I became a soldier shortly after high school. I’ve served many years in the Military and wouldn’t change that experience for anything. But everything has a beginning and an end. So at the end of my military career I turned my focus on becoming a landscape artist. What an opportunity!
I’ve dedicated a room as my studio and set up everything in a logical manner. My acrylic paints are placed in a drawer, my brushes are within easy reach and my easel is set up so my canvas captures the natural light from my window. I turn on some music and begin creating a peaceful, relaxing landscape painting. Life is amazing!
However, sometimes when I’m alone with my own thoughts, my mind wonders to my old life; Like the simple things of being a professional soldier – putting on my uniform, lacing up my combat boots, ensuring that my people were trained, ready and taken care of. I felt needed and essential.
At times, my career as a soldier was extremely stressful and to be honest, I have been in plenty of demanding situations, but overall, I loved being a soldier. I was severing my country and what a great honour that was.
It has been a year and a half since I completed my military career and even though I am extremely happy doing what I have always dreamt of doing (being landscape artist), I still find myself experiencing a bumpy transition from bullets to brushes. Perhaps this is because as a soldier I felt that I played a role in a respectable organization, one of which maybe my leadership and experience aided in the grooming of the next generation of military members.
I don’t know. I don’t have all the answers. But I have come to realize that we all have our own unique situations and we all need to choose how we deal with them. I’ve decided that I have the power to choose how I react to the situation that I am in. I have accepted that my metal mindset from soldier to artist will take some time. And I will probably continue to fight with my inner demons on this situation for a while.
Transitioning from one situation to another can be difficult. It can be stressful, or overwhelming. I’ve concluded that we need to be pleased with what we have accomplished, learn from our mistakes, be proud of our achievements, look forward to new challenges, and accept who we were and who we are now. We need to move forward and soldier on.
My point is; if you find yourself in a difficult situation, take the time to think it through. Decide on what is the best way to react to the issue. And remember, if you don’t have all the answers… that’s OK too.