I have a disability. My disability is not physical - I look normal, I speak well. My disability is not mental - I process things at a relatively normal speed (give or take the amount of sugar consumed at given period). My disability is something imposed upon me by the actions of others; it is that I am the product of a stereotype.

I am Mormon. Let me rephrase that: I am a Mormon woman. This simple fact has subjected me to many preeminent assumptions, some accurate but most completely false. But while I live my religion with a great and utmost respect and testimony, I am not a cookie-cutter replica of the world’s fictional impression of a Mormon lady.

I am twenty years old, not married (nor remotely close to that), and pursuing a rigorous academic career. I can’t cook a casserole for more than four people, my piano skills are mediocre, and I have never touched a book from The Work and the Glory series.

I don't drink. I don't smoke. I don't have sex. I tend to omit four-lettered, colloquial swear words from my vocabulary. I go to church every week. I read my scriptures daily. I want a big family, and will most likely drive a Suburban (Haha just kidding...But I'm down with a Denali).

I don't think it is the labels we wear that make us who we are; it's what we do while wearing those stereotypes that define the type of person we choose to be. Conform to them. Break them. Do what makes you happy and forget about what society expects. Because society tends to let most of my expectations down, anyway ;)


Richardinhingham said...

You are one interesting woman Natalie!

I am very curious about your conversion to a member of the LDS.

I will be reading up on your life choices. One thing for sure, you will have PLENTY of options in your life--you have so much talent, such seriousness of purpose, and such beauty. I am very pleased to be "lurking your life" as you go forward. You are quite an inspiration to even us old people!

Darcy's uncle Richard

Anonymous said...

I hear ya girl! I am a fellow member and I agree that there is not a "cookie cutter" member among us (despite stereotypes). I have a solid testimony in our shared faith and think that the sterotypes either come from just "culture," like any religion or group, or from those imposed upon us by a society that often misunderstands us. Either way, you rock and represent the LDS/Mormon woman with "Awesomeness!" You are the type that will be a wonderful role model to many young women!

Tara Bodrero said...

Love your blog and love this. I got to deal with the whole cookie cutter thing when Josh came home from his mission and did not go back...every mormon male is suppoed to go on a full two year mission right? I am glad that you don't care about the cookie cutter-ness and just want to be yourself. More people than you know look up to you...Chol being one of them. She constantly reads your blog and tells my whole family how smart and talented you are. She will most likely read this and pound me later for mentioning it but I wanted to let you know that there are a ton of people who really just love you and look up to you.

Visible Voice said...

Love this...

I'd say more but I'm typing with one hand...holding a baby.

But rock on!

Alexis Kaye said...

You're fabulous. Forget about the stereotypes. Although I agree, they are frustrating. We decide our own lives. YOU, are deciding an amazing one! Law school? HOLLA!

Heidi said...

You. Are. Awesome. I very much needed to hear that right now.