I’m usually make a conscious effort to not buy into any of the trending fads on social media such as the most recent one: Top 9 of 2019. I guess it’s just my way of making myself think that I’m just not another cog in the machine. It gives me some sort of reassurance that I’m different, even just a little bit. I know that sounds dumb, but that’s just the way I am.
That being said, I do think it is important to reflect on certain times of your life. To see where you came from and how far you’ve came to get where you are. So, I decided to make a blog post about the momentous decade that the 2010’s were for me.
The 2010’s, I think, will be the decade that defines much of my life. Most of that, I’m sure has to do with the fact that most of my 20’s were spent in this decade. So naturally, I made a lot of important decisions in the last 10 years.
I started out this decade one year removed from high school and very much not sure where I wanted to go from there. I was in a relationship with a girl since 11th grade and we were living together. I had a job at a factory where I was working a mix of daytime and night schedules.
From here, I decided I wanted to enroll in the Conservatory of Recording Arts & Sciences in Tempe, Arizona. Now, I’m from Arkansas and had never lived outside of the town that I grew up in at that point in my life. So, this was a big decision for me especially at 19 years old. I remember sitting out on the sidewalk with my dad and deciding that that is what I wanted to do. Travel across the country in pursuit of what was my dream job at the time.
So, I went. I drove across the country with my girlfriend. No friends, no jobs, nothing. It was only about a month there that my girlfriend at the time decided that that life was not for her and she left to go back home to Arkansas. That was the end of that chapter with her in my life, but I decided that I needed to keep pursuing this dream. This decision was one of the most important of my life, I think, as it instilled kind of this thought in the back of my head to never compromise your dream for someone. Obviously, this goes both ways and sacrifices will have to be made in life, but I don’t think you should ever give up on a dream because of someone else.
Nevertheless, now that I was alone in Arizona, I was forced to come out of my shell and make friends and it was some of the best memories I have from this decade.
I dove head first into a group of friends that would help me make it through that next year or two. Looking back now it seems like so long ago, but I look back on those times with fondness.
From there, the group split off and went their own ways. The school had an internship program, where you picked the city that you wanted to do your internship. Me and two of my other friends chose Nashville, TN. Here, I would quickly find out that get into the music studio business would not be easy.
I got an internship at Blackbird Studio in Nashville. It didn’t do much to put me in a position to further my career, but I had so many good times and saw so many cool people that I can hardly complain about the experience.
While there I got to meet/see Lionel Richie, The Fray, Evanescence, Kid Rock, The Punch Brothers, Lenny Kravitz, and I’m sure I’m missing some. While here, I was also juggling two jobs before eventually moving back to Arkansas after a year and a half in Nashville with no luck finding a job in the studio business.
In Arkansas, I was back to living with my dad and got a job working with him as an electrician. I was never a fan of doing electrical work (I had done it during the summers while in high school), but it paid good and I needed a job. It lasted about 6 months before I decided to join the Air Force after my brother had joined the Navy. We were renovating the airport in Little Rock where everyday I would see planes taking off from the nearby Air Force Base. I thought that it would be so cool to be a part of that.
This would be the decision that would open up my world more than I ever thought it would. From basic in San Antonio, TX, training in Biloxi, MS, my first duty station in South Korea, second duty station in Italy, and now at my third in Hawaii. I’ve been able to meet so many people and see so many places along the way.
I’ve walked the streets of Seoul, witnessed the beauty of The Great Wall of China, seen Venice, Rome, the Amalfi Coast. I’ve travelled to Paris, Barcelona, London, Dublin, Brussels, Bruges, Antwerp, Copenhagen, Tromso, Amsterdam, Ljubljana, Bucharest, Brasov, Cluj-Napoca, Zermatt, Tokyo, Kyoto, Hiroshima, Osaka, Cairns, Sydney, Melbourne, Honolulu, Prague, and Krakow.
I’ve gotten to see so much of the world and I’m so thankful for that. Since joining the military in 2013, I’ve travelled to 19 different countries and by the end of 2020 it will be 23 or 24.
2010-2019 was the decade where I decided who I was going to be in this life. I decided that when I want to do something, I’m going to do it. I lived that this decade and I want to keep living that in the next decade.
Even in my job now, I feel I’m stagnant at the moment. But, I’m working on my writing, which is my next big goal in life: to publish my stories. I am constantly looking for things to do in life because I don’t want to be on my death bed with a thought of “What if?”. I want to know I lived my life to the fullest potential. So, even though I’m stagnant in my job right now, I have a trip to Vietnam coming up where I can maybe do some good in someone else’s life.
But that’s enough about me. This decade has had it’s ups and downs, but when there are more ups than downs you still end up on top. That’s my position in life right now: on top.