Catch 22

Here in AmeriCorps National Civilian Community Corps (NCCC) we get to do some pretty crazy and amazing things.  From helping out and mentoring kids at Boys and Girls Clubs to trail building throughout various State Parks, camping in and around the Grand Canyon and on top of mountains to learning how to do taxes, fight wildfires and live together in community. 

As I am an alternate for Sun Unit’s Fire Management Team, I get the privilege of going with the Fire Units Fire Management Team to participate in the training.  In the unfortunate event that someone on one of the Fire Management teams gets injured, I may be called to take their place.  I get the training so that if this were to happen, I know what to do. 

Although this is exciting and an adventure, I am caught in a sort of Catch 22.  For the next week and a half, I will be away from my team and placed with another, from a whole nother unit.  I will miss the road trip from Denver out to Tulsa, OK, social interactions and team building with my team, and the initial days and training for our project for the next two months. 

Even before we depart in our separate ways, I can feel the internal struggle of managing my time with my team and the requirements that being an alternate comes with.  Already, I know that I will miss being with my team throughout the these coming days. 

Don’t get me wrong, I am honored to be able to do this, but I believe that it will be a hard transition to come back to my team after having missed so much between training for taxes and the social aspect of team building. 

To throw another spin into the situation, my team, Sun 7, will be working and living alongside another team, Fire 3, for the next two months.  We still don’t fully know the housing situation, whether or not the teams will be mixed or separated.  We don’t know how the teams will interact with one another, nor do we know the work ethic of our partnering team members. 

Sometimes, all we can do is go with the flow.  Yes, we can worry all we want, but that won’t change anything. 

I knew that accepting the position of alternate would cause me to miss the first week and a half of our second round of projects.  I just didn’t realize how much I would miss my own team, the individual members, the Team Leader, the experience. 

In situations like this, you win and loose either way.  I could have backed out of the alternate position.  I would be with my team, but I would miss the opportunity to learn how to fight and manage wildfires.  Although I will miss being with my team, these are outweighed by the change to learn from this current training. 

Tomorrow morning, as my team departs for Tulsa, I will head off to train with the Fire Management Team for the next week and a half.  I am sure that God will teach me a lot about trusting in him, serving others and leadership.  I am honored to be part of this adventure, no matter what the cost. 

God Bless and PEACE

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