how much you study you will never advance, but any who I’m sorry”. And with that she retracted her steps and walked away. I was on my way to the 2nd deck to take my test but at that moment all I managed to do was to turn around and flop back in bed as my tears began to flow down my face. I just couldn’t comprehend how females older than I and higher ranking than me acted so childish and rather than mentoring me which is what a leader is suppose to do instead would bring me down.
Deployment was difficult on me but during those times I learned to appreciate God. I consider my life a form of art, for in the mist of darkness I saw beauty. Those nights spent alone in the dark I witness a multitudes of stars. The massive ocean and the beautiful sunset inspired my heart and I began to write. I started to go to the gym and workout to distract myself from the loneliness. I fell in love with fitness and I even managed to lose 29 lbs. This experience allowed me to view the world differently and I discovered with in myself a passion for writing and fitness. I do not regret joining the military for all those events ultimately led to the decision that has me standing here today. My mind was made up and after my 4 year contract I got out. I am a 3 month old veteran whom is now attending school with everything paid for. I am working on getting my Associated Degree in Science and Liberal Arts while pursuing a career as a Dental Hygienist. I am determined to accomplish all the goals I have set up for myself.