Because no one that lives in this house actually reads what I write here, I am going to share with you my final essay for my English course this term. I just turned it in to my instructor, so who knows what kind of grade I will get on it, but here it is. I have spent a few hours writing, and editing this and I do hope that you enjoy it.
One Right Decision
I was all of 18 years old when I became a mother and a wife. During this marriage I was blessed with four wonderful children and one wandering husband. Twelve years later, I was a single mother living in a home that I could not afford on my own in a world that I no longer understood. Forging my way ahead, I took some turns in the wrong direction and with discovery and blessing, I learned that my Heavenly Father values me. Four years after my divorce, I met a wonderful man and he lived 2,600 miles away. I flew there. He flew here. There is only so much flying a new relationship can handle. He moved. He moved from his home town, from his property, from living next door to his aging father, to be with me and my four children. We quickly married and my children adored him. They thrived having a father figure in the home and only months later, he became “Dad” to them. Eleven short months after our wedding, I gave birth to our daughter. A daddy in his own right and happy as could be, almost. My husband hated my career and he hated the weather in my home town. My home would never be home to him. He was miserable, but he would never admit to it. I just knew, as one does when something isn’t quite right with their spouse.
My oldest child began his senior year in high school just weeks before our daughter was born, and the next oldest was just starting junior high. Scared and with trembling words, I approached my husband to discuss his misery. “Do you want to move back home?” I asked. His clear blue eyes welled with tears, and he just nodded his head. I drew in a shaky breath and told him that if he could just wait until the school year ended, we would start the plans and go in the summer. I don’t believe that I had ever seen him so relieved. I advised my supervisor at work that I would be leaving in the summer and moving across the country. I told my family, we told the children and we began to plan. It honestly took the entire school year to get ready to go, but when June rolled around we were ready. My notice had been given to my supervisor at the appropriate time, I had said goodbye to my friends and my twelve year career. The moving van arrived and we loaded up. For once, I finally felt as if I had made the right decision. I had finally decided after being a mom for eighteen years, that I was going to be a wife and a mom before I was anything else.
The decision to be a wife and a mother shouldn’t be as hard as it was. I loved my husband and I loved each of my children as fiercely as humanly possible. Why was it so horribly difficult to move away from my hometown? Why was it so hard to do what God intended for me to do? As we trekked across the country with a dog, several fish, and children in the weighed down car towing some of our belongings, there was nothing but time to ponder. I sat in the passenger seat for six very long days holding a map and providing directions to my dedicated husband along the route. We made it to his hometown and with great relief stretched our legs and found a rental home. As the days turned into weeks and the weeks into months, I hadn’t found a job yet. Finally at the six month mark, I was offered a position in my previous field of work and when I told my husband, he simply asked me why I had applied and stated in a matter of fact manner that he didn’t want me to go back to work.
I can’t say that I was completely shocked by my husband’s words, but I was confused, disappointed, and felt utterly lost. I had always worked. I had worked for twenty years and the time I had just spent finding a job was pointless. It was then that I remembered that I had decided before we moved that I was going to be a wife and a mother before anything else. Feeling a door slam in my face was the reminder that I needed. Slowly, the days crawled by as I felt overwhelmed with my new duties of wife and mom. I continued to drive the kids to school for drop off and pick up. I continued to make my husband’s lunch each morning, but it was out of duty not of love.
Seven months after our arrival in my new town, we began to build our family home on the property that my sweet husband owned. Every day, every step of the way, the money that I had set aside for retirement was building the home that I was to live in for the rest of my life. While I was excited at the home building process and the idea of finally owning a home, I was terrified that I would be stuck in this horrible state of self-misery that I once saw in my husband. We moved into our newly built home with fresh paint and brand new cabinetry one year after our family arrived in my husband’s home town. As the days crept by, I realized that I was missing something in my life. I was missing a piece of me – a really big piece.
I found my local church building and rediscovered my Savior, Jesus Christ. I started attending my Sunday meetings, I began to pray, and I opened my scriptures again for the first time in what seemed like forever. I accepted a calling to be a Primary teacher and I learned from seven year olds, the love that I have for my Savior could grow exponentially. Taking my small child to church wasn’t easy, taking my teenage son to church wasn’t easy, but my older daughters were a breeze. We attended as a family. We grew together in Christ as a family. While our family isn’t perfect, the love that our Savior has for us is and it is that love which has taught me. His love has taught me that being a wife and a mom is enough. Not only is it enough, it is perfect for me. I slowly crawled out of the darkness that I had allowed myself to wallow in and have flourished. I now get up in the morning to the alarm clock and happily pack my husband’s lunch, wash dishes, cut grass, do laundry, and all the other mundane things that come with being a mom and a wife. I love my family, and I love the gospel of Jesus Christ.
The one right decision for me was moving across the country and leaving the comfort of my family and hometown. It was this choice that lead me back to my Savior. I have grown into a loving, happy wife. I have grown into loving the carpool and weekly grocery shopping trips. I have learned to love the playground with my toddler, story time, bed time, and all the in between times. The decision to put my husband in front of me, a costly decision at the time, was the one decision that I know for certain was the right one in my life.
Well, there it is… I am so nervous to post this, but I suppose a click won’t hurt. Thank you for reading my essay, and I pray that as you did, that you had a moment of clarity about parenthood or marriage. God bless you.