Day 309…I don’t believe you

In the late 90’s I was a Scout Platoon Leader in an Infantry Battalion in Hawaii. One morning a pack of new soldiers reported to the battalion for the first time. My Scout platoon was short two men, so my platoon sergeant and I were given the ‘first pick’ of the group.

One of the soldiers we ‘picked’ had raised his hand and volunteered, even after hearing that being in the Scouts would not be fun – it would suck.

‘I believe in you’ was the only melody line I ever gave this one soldier. A few weeks later, after a grueling four-day exercise which included very little sleep and a lot of moving through the jungle with 75-pound rucksacks – he fell asleep when he was supposed to be on guard. I managed to sneak into the perimeter, which meant that I had, in essence, killed him and the four other soldiers in his reconnaissance element.

After finding him asleep, I went to his ass in a major way. I knew he wanted to become a Special Forces soldier one day. I also knew he needed to hear me say, “You’ll never become a Green Beret falling asleep on guard duty. I am so disappointed in you.” I can remember the pain those words caused this young and pliable warrior. This was not a gut-shot. It was a soul-shot.

In time, this soldier became one of my closest friends in Hawaii. When I left, I gave him my very first Special Forces tab and told him to ‘earn his’.

Man – oh – man – did he! FB not only became a Green Beret….He became a great leader, husband, father, and friend.

And yes, a great builder. You see, FB is someone that I have leaned into for the past 21 years. FB grew into a mountain. He became faster, stronger, more compassionate, more fierce and smarter than I ever was. He knows who he is and why he is here. He sees life and his role in it as clearly as anyone I know.

PA for today? Give the gift of belief to someone you love. Someone who you see each and every day. Maybe even someone in your home…




1 thought on “Day 309…I don’t believe you

  1. Day 309Some people can move up the scale by a whisper in their ear. Others may need a kick in the ass.  A good leader can tell which is necesarry. Sent from my T-Mobile 4G LTE Device

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