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cadet blogs

The Gifts We Don’t See

(Choosing the Coast Guard Academy, Class of 2014) Permanent link   All Posts
Lukasik Photo Lately I’ve taken to the practice of conducting this blog in the same way I conduct myself in class (probably as much to our web information director’s dismay as to my instructors’). Generally speaking, I don’t speak much or often unless I have something that I feel is particularly important to say. Perhaps I’m too shy for my own good; perhaps if I were less hesitant, I would “stand out” more. But what I have found is that when I commit myself to holding my tongue (or in this case, my pen, or word-processor) under general circumstances, when I do speak out, people listen much better. I think they understand that if I’m permitting myself to speak out, it’s because I’ve put significant enough time and reflection into a thought that it’s one worthwhile to consider.


And so, for the first time in a few months, I have something to say: we are blessed beyond words.


The magnitude and extent of the opportunities and gifts bestowed upon us here at the Academy is easy to lose track of sometimes, especially in these long winter months of the “Dark Ages,” when we’ve just returned from leave and have to get back to the grind. I must admit, this term I was incredibly apprehensive coming back. With a Directed Study and a Fulbright application in my academic schedule; a number of still-healing stress injuries impeding my athletic performance, with Triathlon Collegiate Nationals fast approaching; new and daunting leadership challenges in several clubs and as a department Master at Arms; and the various other new challenges the new year brings, the semester looked to be a frightful thing. Recalling, both the incredible experiences and triumphs but also the monumental fatigue my classmates and I faced collectively and individually last semester, it’s no wonder that I initially approached this new year with a bit of uncertainty. Is it really worth all this work? I’ve sometimes wondered. When I sometimes lose grip on what “it” is that I’m striving for, I wonder even more…


But yes – in short – “it” is absolutely worth it.


It’s sad that sometimes we forget just how good we have it until we’re exposed to the hardships that we, personally, do not have to face; we forget how fortunate we are, until we see face to face the misfortunes we’re shielded from.

The Gifts We Don’t See (Continued) PDF Icon  


More about Jessie.