I've aspired to be a CRNA since I was in the 8th grade, when I heard what they did and that they made 'good money'. So I admit that the first attraction had something to do with the money.
I then followed a CRNA while in nursing school
then again when I was in ICU. My motivation comes not only from wanting to do anesthesia but mainly from a job satisfaction standpoint. Every CRNA I have ever met, have said they LOVE their job. Ask an ICU nurse or especially floor nurse that and you get varied answers and sometimes just a look! As an ICU nurse, I could NEVER go back to floor nursing. Dont get me wrong, I have just as much respect for those nurses. But I'm thinking that as a CRNA, I will also feel that way about ICU nursing. I'm proud that I am a good nurse and I just want to be the best that I can be. For me, that direction and passion is anesthesia.
Its intimidating tho, because its an enormous responsibility but I feel that school and instructors will prepare me to be the best practitioner I can be. Thats another reason, senior SRNAs seem so confident doing what it is they will be doing when they graduate. Look at new grads from nursing school, we were scared puppies! not that srnas are NOT scared, but i do see a difference.
So my motivation is that in addition to what you mentioned: People want more autonomy, respect, the chance to have a bigger impact on their patients' care.