Monday, January 11, 2010

TMI: The Rest of the Story...

First, I want to say thanks for the congrats all! Secondly, I was prompted by a friends' comment (as well as comments I have received from many women I admire and dear friends alike) to share my story and the reasons behind my decision to postpone grad school, and to stay home with my baby now instead (and not both at the same time). Thirdly - this is kind of a long, boring post but it is important to me to share all of these feelings and thoughts of mine. They have been stewing in my mind for quite some time. I hope they are helpful or thought-provoking to you, if not - feel free to ignore them. However, I will be counting them as an important journal entry for the Hepworth family history. : ) So, here it goes...

Before I get into this post I would like to mention that I will be graduating with my undergraduate degree in German (with an emphasis on literature) this June.

I took the GRE last Summer and had my application all but submitted for BYU's English program. Though I had previously thought it was a perfect fit, I just didn't feel good about the program, and the classes I took as prerequisites were some of my least favorite classes at BYU. I checked out several other programs in my search for the perfect program for me. All I knew was that the right program at the right place, and right time, was not lining up. I felt confused, and unsure, and uncomfortable with the plan I had in place.

I had the thought one evening, to ask Squire if he thought that maybe we should start our family. I had had the thought for a few days, but was too proud to ask him. (After all, I was going to grad school.) But, when I did bring it up, Squire and I started talking and we couldn't stop. There was an excitement, and a peace which I hadn't felt for quite some time. The night I first mentioned the idea of having baby Hepworth instead of Master Jami, something felt right. We talked almost the entire night because we couldn't sleep. We were jittery about it, but it was good. We told God we decided to change our plans, and we felt His confirmation.

However exciting and right our decision to start our family was for us, this also meant reorganizing our priorities and time commitments, and making changes. While it may be possible for some families, grad school is not really an option for me right now (I would like to emphasize right now) because Squire will be going to medical school in one year. This would mean med school, year two of graduate school, and baby Hepworth all at the same time! Where we live right now (where we will live for med school we still don't know), we don't really have any family support, and I would not put my baby in daycare (nor would I have the money to do so even if I did support the idea.) Squire will be working and doing full-time school when the baby comes so he will not be able to be very helpful with the baby because it is so essential he get good grades (so he can get into med school) and make money (so we can eat).

I do still plan on going to get my masters or even my doctorate but it will be when the timing is right for our family, and it won't be for quite a while. That was part of why our decision was such a big (and difficult) one for me in particular. I knew if we chose to start our family now, that grad school would have to be put on hold - for quite some time. It was also very humbling to me to realize that God is in control, He has a plan for me, and that I just don't fully understand it yet (though I plan and plan and try to pretend like I know -- I really don't).

I don't know why I feel so compelled to tell my whole story. I just feel like I need to tell my part of the story completely. I think people are curious about why people make the decisions they do, and I want to share that with you all because I believe you do care. While I have taken on multiple tasks and challenges throughout my life, this I feel so strongly, has to be the main one I focus on for the time being. I believe so deeply (just ask Squire - he gets an earful of this every day) that every woman should learn everything she can and get all the schooling she desires, and that she should be wholeheartedly supported in accomplishing the things she desires to accomplish. But, we women (let's count the men in on this one too), though we be amazing, cannot do all the great things that we want to do as well as we would like, all at the same time, nor should we make ourselves feel guilty if we don't attempt to. I feel like being a full-time mother to my baby will be a growing experience all on it's own, but most importantly - I know it is what my Heavenly Father expects of me at this time.

I want to emphasize that I don't believe that every woman should follow the path that I have described as the one I will be taking myself. Every family is completely unique and has to make those decisions for themselves. But, as a closing thought I would like to say that I hope each one of us is willing to do what God asks us to do, when He asks us to do it. I hope that when we do do whatever it is He asks us to do, that we have the faith to believe it will work for our benefit. There is a scripture from the Book of Mormon that has been on my mind lately. As some background, the young Prophet Nephi and his family were living in the wilderness fleeing from Jerusalem because they were told it would be destroyed because of wickedness. But, while in the wilderness the women bore children and suffered many difficult times. However, they were consistently provided for by the Lord. This is what Nephi said about the experience and their obedience in leaving Jerusalem:

1 Nephi 17:3 "And thus we see that the commandments of God must be fulfilled. And if it so be that the children of men keep the commandments of God he doth nourish them, and strengthen them, and provide means whereby they can accomplish the thing which he has commanded them; wherefore, he did provide means for us while we did sojourn in the wilderness." www.lds.org

Though I don't know how everything will work out, I know it will work out somehow because God loves me and is aware of me. He loves and is aware of you too! I know also, someday, I will get the degree(s) I desire. I'll just be getting them in the Lord's timing, instead of my own. And in the meantime, I'll do all I can to prepare to be the best Mamma I can be. I'm absolutely thrilled about the new experiences that await me in motherhood. : )

8 comments:

  1. You are awesome! You are doing the right thing for yourself and for your family! Thank you for sharing your thoughts and for letting me read it and experience a glimpse in your life. I am excited for you and Squire. Having babies is awesome! You will be a great mama with a bachelors degree! Don't forget what you already accomplished in schooling and how far you have come. More schooling will come.
    Love Emilie

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  2. I had that same struggle when I felt promted to start a family. I wanted so bad to finish my degree, but in the Lord's time I definitely will. Congrats on your fun, exciting and VERY special news. Can't wait to hear about more:) Being a mom is the absolute greatest thing I could ever imagine!

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  3. That is so exciting! Congratulations! You will be a great mom, and I know you'll love having a few years to just focus on baby Hepworth. After Hallie was born it would bring me to tears when I would think of how grateful I was that we were in a place in our lives that I could stay home with her. This is coming from a person who spent way too much time being bitter that we didn't have a baby earlier. I am reminded of how much Heavenly Father loves us every time I look at our baby, and that at least He knew enough to withhold this blessing from us until the timing was right. There is nothing better than feeling at peace with your decisions! This will be such a great New adventure for you guys!

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  4. Thanks for sharing Jami, others faith is always inspiring to me!-
    Sherece

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  5. Amen to you Jami. Sometimes I feel bad that I loaf around the house and mooch off of Greg, but when it comes down it to, I couldn't be the type of mom I want to be and the type of teacher or the type of student all at the same time, so I picked the most important one--Rex--and will work on the others later.

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  6. I believe that the moment you decide to set yourself aside and start a family is the moment your soul becomes a mother. In my short time of being a mother, having already made the sacrifice of setting certain things aside has made all of the other little sacrifices a little easier. Thanks for sharing your thoughts!

    Also, I kept checking your other blog and it never re-routed! Thanks for the comment! I'm reading like mad to catch up.

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  7. First, thanks for reminding me you went private and it doesn't update! I had forgotten and just figured you left the blogging world in your rear view mirror.

    Next, I really liked what you had to say about making your decision(s). It's a tough one for women especially because it has so much of a finality to it. Like, now I am Mother. But there is a season for everything. Julie Beck spoke to our stake RS last year and basically said: Not every woman needs to be doing family history, attending the temple constantly, taking on huge callings right now. Leave that to the women in the right season. Some women are in the season to take care of their children the best they can.

    One thing I'm really starting to appreciate as a SAHM is the ability I have to learn all I want outside of school. It won't amount to a degree, but still a lot of knowledge. I've just become my own dietitian! Next, I might take up photography... maybe toy design... maybe teaching preschool music out of my house...

    Last, how are you feeling? :)

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  8. Congratulations Jamie and Squire. You both will be wonderful parents!
    Our family is so excited for you! (And for your mom and dad to be grandparents!)

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