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Today I’m linking up again with Momfessionals for “Show and Tell Tuesday!” The topic is What I Wanted To Be When “I Grow Up.” I love a chance to share some old school pics and share a bit about myself before I was a mom. My blog purpose is for my children to someday have these posts to look back on and to see their lives unfold through my perspective. I love being able to incorporate some of EMILY in the mix to allow them to know me beyond just what they know as their mama 🙂
I think all kids go through stages of wanting to be different things as adults. Here’s some of the things I always wanted “to be”:
1. I was an animal lover from a young age. I remember wanting to be a vet until I learned that vets had to give shots and I learned that they had to put animals to sleep. No thanks! I then decided that instead of being a vet that I’d have a HUGE basement in my house someday and in that basement I’d keep shelter animals. I’m pretty sure that dream died when I moved to South Ga where no one has basements and when I married a man whose whole family doesn’t own any pets and believes all pets belong outside!
With my childhood dog: Buffy
(pre-vampire slaying days)
2. I was also always a book worm from a young age. I loved to read. I still love to read! I did a LOT of creative writing just for fun while growing up. Like we had a creative writing cd rom game for our Apple computer. I loved making up stories! I was published in a couple kids magazines and also won a Mosaic writing contest for our area a couple times. I never stopped enjoying writing and still feel I can best express myself through written words. I joke with Zach that I’m a better “virtual person” than a “in real life person.” I can type (and text!) faster than I can speak and I just can say the right thing in the right way when I write it down…while speaking out loud tends to get me in more trouble 😉 I need a real-life delete button! My love of writing created a desire to be an author. This dream never really died. In college I took several English courses, including one on editing and one on creative writing. I loved them. I thought about even possibly being an editor as I enjoyed the editing process. I feel like blogging has helped me achieve the writing goal in my life. It’s probably as close as I’ll ever become to being a legit author 😉
3. My other great love growing up was movie watching. I loved to watch deeper thinking type stuff and discussing and dissecting it with my dad. I had a “movie test” for guys I dated where I’d show them a movie and see what they thought about it. One guy took me on a date to see Charlie’s Angels. Instant movie test fail haha! My movie watching did not become a desire to act. I took one drama class in high school and switched classes within the first week. When I would pretend to be accepting an Academy Award (because who hasn’t practiced that speech in their bathroom mirror, right?) I was always winning for “Best Director.” My little neighborhood friends and I would make movies where I’d always direct and they’d all act out the parts. This worked to my advantage as there aren’t any embarrassing home movies of me floating around 🙂 I still really, really enjoy watching movies. I try to see all Oscar nominated films each year (remember the year recently that I finally achieved the goal?). I’ve learned that watching movies by myself is something I really enjoy and it makes me feel connected to Emily in a way that so many other hobbies just don’t do. So I’m trying to make it a personal goal to watch “Emily” type movies more regularly!
So those were three things I always thought about being when I grew up: a vet, an author, and a movie director. However, my greatest dream of all dreams for my adult life was to be a stay at home mom. I knew it was what my heart wanted more than anything else in the world!
In high school I was very independent and on my own in a lot of ways. I remember feeling a lot of loneliness and I really felt strong connections with some of my teachers. I especially loved Mrs. McLocklin. She taught several elective classes including a foods class and a family course. She talked about things that really spoke to my heart. She talked about finding a spouse, managing a home, and taught me how to cook for my future family. I still have all the recipes she did with us and cook many of them now! I’m so thankful for her influence in my life. She helped me learn the kind of qualities I’d want in a future husband and I headed off to college with the goal of achieving my MRS degree 😉
While at Florida State my freshman year I was undecided in my major. I truly just looked at college as a way to meet a husband who would have the same goals and desires that I had for my future. I knew I wanted to be a stay at home mom and I knew it wouldn’t be easy to find a guy who was 1) even looking for “wife material” at that age and 2) who had the passion and drive to provide for a family and would want a wife who would stay home. I had a great time that year and still made really good grades and took my school work seriously.
In January of my freshman year I just happened to make a quick trip up to a small South Ga town and had no clue that my life was about to be forever changed! I met Zach and thought he was cute but didn’t really think there was a big connection there until we started talking. Within the first 30 min or so of our conversation we both realized we had the SAME big picture goals in life. He was passionate about only investing in girls he could see a future with. He was on the hunt (yes, at only 19!) for his wife and he felt strongly about having a like-minded woman to become his mate. His dad had worked three jobs when he was a young child, his family lived in a small trailer and lived very tightly with their money in order for his mom to be home with them. He knew he wanted his future wife to be home with his children too and that he would do whatever he had to in order to provide that ability to his family.
That summer I took a leap of faith and transferred to VSU and three years later, we were married!
I remember the weekend of our wedding a family member talked to me about how crazy we were to get married while still in school. Here I was so passionate about wanting to be a stay-at-home-mom and yet I was marrying a guy who was a full time student. How did I know that I’d be able to stay home when we were ready to have kids? I mean we didn’t even have a CLUE what kind of profession Zach would have post-graduation. I know many people may think that someone who wants to stay home full-time would be looking for a guy with money. I mean it makes sense! Marry someone who you already know can afford for you to not work, right? But I wasn’t ever concerned at all about Zach’s ability to provide for us and our future children. I knew he’d do whatever he had to do and I knew we’d figure it out together. We both shared that passion and trusted each other fully!
When we graduated from college we were happily married and ready to face the world together!
This past month we celebrated 8 years of marriage. While it is never easy, I’m so thankful that I married someone with those big picture goals in common. We both keep our focus on God and we both strive to be the best spouses and parents we can be. Through meeting Zach I not only found my forever mate but I found the path to my “dream job!”
I am so thankful to spend every day at home with my sweet babies. I never take it for granted and am so thankful for this opportunity. I may not be an author, or a veterinarian, or some Oscar-winning movie director. But I’m a mother to Kye, Britt and Tess and that is my greatest accomplishment and greatest joy! I’m in the exact job I always pictured myself having when “I grow up.”