By Natalie Miles, EAA 1478672.
“She’s a pilot,” said my instructor after I handled a high oil temperature issue in flight during a solo cross country.
You learn so much about yourself when you are flying solo. Anything can happen, and it is your responsibility to be prepared for all possible outcomes. That one sentence my instructor told me has stuck with me and motivated me throughout my training and boosted my confidence as a pilot. “She’s a pilot.” Yes, I am a pilot, and now I am officially a commercial pilot.
I have worked endless hours studying, flying, and absorbing all the information possible to become not only the best pilot I can be, but to become the best person I can be. As it goes with all training, commercial had its ups and downs. The cockiness of getting in the airplane and thinking you are unstoppable with an instrument rating and private pilot certificate soon becomes humbled as you start to fly new maneuvers and are held to much higher standards. My first flight as commercial was a local flight to the practice area to learn the new maneuvers. I was cocky, I can’t lie. I knew I could fly the airplane and wanted to impress my new instructor. As I started to fly the new maneuvers, I became frustrated. I did not understand why I couldn’t perform maneuvers and landings to the highest of standards I had set for myself. I had yet to realize that this was still training. It’s a process, and you will always be learning and improving. You will never be perfect the first time you perform something, and that is okay. What is important is that you understand why and what you can do next to become better the next time. And with that thought in mind, each flight progressively improved.
Ten solo night landings to a full stop. This requirement allowed me to fly solo for the first time since November. I was nervous. Although I am capable, safe, and legal to fly the Cirrus by myself, not having my instructor there beside me made me feel…