Christmas is the busiest time of year. So when I was asked - during the holiday rush - to slow down and write an autobiography so that my readers could know me better, I was stumped. Simply to say that I'm a mom wasn't right. I'm much more than that. Yet simply to write about my professional accomplishments wasn't right either. I'm much more than that.
Once I figured out what to write, here's what I came up with:
In my profession, I'm a journalist. In my heart, I'm a wife and mom. In reality, I'm a work in progress.
Fresh out of journalism school, I got the lowest level job at CNN that there was, and I was making so little money that I nearly had to go to the local food bank to feed myself. My brownbag lunches consisted of a can of tuna fish, saltines and an apple. But who cared? I was working at CNN! It was a dream-come-true for a girl who grew up on a small farm in Ohio.
Growing up, my grandpa would tell me to turn off cartoons and watch something "real" like the news. I have fond memories of sitting next to him in the living room of his white farm house, smelling the dirt on his overalls from his day spent tending the garden, watching Tom Brokaw, Peter Jennings and Dan Rather report on the world's happenings. My grandfather's love of news rubbed off on me. Years later, when he passed away, my family unearthed in his kitchen a cassette tape recording I'd made as a child, pretending I was the reporter. "Breaking news on the Clark farm. The cows escaped the barbed-wire fence, and they're still on the loose. Details at 6," I said in my 8-year-old voice.
After CNN, I worked a few more journalism gigs before quitting to stay home with my first son. Yet writing still runs in my veins, so write I will.
But there's more.
I am also a wife of 10 years; a mom to three lovely children, Harrison, Hugh and Lilia; a lover of decorating my home; an ice cream junkie; and a former runner who longs to start up again. If I had to make a confession, it would be that I've never put one of my kids' pictures in an album. I'm an early riser who detests coffee. Laundry is my greatest nemesis, and I know it's winning the battle when my husband looks in his underwear drawer and says, "Oh no." As for the rest of the housework, my motto is, if you want to see me, stop by anytime; if you want to see my house, you better make an appointment. Most of all, I rest in the peace that comes from knowing the Lord.
Being a mom takes me to places I never thought I could go - to the depths of love and to the heights of frustration. And I'm glad I get to share a few of my Mommy Moments with you.
- Shasta Clark is a St. Clairsville native who lives in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, with her husband, two sons and daughter. Her e-mail address is email@example.com.