Thirteen years ago I stepped beyond the comfort zone of my soccer mom duties and monosyllabic conversations with my baby and renewed my quest for intellectual development in preparation for the possibility of future employment. Paralyzing fear and a lack of confidence in my abilities held back my progression until the day I realized that what I really needed was an eternal perspective. I discovered that successful intellectual development and a lifelong commitment to learning and service must be wrapped together with a quest for spiritual knowledge.
My religion classes reminded me where all truth comes from and how to discern between the teachings of God and the philosophies of men. This is an invaluable gift because absolute truth – God’s truth – never changes. Sometimes I feel like the philosophies of men change by the hour. When I can make informed decisions about worldly matters, based on gospel principles, I know that no matter what happens, everything is going to be okay. I will always land on my feet with the Lord by my side.
Along with increasing my knowledge, studying courses through Brigham Young University increased my communication skills and my writing abilities. My vocabulary expanded from nursery rhymes, soccer terminology and daily gossip, to philosophical discussions about current parenting challenges, the physiology of human development and the political woes of the education system.
The knowledge I gained from my BYU experience, together with life experiences, has given me a great deal of subject matter for my blogs. I could write page upon page detailing examples of the knowledge I gained on topics such as money management, brain development, personalities (and their disorders) and how to bake unbelievably delicious brownies (probably my family’s favorite lesson).
My patriarchal blessing admonishes me to learn everything I can because nothing I learn will go to waste. I will be given the opportunity to use all the knowledge I take the time to gain (especially when it comes to making those brownies :o).This principle also applies to my knowledge of the gospel of Jesus Christ. My BYU experience has given me greater ability to serve the Lord and help build His kingdom here on earth. While my journey was long and hard, I learned to make choices. And I had to pay the consequences for those choices. I learned how to manage my time and budget my money so that I could pay for classes. I struggled. I often failed. But in the end, I succeeded! I am extremely grateful that I was given a second chance to be in the BGS program. When I didn’t finish in the first eight years, I was devastated. But I also knew that I had set priorities of family and church callings first and then my education. I’m glad I did. I would have missed out on a lot of amazing Mom moments and opportunities to serve otherwise. I’m so happy I didn’t give up. I hope my children and grandchildren will look at my experience and know that they can keep going even when it’s hard.
Now I get to choose what I want to do with the rest of my life. While I will continue a life of learning, my focus will shift to serving more and sharing the things I have learned to make my little corner of the world a better place. My hope is to achieve part of that goal through my writing. That's the plan anyway!