There’s a Saturday Night Live video going viral saluting the sacrifices moms often make at Christmastime. While her family celebrates all the fun and exciting new gifts they’ve received, the mom meanwhile is left with only a robe that was purchased on sale.
The skit hits close to home in how it hilariously depicts some of the sacrifices moms make for their families.
In addition to those perfectly wrapped presents under the tree and the delicious meals, raising a family requires love, patience, and often professional sacrifice.
Many moms take months or even years off from their jobs outside of the home. And returning to a career after caring for children can bring about a multitude of emotions.
For Spartanburg mom and speech-language pathologist, Ashley Patterson, rejoining her profession also reunited her with her passion for serving children after years of raising her own.
Read Ashley’s story:
“I feel very blessed this Christmas season to have had the opportunity over the past four months to return to a profession I love after spending a number of years as a mom focused on family responsibilities. I first encountered a speech therapist over 25 years ago as I was finishing my degree in elementary education and student teaching. The diverse and unique needs of the students successfully attending classes at the local elementary school I was assigned to intrigued me. During my time teaching, I often noted that students had times indicated on the daily schedule for ‘speech.’ As I was preparing to leave one day, I saw the therapist who came to my room when students had an assigned ‘speech’ time and asked if I could observe one day. After spending that half hour with one of the students in speech, I knew that I wanted to learn how to work with students in this capacity. I graduated several years later with a degree in speech-language pathology and began a career I have loved ever since!
I first worked as a therapist in a large public elementary school outside of Atlanta where I served the special needs population at that particular school for several years. I relocated to be with my husband in Columbia, SC and worked as a traveling therapist serving pre-K through high school for Richland County School District while my husband attended medical school. As my husband completed medical school and our oldest son was born, we moved to southern Texas for residency training and I had the blessing of being able to stay home with our growing family until all three of our boys were in elementary school. During this time, I returned to work as a therapist for a small non-profit preschool in our local community serving children with special needs, particularly children on the Autism spectrum. In 2017 our family relocated to the Upstate of South Carolina to be closer to extended family.
As my own children began to graduate and head off to college, I knew I wanted to return in some capacity to a career I have loved for over 20 years. I was blessed to have the opportunity to interview in August of this year with McCulloh Therapeutic Solutions and am so grateful to be able to return to serving a diverse range of students in various settings as a therapist. The field has definitely grown and changed through the years as medical advancements have given us more in-depth knowledge of learning differences and technology has given us the ability to communicate in ways unimaginable when I first met a speech therapist. Many things have changed, but the joy of being a part of a child’s journey to communicate has not. As I finish therapy with my last student each day, I know that I am a little more the person God created me to be because I had the privilege to serve them through the gift of communication. This is a priceless joy and I am truly grateful to all who have helped me be able to return to serving others and sharing their journey.”
Are you a speech language pathologist who wants to be a part of a caring team? We have openings! Join our team!