What It Feels Like To Have Your Dream Validated

By Pilot Lindy // as told to Branden Gallimore

Branden Gallimore

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As a little girl, everything above me—the trees, the birds and the planes—always appeared not as something in my reach, but rather something up in the sky. Being in a plane as a passenger is one thing that I have always loved. To look down from above towards the earth and watch the beauty of nature has always mesmerized me. Being so free and open in the world like a bird is a feeling I have always wanted, so being able to achieve my lifelong dream of becoming a pilot was an indescribable feeling. I am proud enough to say that little girl always looking up into the sky amazed is now in the sky and controlling a 50,000kg airplane.

Everyone has dreams, and plenty of them. At any given time someone can dream about anything they please, but, to me, a passion is something that not everyone has. People can someday hope to be a professional athlete or a doctor, but not everyone can have a burning passion for what they want to be some day. I, on the other hand, am one of those few people that have a burning passion and can say that they are really living up to it.

Having my passion for flying validated is one thing that I will forever cherish, but the path to where I am today was not the easiest. At a young age, I thought becoming a pilot was nearly impossible, especially for a female. At around 15, I started spending a lot of my time researching. I spent hours looking at every aspect of what it takes to be a pilot and what it’s like. Eventually, I was lucky enough to get in contact with a few pilots and realized it was not so impossible after all. They warned me becoming a pilot took hard work, hours of studying and a lot of dedication, but it was not out of reach for me.

The sky is very large, but it was not too large for me. In order to validate my passion, for months I studied from 10 a.m. until 10 p.m., oftentimes forgetting about social life and sleep. I put in all of this time because I knew I needed to pass all 14 exams that came along with my flight school; I needed to get at least a 75 percent on each exam in order to pass. Due to all of the hard work and dedication I put into knowing the material necessary to become a pilot, I passed all exams with a 95 percent average, making my passion’s first flight one step closer to me. Aviation is one of those fields of work that is never ending, meaning all of the information I obtained in flight school I need to know throughout my whole career. So staying current with knowledge on our flying skills is what we do in the everyday job.

Before getting into the everyday job, I had to face the everyday battle. This battle consisted of what was necessary to get through my flight school. During my time with my flight school, it was by no means easy, but having students around me with the same passion of being high in the sky made everything a lot less difficult. Once flight school in Spain was over, I had to wait my time; I had to wait to take hold of my opportunity. Patience is a virtue and having to wait was not easy. The day I graduated I was ready to get my flying career started, but a year after I graduated I finally got my wings.

My experience in flight school led me on my path to my current employer. After a process, I received some of the best news in my entire life; I was hired as a pilot! This feeling was really indescribable. After all of the long hours of studying, the sleepless nights worrying if I could actually fly, and in hopes of validating my passion, I finally did what I always dreamed of as a little girl, and the feeling was even better than I ever imagined. Even though my dream was a reality now, the work that I put in did not slow down at all.

Being a pilot is a very time consuming job, but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. I usually work around five days a week, and around four flights per day. These flights can vary from early in the morning until around 2 or 3 p.m., or starting around 2 p.m. and finishing up around midnight.  Although this is a rigorous work schedule, I am rewarded with three to four days off to myself to rest. Being in the sky brings me great joy and pleasure, and the first time I was able to fly as a pilot was one I will never forget.

When I first started flying, I was able to touch the controls after takeoff, and got to practice maintaining altitude, speed and heading. It was such a breathtaking experience being in the sky for the first time ever. After this, I went to working on maneuvers, turns, climbs and descents. But, when I got in the sky at the very start of validating my passion, it was like being in the sky for the first time ever again. With anything in life, there was some sort of adversity that comes along with it.

Being a female, according to others, I’m not supposed to be a pilot. My colleagues do not look at me any differently being a female pilot, despite their belief in me, I have had situations with passengers thinking otherwise. Occasionally, a passenger will look a little deeper into the cockpit to make sure there is a male in there with me, but this really does not phase me at all. If I were to give advice to any female, not only in aviation, but in any male dominated profession, it would be to not believe that you are any less than the males, because you are not. Do what you are asked to do and prove that you are just as good or better than the others. With aviation being a male dominated profession, I guess you could say that I’m flying against the wind.

Throughout my flying career so far, I have been documenting my trips, giving tips to future pilots and just showing my everyday life through YouTube videos and on my Instagram account. There was recently a CNN article written about me that was really amazing. Being able to see myself and my work on a world-wide known news website was truly awesome. Prior to this article, I had 87,000 followers on Instagram from my YouTube videos. But after CNN, my followers caught like wildfire. Now, I am over 100,000 followers and hope to obtain more to hopefully inform those who are interested in, or don’t know much about aviation.

Being so popular on social media was really not what my main goal was. I did not start my Instagram account to become “famous” or inspire others, it just kind of turned out that way. Although it’s hard to see myself as an inspiration, I find it truly fascinating that I am able to give others advice, show them what pilot-life is like and also to give them hope that becoming a pilot is really possible for males or females. I find it an honor to be this popular and to help others out like I aspire to do.

I love being able to help out others, but I am still working to help myself out as well. In the future, I really want to discover more of the world. Even though I fly to places almost everyday, one of my goals is to be able to fly long haul, stay a few days at a destination and see how other countries and nations live. Yes, I am living my passion of flying as a pilot, but I still have more dreams I hope to achieve. Someday, I would like to become a captain and be able to take lead in the flights. The captain has most of the power, and being able to have all of that power in my hands would truly make validating my passion a success.