I try to put my guard up, because when I have feelings, I’ve always felt deeply. That is why I was so distraught with thoughts about heading back to New York City to work. It’s nice to feel comfortable and content. I, like many flight attendants, am a walking hypocrisy; when I’m grounded, all I can think about is going back to my non-routine fun filled adventures. On the flip side, when I’m flying, I crave routine. To wake up at a normal hour consistently and to have normal eating, exercise and social habits is something I go to bed dreaming about. My thoughts wander to “if I had a desk job I could hang out with Emily this weekend…”
I don’t have many days filled with comfort and routine. The days I do find routine only last for a couple at a time. As a flight attendant, you are in a constantly changing work environment that effects your personal life by way of ‘lack of presence.’
Hopefuls: Once you become cabin crew, you may experience similar feelings. I wish there was a way I could bottle up how I’m feeling and have felt this week just to give all of your hopefuls a peek into the harder days. I’ll let you in on a secret.. I’ve cried twice this week.
Full disclosure: I’m a crier, and I’ve come to terms with it.
The two instances when I cried this week: after spending the afternoon with my best friend in my hometown and before going to sleep last night– before an early commute to NYC after two days with my significant other. I had so much fun with these two this week. Why would this make me cry? I touched on it before, but there is something to be said about the feeling of contentment when your life is constantly on the road and living out of a bag. Some days, I do wish I had a normal job that allowed me to be grounded and most days I wouldn’t have my life any other way. But, I have my moments. Don’t misunderstand me, I’m fully aware of how blessed I am to be doing a job that most only dream of and I am extremely thankful to be doing something that makes me happy.
It doesn’t matter how thankful I am to be doing what I love, it still hurts like hell when I have to leave the ones I care about. It’s like ripping a bandaid off every time I get dropped off at the airport…again. And again. And again. My life is constantly filled with airports, airplanes, and saying “see you later.” Most of the time that “later” is yet to be determined, which makes it just that much harder.
I am sharing this with you because think it’s important to keep these feelings in mind when picking what airline is best for YOU. If you’ve watched any of my YouTube videos, you may have already heard this piece of advice. I always recommend for those thinking about making the leap to the airline world to first and foremost consider base options. I think it is important to choose an airline that has a base close to where you find your comfort zone as the first year of flying is not an easy transition. Having a base close to home or one that allows easy access to home, will become something you will come appreciate. With so much time spent away from your loved ones, having a home base will make your transition into the fly life immensely easier.
For example, if you are from Florida, I would not recommend you apply to work for Alaska Airlines. Alaska is one of the best carriers to work for in the nation, but their bases are all on the West Coast. Instead, I would first tell you to apply to JetBlue and American Airlines. JetBlue has a stronghold on the Florida routes and bases on the East Coast. American Airlines claims Miami as a junior base.
I was lucky enough to have my mother (in New Jersey) nearby my base of New York City. Despite New Jersey not being my home, it is extremely helpful to be able to lean on her from time to time. Having the support of loved ones close by could make or break your first year of flying.
This is just my advice. Take it or leave it. As mentioned above, I have many flight attendant career videos on YouTube for free. Check them out. Also check out the flight attendant life’s careers workbook eBook that pairs with the YouTube videos.
I wish you all of the best of luck with your pursuits and if you ever run into me in an airport, stop me and say hello. Totally approachable; in person and email.
meghan [at] theflightattendantlife [dot] com
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