It’s a question so common and familiar. It’s asked almost every time a flight attendant meets someone and ‘that someone’ finds out that the flight attendant is a flight attendant. If it’s obvious the flight attendant is that (because they are in uniform), travelers are intensely curious and intrigued by what seems to be a “glamorous job.”
The question comes in different forms; often after inquiries regarding terrible passengers, crazy inflight moments, pilots, and ‘The Mile High Club.” The question might be worded differently, but the root motive is always the same. These people want to know, “How did you become a flight attendant?”
We all have that story. It’s a story of becoming— like a soul becoming. Because, some of us have always wanted to do this. We have dreamed about it since the days of little girl and little boyhood. Some of us have never wanted to do this. Some of us did this initially as a fluke— like a dare or accident. It was a career detour that we deemed appropriate for a couple of years, just to ‘get it out of our system.’ We were surprised when it didn’t work like that and continued for years and years and more years; a testament to the fact that once you start the flight attendant lifestyle, it is an imprint in your nature— part of who you are.
That’s the thing about fly life. If you want it out of your system, you should probably never try it. For when you leap, you are changed forever.
I know that being a flight attendant isn’t for everyone, but for everyone who has tried it, he or she will have a story. Ask Griffin, Meghan, Celessa, Rachael, Marco, Talia, Jasmine, myself— anyone who has ever contributed to this blog— or any cabin crew anywhere! They will have a backstory to finding their fly life that is more of a journey than a job. It’s a coming of age. A sort of epiphany.
My ‘becoming a flight attendant story’ is accident coupled with destiny. I was a marketing graduate; sure that my life path would be married at 24. I would work at an advertising firm. Live in one place. Own a dog. Have a baby. I still hope to find ‘my person,’ adopt a puppy, and enjoy Momhood, but how blessed am I to have flying first? I was gifted time to explore and wonder; break and repair; build and grow. I was free to fly.
Flight Attendant Life has always been a mix of lonely and lovely. In the loneliness, I discovered how strong I could be and how much I could take. In the lovely, I realized how big and broad and possible the world was. Everyone has a story, and when you ask a flight attendant how it was that ‘this way’ became ‘her way,’ pay attention to the small cues that tell you how she’s changed, what she’s had, where she’s been, and where she will go.
What’s your becoming a flight attendant story? It probably has changed your life, and it will most likely change someone else’s life too. If you think about it, this entire blog— over 5 years of writing and almost 8 years of flying— finds its foundation and fuel in that specific question. I know my life is forever changed because of becoming a flight attendant and writing about it. I pray and hope that yours is positively changed too, whether you are a flight attendant, become a flight attendant, or simply read about the adventures.
Let’s hear your stories on IG about how you became a flight attendant. Post a photo that depicts, shares, exhibits your heart and soul flight attendant journey, with a little of your story. Tag @thefalife, @flywithmehgan, and @thejourneyofayounggun and hashtag #myflystory, so we can see it! We want to hear about you!!
Also, if you want to tell your story on the blog, email them to me at kara [at] theflightattendantlife [dot] com. Place the copy in the body of the email, along with a 2 Sentence bio, and 3 photos attached (with descriptions). They could be published here!