Sunday, January 22, 2012

Owning the Creed

I am an American Airman.
I am a warrior.  I have answered my nation's call.
...
I am faithful to a proud heritage,
a tradition of honor,
and a legacy of valor.

These words from the Airman's Creed resonate with me, today in particular.  Today, in the midst of my usual gym/commissary run on base, I stopped by military clothing sales to pick up the necessary components for semi-formal dress.  I've been invited by my First Sergeant (whom we call "First Shirts" or "Shirts" in the AF) to attend the wing's annual awards banquet in March, as his guest.  It's not uncommon for them to spring for a junior enlisted Airman's ticket(s), since these events aren't normally patronized by those of us on the bottom.  I was one of the first to volunteer, so off I go!  It's being held at a nicer hotel in the area, they feed us, and there's some sort of musical entertainment.  [I'm holding out for some dancing, but I'm not sure if it's in the cards.]  But, I digress...

I've been coming through AFI 36-2903, trying to make sure I had a good understanding of what items I needed.  I found a service cap for my big melon, made sure to grab the band, managed to locate the correct insignia, chose a regulation-appropriate handbag, and trotted off to the fitting room to determine which white shirt would be best.  A quick check with the cashier as to whether or not I had everything, payment rendered, and I was on my way.  My short-term goal for my fitness and my eating is to do justice to my blues in March.  I haven't had the opportunity to wear service dress as a permanent party Airman, and I've never worn semi-formal.  I'm eager to get them dry cleaned, pressed, and looking perfect for the banquet.  While I'm not an honoree at the banquet, it's a great networking opportunity for me, a big reason why I'm going.  Hopefully one day I'll be on stage accepting a "_____________ of the Year" award!

Source: library.uncg.edu via Erin on Pinterest
This is my first time purchasing a service cap, which is not an item they issue to you.  While it could be considered "funny" looking by modern standards (I feel like I should be shoveling something with it), it's iconic to female military service members.  Its timeless style is the same, whether you're looking at pictures of 1952 (below) or 2012.  The only difference is in the replacement of the white top with the solid navy.  I love that the uniforms haven't changed drastically.  The uniform above dates to 1955.  The fact that it's already stitched with my SrA insignia just makes me want to snatch it up and wear it proudly.
  


Source: library.uncg.edu via Erin on Pinterest

The continuity in design styles connects modern Airmen to their revolutionary predecessors.  One glance in the mirror and we're reminded of how far we've come as female service members, yet how much the past is still a living, breathing leg of our current journey.


Those phrases in the creed - my creed - "a proud heritage," "a tradition of honor," "a legacy" - they couldn't ring truer.  I serve my country because of those who've come before me, who've shown me a legacy worthy of upholding, a legacy worthy of pride.  It is my hope and mission that I may do so with the same tradition of honor.

2 comments:

Taryn said...

;) "Service cap for my melon" ....

I have no doubt that one day, you will be on that stage accepting an award. Your service to self and country is ringing through in ALL of these posts!!

Erin said...

That's a DH-inspired comment, since he always teases me for having a big head. :) Thanks girl, I love it!