My stomach is in knots as I walk into the building to report for duty. I have no idea what I've gotten myself into, and I have mixed emotions, kinda like the 1st time your about to make love.
I come to the front desk where a very stern looking man is seated. He looks up. And I say "Petty Officer Clarence Willard reporting for duty sir."
He looks down at his sheet never saying a word, finds my name, holds the paper to me and says "sign here. Your with UDT class 15. Go to the building across the hall, and find a bunk. We'll get you fitted for your uniform later. Now get the fuck out of my face."
I walk away speechless. Not that everyone I've worked with didnt talk that way, hell, we all did. It was just a very strange thing, and seemed unnecessary, but I would soon find out why.
There are 2 classes a year, and men may DOR (Drop on Request) at any point during training. A class may start with 100+ recruits and only have 20 from the original class by graduation.
So he didnt care to get to know anyone. Because, chances were, I wouldn't be here long anyways. From the moment you sign that paper, the mind game begins. And for the next 29 weeks, I would be wet, cold, sandy, tired, and miserable.
Only thing they made sure you had enough of, was food and water. There was 85 men in class 15, and in 3 days, Indoc would begin.
It's a 5 week process, teaching us what to expect, and what they expect from us. How to line up, stretch, run the O course, and how to carry the inflatable boats on our heads. Things like that, basically preparing you for a kick to the nuts, by kicking you in the nuts.
There was 10 men that DORd during Indoc phase. Something about the thought, that this was PREP for what was coming, made these men break. We wake up, and are on the grinder at 5 am, and the day may end at 8 pm, or it may end at 11 pm. Whatever they decided we needed that day, and at no point are anyone, "comfortable"
They were lucky, because on Monday, 5 weeks later, first day of First phase, for the next 15 hours, I endured more pain than I had ever felt in my whole life. After the day was over, I realized just how easy they really were taking it on us in Indoc. It's not any one thing that sucks, it's all of it together, what SUCKS is diving into the ocean, roll in the sand till 100% of your body is covered
and then do the O course. Skin just seems to fall off your hands when you touch metal. Almost immediately the thought of quitting enters your mind. The one thing that kept me going was the thought of my father and what he had done to my mother and to me.
I wanted to destroy the boy he had known and if I ever saw that son of a bitch again, hed see a monster, a monster they created. A man, a man I created. There are 3 phases at BUD/S, each phase is a 7 week process.
On the 3rd week of 1st phase is an evolution we call "Hell Week" where we must perform everything we've learned up to that point from Sunday night, to friday afternoon, with as little as 3 hours sleep throughout the week
My Hell Week is tomorrow.. They've put up tents for the whole class to sleep in, because at any point they will bust in and wake everyone up with guns shooting outside, controlled bombs exploding, and smoke everywhere with loud siren's going, all while 10 instructors are yelling orders at you, and expecting you to follow those orders.. It's very disorienting
Just in the past 3 weeks, we've lost another 13 recruits. The instructors have told us, that by the time hell week is done, we will have lost half the class... God, I pray I'm not one of them. Your mind can play crazy tricks on you after being awake for 3 days straight constantly getting your ass beat. But I'm beginning to realize.. I may actually enjoy the pain..
I'm trying to focus all this hate, and anger I've built up and put it into this. Laying there in the tent, I try and focus on my actual mother, and all she went through to find me. Thinking of showing up at her door, and being someone she can be proud of. I decided right then they'd have to kill me to get me to quit.. also right then, an instructor comes in screaming like it's a war.. here we go!
To be continued