Well, here I am at the age of 22. I’ve never been this old before and it feels…old. Being 22 isn’t much different from being 21, but it is still something to be celebrated. I am accomplishing many goals I made for myself and I haven’t died yet! Just 21 years and 3 months ago I looked like this:
I think I was a pretty cute baby, but I think I might be slightly biased. Well in 22 years, a lot has happened. I grew up in a wonderful family with 2 wonderful brothers and an equally wonderful sister. Lots of wonderfuls, I know but I feel like that word best describes my family. Anyway, I went to Kindergarten for a semester before I was home schooled for the remaining year and all the way up to the end of 2nd grade. I loved being home schooled, but I was excited to go back to public school, especially because we had gotten ahead in our coursework.Â Â One of my assignments was to write in my journal, which I have consistently continued throughout my life. I love looking back at that old journal and seeing my life through the eyes of a 6 year old. I didn’t spell a lot of words right and my handwriting is awful but it is hilarious to see the things I thought were important enough to write in there. From there, we moved to DeSoto, Missouri where I spent 9 years. I went to Sunrise Elementary school, which was a pretty small school considering it was K-8th grade in the same building. I showed the school to Brett one day and he couldn’t suppress a tiny chuckle. Looking at it now, I am amazed at how small it really was. It was perfect for me though. I made wonderful friends I still contact every now and then today (thanks to Facebook), and I had some great experiences there. I learned how to play the flute, bells, and alto saxophone. I was involved in a school choir starting in 4th grade. I played volleyball and danced at the local dance studio. I made some great memories with friends.
From Sunrise, I went to North County High School in Bonne Terre, Missouri. It was even further south! There were 1000 kids total in the high school, which was the perfect size for me. In high school, I stopped playing my instruments and dancing and instead focused on choir and volleyball. I loved playing volleyball throughout high school. I played in the middle front, which was a great position for me because it allowed me to spike and block with minimal digging. I was a terrible back row passer. I also sang in the choir. By my Junior year I was in 2 choirs: concert choir and the NC Singers which was the sing and dance choir. I auditioned for and was accepted for all-district choir both my Junior and Senior years. The summer before my Senior year my family moved to Herculaneum, Missouri (a good middle point between St. Louis city and DeSoto). I commuted down to North County for my Senior year because it was my last year there and I had enough credits to graduate early, which I did. I finished in December 2005, but officially graduated in April 2006.
I got a job at Aeropostale starting in January 2006 and worked there until I went to BYU in August. I met the boy I was going to marry in June 2006 at an institute class through a friend and impatiently waited for every Thursday night so I could see him again. Finally, finally he asked me out on a date and it was glorious. We went to the St. Louis Art Museum. From there, I started my freshman year at Brigham Young University. It was the only college I ever wanted to go to. I didn’t have a back up plan in case I didn’t get in. I just knew I had to be there. Brett lived 2 blocks away from me, so I got to see him every day.
Freshman year was a busy year for me. I was Relief Society President of my ward, I was working at Aero and then at the Physics & Astronomy Department on campus (20 hrs/week), I had a full load of busy classes, I was involuntarily volunteering 10 hours a week (class assignment), and I declared my major as Psychology. By the end of that year, Brett and I decided we were going to get married. He proposed to me on June 2, 2007 and we were married on December 28, 2007. Married life has been better than I ever imagined it would be. I feel so blessed to have a wonderful and supportive husband.
We got married in the middle of my sophomore year at BYU, so I finished that up before we moved to San Jose, California. We loved living in San Jose. We made a lot of wonderful friends and we were part of an incredibly sweet and caring ward. We miss them all! Brett started his first job in the “real world” at PriceWaterhouseCoopers as a Consultant. He didn’t like that too much, but he stayed there for almost 2 years. In the meantime, I took some BYU classes online through their Independent Study program and got a job at Systat Software. I did some human resources work along with some accounting work. It was a great job for me and I loved working there, but I also felt like I needed to go back to school full-time and knock out a bunch of credits. Since I obtained California residency last September, I could pay in-state tuition. I only had some generals to finish and a few “filler” credits to get to the 120 I need to graduate from BYU so with a heavy heart, I quit Systat and enrolled in 2 community colleges close by. I took 18 classes in 7 months! I passed them all with high grades.
Brett finally decided he had had enough of working at PwC and accepted a job in Walnut Creek at Verizon Wireless. We made the decision to move at the end of June. Brett now helps app developers get their apps in the Verizon store and a whole lot of other technical things I don’t really comprehend. (Good job honey!) I finished up a few remaining classes and here I am. I’m finishing the last class of my bachelor’s degree in just a few weeks. I have 4 lessons, one essay and a final before I have officially completed all the requirements for my bachelor’s degree.
Like I said, a lot has happened in the last 22 years but I am grateful for them all. It has made me who I am today. I look forward to the next 22 years of my life and the next 22 after that. And hopefully another 22 after that!