You would think that being a United States Marine and deploying to Afghanistan would prepare you for almost anything. We go through the toughest training and can live in the most austere environments.What I didn’t expect is that my son would follow in my footsteps. He would grow up and become a US Marine, like his father, and now he’s patrolling in the same country that I was deployed to years ago.

I’ve never been on the other side of deployment. Meaning, I’ve never had to experience what my family had to endure when I was away. When I was…


At some point or another, we have anxiety and stress. Perhaps as a student it is a musical performance or a speech that is in front of others. It is a culmination of the work performed (either good or bad) that is going to be evaluated by your peers and your superiors. This goes on into our professional careers as well as we typically have performance reviews to communicate our strengths and the things that we need to work on.

There was an interesting study entitled “Understanding the Dark and Bright Sides of Anxiety: A Theory of Workplace Anxiety” by…


A continuation of PTSD Changed My Life Part 4

Camp Bastion 2012

Many folks talk about culture of an organization and the feeling of belonging. Despite the setbacks I had in my training, I felt that I needed to embody what I believe the culture of the organization was. We were taught to lead by example, to be technically and tactically proficient, and to take care of one another. As a Lieutenant, we were told to trust our senior enlisted Marines as they have the experience to “show us the way”. This is what ( in my own naive way) believed to be…


The 20-year mark after high school graduation is a milestone for many in the United States and after two decades you finally get to see the people you’ve friended on social media to see what they are actually doing in real life. Despite the awkwardness, for me, it was an event that brought closure to a tumultuous time.

Honestly, I didn’t want to go. I remembered all the cliques and can recall how dorky being a band guy was. (I was a drum major). I remember how people dismissed me when they found out I was going to be a…


These are the famous words spoken by one of our favorite heroes from the Star Wars saga, Yoda. It’s a powerful lesson in committing to doing something that you may or may not be familiar with. I have always wondered how this was applicable in my life, personally and professionally. However, the decision to “do” or not “to do” is not binary and I specifically relate this with how I understand and evaluate risk to make an informed decision.

As a professional, I deal with risk on a daily basis so that my business and my team can stay safe…


Reflections from a new entrepreneur

Photo by Lukas

After years of fiddling around with the idea that I wanted to run my own business, I finally did it. Why? I was exhausted of not being in control of my life and especially my career. Throughout my working life, I’ve had a regularly paying job with benefits.

I spent a good amount of time in the military, so I had a job for as long as I could renew my contract. However, I was tired of that life in that you could only move as fast as the promotion system would let you and…


Thoughts on moving forward from a veteran

Photo by Thanh Long

Like many of you, I’ve had my fair share of terrible days. I’ve spent many days and sleepless obsessing over “what if I’ve done this” or “I should’ve done X or Y” that given me a healthy dose of depression and later turned to PTSD. I suppose it is because I had a need for acknowledgement, support, encouragement, and as well as a sense of control. While these are important, I’ve learned a few things that have helped me get through the really dark days. Hopefully some of these lessons you can use.

Own it and move forward

Sometimes the weight of the world is…


Continuation from PTSD Changed My Life…Part 3

The Basic School (TBS) was a proving ground for 2nd Lieutenants in the Marine Corps. It’s where young men and women are put together in platoons and put through another gauntlet of tests of academics and physical fitness. If there was another way to put it, I would call it TBS, The Big Sexy. Why? …


Have you ever tried to define normal? I’ve often wondered what it is and how do you measure it. We learn in our studies that the society that we live in some ways dictate what our normal is. Should we not be free to choose what our baseline is? Or should we adjust our baseline to what is perceived to be a normalized baseline to the society/culture that we live in?

This is a continuation of my story from “PTSD Changed My Life…Part 2”

The military is a culture and the Marine Corps is it’s own subculture. We are elite…


I thought that I was an idiot, that I was incompetent, and that I was good for nothing. At least that is how I feel I was treated as a junior Marine Corps officer. You see, my story is a mixed bag of things that contributed to my mental state. Some of these were my decisions and other things were externally influenced. Either way, I have it. Post Traumatic Stress Disorder.

This is a continuation from PTSD Changed My Life…Part 1

I had stayed up all night getting ready with Veronica. It’s January 6th, 2001 and I was going to…

Wilson Bautista Jr.

Cybersecurity Professional, Author, Veteran, Podcast Host, and Mental Health Advocate. Connect with me on LinkedIn: https://www.linkedin.com/in/bautistawilson/

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