When I graduated from college with a degree in education and began working as a teacher, I had a plan. The scholarship that helped get me through college required that I teach in North Carolina for four years after graduation. I had also begun to work as a fan-site blogger, writing about my favorite books and movies and had just been given the opportunity to travel to Chicago to tour the Divergent film set and interview the cast. And so the plan was set. Teach my required four years, pursue a master’s degree in communication and social media, then move on to bigger and more glamorous things.
But, as we all seem to learn at some point in life, our best-laid plans have nothing compared to the plans that God has for us. What happened to my family between December 2013 and today has become most of the heart behind my blog, Messy Milestones. When you lose six close family members in just over two years, the world begins to look nothing like it did before grief and loss crept its way in.
When I lost my grandmother and aunt less than 48 hours apart in September, I was in the midst of my third graduate class in social media. I was committed (financially and personally) to this path but losing these two people completely changed my view on work, life, and fulfillment. No longer could I see myself parked in front of a computer for a living and I discovered that God was directing me to take my life down a new path. I already knew that God had given me the passion for working with young children, but spending so much time in the medical setting had me considering how I might use this passion to help children that are in the hospital instead.
I felt the stirring in my heart to begin to pursue a career as a Child Life Specialist. The decision to change my plans that had been so firmly set in place really was a reminder of the beauty that can unfold when we loosen the reins and trust God to move in our lives. Not long after withdrawing from my social media program, the words of Psalm 40:5 found their way to me; “Many, Lord my God, are the wonders you have done, the things you planned for us. None can compare with you; were I to speak and tell of your deeds, they would be too many to declare” - Psalm 40:5
I’m Ashley! A teacher and a writer, I am a daughter of Jesus and everyday I learn what it means and looks