I didn't always want to serve a mission. I always thought I wanted to get married and finish school. I'll be honest; a mission seemed like my back up plan. But then I realized I wasn't ready to get married anytime soon. It wasn't a big race.
Last year when they made the mission change, I had to rethink my entire future. I always thought I had time to think about going on a mission, but then all of a sudden, everything changed. I had thought about it for weeks and I knew it would be a great experience, but deep inside I knew I wasn't ready. So I came to the conclusion that I would wait and see what happens.
I didn't really want to go back to Utah State for fall semester and I wasn't sure why. All of my friends were there and I was ready to have fun with them again. I had tuition and housing already paid for, so I didn't really have a choice. So I went to school and decided I was over the whole "hanging out every night" scene. My roommates felt the same way as well. I think it's just a part of growing up and getting older. We literally went to bed at 10:30 every night and didn't do much with our social lives.
I also wasn't doing so hot in my schoolwork and I didn't even know if I still wanted to major in social work anymore. I just couldn't get my mind to completely focus. I was totally elsewhere. So here I was stressed out with what I wanted to do with my life and I was trying to picture my future and I couldn't. I was in a rut.
Then one day, I was reading my cousins letter she sent me, I was so envious of her experiences. She wrote, "It is so cool to get to be there when the Indonesians experience the truth for the first time. When they first feel the spirit, or the first time they really pray, read the book of mormon, come to church, and find out that they really do have an amazing Heavenly Father who loves them. There's nothing else like it." And all of a sudden, it hit me like a ton of bricks. I wanted to go on a mission. The spirit was so strong and I then cried for a few hours because I was so shocked and a little scared. Because how often is the answer Heavenly Father sends us the thing that we are afraid of? Going on a mission wasn't really part of my plan and it threw me off. I was afraid I was going to be a bad missionary.
As the days went by, it was so clear to me that I needed to go on a mission. I also understand why I didn't feel this way earlier when they changed the age. Heavenly Father was preparing the people and me. He was waiting for the right timing and I needed to know for myself. I didn't want to go when every other girl was going just because everyone was doing it. But now that it's been a year, I realized I want to go, for me.
And a cool fact: my brother is on his mission in Pittsburgh and he wrote me a letter about having me serve a mission the same day I decided to serve! The Lord truly knew that this is what I needed to do.