Recruit Journal Bravo 189 Week: 03

Recruit Journal Bravo 189 Week: 03
Formed: October 29, 2013
Graduates: December 20, 2013

International Maritime Signal Flag Bravo

International Maritime Signal Flag Bravo

03 NOV 2013

Everyone looks forward to Fridays. It’s the day of the work week we can’t wait to get to. Racing home to be with our families for a wonderful weekend that never seems long enough. Bravo-189 had nothing remotely close to wonderful.

Friday, November first, was our very own D-Day. The day that made us want to run home and cry. The day we met our Company Commanders. Our four CC’s would wreck the Expendables. I speak for all of us when I say it was the worst weekend of our lives.

This was definitely a weekend we couldn’t wait to end. But we did it. Sunday most of us got assigned company duties such as Company Yeoman, Historian, Squad Leaders, Etc… For now we are individuals. As the days go by we will become one team.

04 NOV2013

As we approach week two, our bodies are finally starting to catch up. I said starting. We didn’t look as silly marching as we initially did. We still look ridiculous. Everyday Bravo-189 learns a new Close Order Drill (COD) movement or two.

If you are wondering what we are doing, 99.9% of the time we are exercising. We are getting our butts kicked, but it’s what we need. The other day, our Lead Company Commander Petty Officer Matthews gave us a brief emotional reminder of why we were here.

We are here to turn ourselves into Coast Guardsmen. He may or may not know it, but we needed to hear it. Today our company was introduced to weight training. Piece of cake compared to our CC workouts.

“Eyes in the Boat” which is a form of remedial instruction rings in our ears as we speak. Some of the Recruits like to smirk or even laugh while in formation. Our CC’s fix that really quick in ways which makes us want to laugh including staff members passing by. Today while marching in formation I held back a smile. A very proud smile. I saw my CC’s on either side of the squad marching with us as usual. This time we were in step and we looked great. We felt like a team. Right then a Coast Guard helicopter flew over us. I don’t think we felt more proud to be right where we are.

Everyone is doing fantastic and everything is coming along great with the help of our CC’s we’ll get there. As we lay our heads to sleep the Coast Guard Values of Honor, Respect, and Devotion to Duty play over and over in our minds like a lullaby.

05 NOV 2013

We have Recruits that are Prior Service and they have all agreed that Coast Guard Boot Camp is more intense. Prior Service from all of the Branches. As soon as we thought we were having a good day we spoke too soon. Since we can’t get our act together, we are paying for it.

Our CC’s don’t want money, they demand sweat and tears. We were tested in the galley on our required knowledge. A few of us choked up. After chow, our CC’s destroyed us. When we returned to James Hall we collected our laundry. We were ordered to pick up one piece of laundry at a time stow them away in our racks, this made us go up and down the ladderwells (stairs) 20+ times, back and forth running. The CC’s are starting to get a feel for people’s weaknesses. They have an incredible ability to analyze each and every one of us.

06 NOV 2013

Fire! Fire! Fire! The first thing we hear in the morning. Our butts are up and standing in formation faster than you can imagine. Today was yet another crazy day. We learned our ranks and ratings and received our pieces. If you don’t know what pieces are they are a demilitarized M-1A rifle. They weigh 9.8 pounds and are our new accessory with Incentive Training, making training much harder. A good portion of our Company was crying during piece incentive training. But we still wouldn’t take any of it back.

Trusting your CC is a very important piece of advice our Chaplain told us. Today we received our mail sent to us. Such a great feeling it is to get mail. Some of our company didn’t get any, but someone within the “Coast Guard Family” sent us encouraging mail. I had one who could have been my mother if I didn’t know any better. We need your mail. It is the glue keeping us together. Spread the word support a Bravo-189 Recruit.

07 NOV 2013

Nights never end and the days in boot camp we are always in a state of motion. Thinking, processing, learning, trying to understand, and live up to this massive concept of being a Coast Guardsman.

Most of us feel like we have swam to far from the shore. But something happened today which put training in a new perspective for us. A fire alarm goes off and we ran outside of the building. A normal drill. The Yeoman then called off our names and declares all present but there’s a problem. The Yeoman forgot our Company’s sign in/out log book. This meant that if someone was missing we wouldn’t know where that person was.

The Fire rescue Team would have to assume that person was in the building. They would be risking their lives for what could be no reason. All because of the incompetence of others. I’m sure that none of us could have a more direct example to accept the difficulty of training. That those whose job it is to save are always in a state of motion. And that Boot Camp never really ends.

08 NOV 2013

We were assigned watches today. So the little sleep we get now just became even less. It’s another challenge that our company will have to overcome in week three. As well as facing the risk of reversion if we can’t spit out required knowledge under pressure. It’s no wonder why week three is the breaking point for some. The training wheels are truly off now. We’re about to get pushed down a hill. We all know most of us have gotten better with situational awareness.

The days seem to go faster now, but we haven’t really made any noticeable progress towards being coast guardsmen. The hard part is that in this stage of training, we’re all being made into putty, molding us into the finished product of Boot Camp. Week three might be equivalent to taking a pile of wet putty, and placing it on a pottery wheel. What might the next weeks be?

09 NOV 2013

Integrity- you either have it or you don’t. Those of us who have held on to our morals and self respect through thick and thin lost it today. Some of us were furious, but with ourselves. How could we? Integrity is needed the most when times get tough. We lost the regards of our CC’s. We Cheated. Integrity is all of the same unconditionally.

Before you freak out too much, we took shortcuts changing in and out of uniform into physical fitness gear. We need to remind each other that integrity is all of the same. Our shipmates need this of each other to succeed in the Coast Guard as well as in life. The moral of the day, is that is better to be trustworthy but late, than early and lying.

Today was an important day for the few who got busted, as well as very much appreciated. Shortcuts are nonexistent from this point on in our life. We thank God for instilling this within ourselves sooner than later.

10 NOV2013

Today was depressing. The Company Commanders stopped training us temporarily and made us stare at a bulkhead (a wall) for a long time. We really suck at this stuff. That afternoon one of our Assistant Company Commanders took us out for what seemed like just his regular routine workout, run a couple miles and then lift some weights. Well… They didn’t really stop training us. At least now we know were bad. They explained that this coming week, week three, will be like our first real test on all of the things were supposed to know. Were probably not ready, but I suppose we’ll find out what were made of….

Editor’s Note: This blog post was written by a recruit currently involved in Coast Guard basic training. The thoughts and opinions expressed in this Journal do not necessarily reflect those of Training Center Cape May, the U.S. Coast Guard or the federal government and are the sole opinion of the author. Recruit Journals are written by personnel in a high-stress environment with little time, so please excuse grammar and punctuation in the above article. The staff at Training Center Cape May do not edit the journals in any way, so as to ensure authenticity of the content and messages.