I started college fresh out of high school, on a scholarship - the only way my family could afford to send me. I went blazing in, making a 4.0 GPA but without a clue as to what I wanted from a career. I plugged away for two years, first as an elementary education major (that lasted one semester), then psychology, then English...because it was my favorite subject. The pressure of keeping my grades high enough to keep my scholarship began to wear on me after the first few months. I became more and more exhausted and discouraged.
Then in May 1999, I met Robby. I had no idea at that first meeting that he would change my life. I spent a year getting to know him as a friend, then in May 2000 he asked me for our first date. A month later, he asked me to marry him, and I said yes. I made the decision to marry the man of my dreams, become a pastor's wife, and quit college.
Life marched on. Robby and I married in September 2000. I worked for a while, then quit my job to become a stay at home mom. We moved several times, and I finally returned to work. Although I loved my job (still do!) I dreamed of returning to being a stay at home mom until reality set in - it was a thing of the past. That's when I started thinking about college.
I decided that if I had to work (and I do) then I wanted to make good money at it. I started doing some research and found that working in a dentist's office really interested me. More research led to a college just 30 minutes away that offered a dental hygiene program. I thought about it. I prayed about it. Robby and I talked about it. The thought of returning to school as a 30 year old, married, working mom of two terrified me. I talked myself out of it and back into it several times. Then, last December, I made the leap - I registered for classes, bought my books, and paid my tuition. There was no backing out.
Now, a year later, I've survived some of the hardest classes I've ever taken...and made really good grades in them, much to my surprise. I've finished my prerequesites and turned in my application to the dental hygiene program. I'm still terrified, but I'm glad I did it. I'm thankful for my family and friends who continue to support me. I'm thankful for my husband, my biggest fan and cheerleader. And I'm thankful I took the very bold, very scary leap of faith to return to college and to chase my dream until it becomes a reality.