You can accomplish anything when you believe in yourself
In recent years, more women engage in professions which were classically designed for men. Despite the hardships and difficulties that female seafarers encounter, I have found trusting and believing oneself are the key factors to overcome such circumstances.
Life of a seafarer is not a bed of roses and I can attest to that. It is a cycle of challenges demanding efforts not just physically and mentally but also the integrity of one’s spiritual and emotional toughness.
One of the prevalent tasks that I faced when starting as a seafarer was handling the heavy mooring ropes. We, who work on board, all know mooring is an extremely critical operation and a very strenuous activity. These ropes are 200 metres long, weigh two tonnes and have a diameter that is thrice my forearm. The ropes need to be winched out in less than 10 minutes just to secure our 50,000 tonne vessel at the quay.
Transferring the mooring ropes from the storage drum to the tension drum demands skills, practice and a lot of patience. When I first observed my fellow crew members it looked so easy, however, when I took the winch it did not move a bit. It was so heavy. I felt anxious and started sweating profusely blended by the warm and noisy environment. After a few trials I managed to start winching the rope but halfway I felt my legs shaky and couldn’t raise my arms. Oh it’s really heavy! My fellow crew member kindly extended his assistance to help me. After some practice, I learned to master the proper technique of handling the mooring ropes efficiently. Today, I am supervising and implementing strict compliance of safety measures on the whole operation as well as the control of winches.
It doesn’t matter what the nature of the work as long as you have the passion and belief in yourself, you can accomplish anything.
Text and photo by Monalisa onboard one of our Höegh vessels.
If you are a seafarer of Höegh Autoliners and would you like to share your story, please contact Corporate Communications on firstname.lastname@example.org