For as much as my parents objected to many worldly things, they gave in on a surprising number of equally worldly things. Most notably, in my case, was the subject of ballet. I had always wanted to dance from a young age, and when I was 8, my parents finally agreed to let me begin to take classes. This was often something I was reminded to be grateful for–they weren’t as conservative as other families, after all.
In truth, I was grateful for it. I loved it with all my heart, and had great dreams of practicing hard and winding up as a prima ballerina for some famous worldwide touring company and performing all the famous ballets. There was only one problem with this idea… I wasn’t sure how I could maintain the necessary strenuous schedule kept by company dancers (classes and rehearsals all day, every day), and still be a loving wife and mother who homeschooled her kids. As the years went on, I slowly began to decide that as much as I loved dance, I probably wasn’t going to end up doing it professionally. After all, I’d wanted to be many other things growing up, including an astronaut and a dolphin trainer, but neither was really compatible with homeschooling 6+ kids (and I didn’t like swimming under water).
Fortunately for my overactive imagination and tendency to jump wholeheartedly into things, ever embracing some new idea for my life that would somehow either be forced to fit the wife and mother mold, or be tossed out the window, my parents decided it was time that my political apathy came to an end. I was summarily informed that I would be participating in a program called TeenPact, which involved me being shipped off to the capital for four days to learn how the government worked. I had always hated politics, but it did offer high school credit, and my parents wanted me to expand my horizons–within the scope they had predetermined, of course.
My first day at the capital had my introversion hitting me full force. I was wearing an ankle-length skirt and my hair was bound up in a snood so I could wear a headcovering, but still seem somewhat “modern.” That was the first time I had ever touched a boy, when one of the boys there came over and shook my hand. There was a brief moment of horror, and wondering if I had just committed a terrible sin, but I decided that it couldn’t have been that bad. Lightning hadn’t struck me, and this was a Christian group, after all.
At the end of the four-day program, I was utterly changed. Politics was my new love, and I wanted nothing more than to go into it myself so I could help make a difference, turn people back toward Christ, and somehow set myself up as an example for how godly women can affect politics. My intentions were never purposefully arrogant–I merely thought that if I want someone to look up to, but the person I wanted didn’t exist, then I should pioneer the way myself. Though my aspirations were gradually turning independent, I realized that I had to keep them quiet… I should be more concerned about how to be a proper senator’s wife, than a proper senator.
To that end, my mind turned in another direction… embracing another hot issue, and this one more appropriate to a young woman… and something immortalized thanks to Joshua Harris, that of courtship…