Growing up, I was focused on either school or reading. I never really thought about being a mom. That is, until I became a member of The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. Being involved in such a family-centered church changed some of my views and goals in life.
Originally, I planned to go to college, stay on the dean's list, graduate near the top of my class, then jump into building my career. Marriage and family were something that would come along eventually . . . mostly likely after I was well establishing in my chosen profession.
This is how my life played out instead. I married my sweetheart after one year of college, then became pregnant during the next college semester. I'm still four classes shy of graduating. Just when I felt ready to go back and tackle those last four classes, our son was diagnosed with autism. So I set aside college and put all my energy into helping him.
My son is 12 years old now and has two sisters and a brother. We have a quirky, goofy family. Our home is filled with laughter and love . . . and the typical sibling squabbles. We run 5K's together, make up silly songs, tell totally corny jokes, help each other clean our house every Saturday, and are always ready with hugs anytime one of us is in need. We not only love each other, but we're best friends. And that's more valuable than any college degree out there.
Motherhood brought an unexpected, but completely fulfilling dimension into my life. Each day I know I'm in for a mixture of laughter and problems. I also know at the end of the day, four munchkins will snuggle up with me while I read a chapter from our latest Junie B. Jones book.
Being a mom is not at all what I thought it would be. It's hard, challenging, sometimes disgusting (especially during flu season). But if it were easy, then it wouldn't been nearly as fulfilling. I love being a mom. It's the best job ever!