With each Camouflaged Sisters book project we’ve experienced the healing power of putting pen to paper and better understand the incredible power our words have. In this series, we interview coauthors from the next Camouflaged Sisters book, Behind the Rank and learn how they’ve been able to regain personal strength by sharing their individual stories. Listen in as they share the struggles they’ve been able to overcome in their lives and military careers to become the courageous women they are today.
Join Award Winning Author Lila Holley as she interviews the Co-Authors from their award winning new book ‘Behind the Rank’. Here is a snippet from an interview with Kristina Eaton and Abeni Scott…
HOST: It’s called Behind the Rank. I am very excited because one of these ladies –- well, both of these ladies are Army officers, and one is –- I’m a retired chief warrant officer, and one is a retired chief warrant officer like me. So I always get a little, you know, excited when I have others on the show with me. And so tonight I’m so excited to bring before you Abeni, Scott and Kristina Eaton. Ladies, are you there?
GUEST: Yes, I’m here.
GUEST: I’m here.
HOST: Very good, very good. I’m so excited. I’m so excited. So, are y’all excited to be here?
HOST: Very good. So, what I like to do is give my guests an opportunity to introduce themselves and give a little bit about their military background. So, Kristina, if you want to start us off.
GUEST: Okay. Hello everyone. My name is Kristina Eaton. I’m currently serving in the Army. I recently got promoted to major, and I work —
GUEST: Thank you. I’m a logistics officer. I came in shortly after 9/11, and the years just keep on rolling. I’m currently in Indianapolis, and this book project is my fourth book project. So to me with the upcoming release is a huge deal for me. All I ever wanted to do was write, and it’s just a blessing to see everything coming to manifestation.
HOST: Yes, that is awesome. Well, thank you so much for your service first off. And congratulations on your promotion, and thanks for being a part of this book project. We are very excited to have you as a part of the project. And Abeni, are you there?
GUEST: Yes, I’m here.
HOST: All right. Tell the people about your military background.
GUEST: Yes, ma’am. I am CW2 Scott retired. I hail from Miami, Florida. I just retired with 20 years from the US Army on March 1st. I –- While I was in the military I served as a supply systems technician. Currently, I am an intern at a local outreach center here in Killeen, Texas and also owner of a women’s boutique. Right now I have no children, but I have a partner who I love. And we are mommies to our beautiful dog, Bud.
HOST: A toxic leadership environment. And this is a real conversation that we have to have in this day and age, because so many different opportunities are being opened up for women serving, and they are going to walk into these environments. And they are going to need to know how to get through them. And so your story is very, very important. And I’m so glad you chose to share that part of your story, because it’s a conversation I think needs to take place. It really does. It’s a conversation that needs to take place. A lot of times because, you know, they’re so few and far between of us military women that we’re not always going to be in an environment where we have a woman mentor. And so a lot of times, you know, male mentors they serve –- they can mentor us just as well as a woman could. But they need to know some of the challenges that we face. And this is a challenge that we face, you know, toxic leadership environment. They just need to know some of the things that we deal with as women serving in the military. And it’s tough when you –- I don’t think it’s any tougher –- and you guys chime in on this. I don’t think it’s any tougher either on an officer’s side or the enlisted side. Because I have high-ranking enlisted friends, sergeant majors, as well as high-ranking officer friends. And toxic leadership –- it don’t matter what side of the rank structure you’re on, it’s tough to fight through that type of environment. Would you agree?
GUEST: Yes, Lila. I wanted to go ahead and chime in on that ’cause I have a thought for the question you just asked us. And that kind of leads into what you just went over.
HOST: Go ahead.
GUEST: Writing my chapter and thereafter, even my current assignment, I realized that — and I’m going to go back to my attitude because there’s days that I woke up like I don’t want to go to work. I don’t want to go to my unit. And it really creates a bitterness within you. But once I changed my mindset and said no, I’m going to have a good day. I’m going to be positive, and I switched that mindset to just be positive no matter what the outcome. My total environment around me changed. So I didn’t see everything as oh, this is against me or this is setting me up for failure or this person is against me. And I think sometimes as minority women whether officer or enlisted, we don’t go out playing the victim but we have a tendency to be perceived as that. So –- ’cause we know we’re serving in a male-dominating environment. We can’t have that mindset. So our mindset has to be just as sharp and stronger than our male counterparts because of that reason. Because we’re already seen as the weaker gender because we’re women. So for me I have to say, okay, look you’re a minority by your gender and you’re a minority by your ethnicity.
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