Kiddo, at ripe old age of seven, knows exactly what he wants to be when he grows up. He wants to build roads. Or build a real R2D2 and C3PO. I try to explain that he doesn't want to be the guy on the asphalt truck at three in the morning sucking fumes for minimum wage, he wants to be an engineer and design the roads. Building robots (engineering again) is another fabulous choice and I prey he did not inherit my utter inaptitude for math and science. He can be anything he wants to be (so long as it's legal and preferably doesn't involve exotic dancing). As a parent, I just want him to be happy in life. All he has to do is work hard, get good grades, go to college and his possibilities will be limitless.
I was always told the same thing growing up. And I believed every word of it. I followed the directions to a "T". So why does it seem as if my possibilities more limited than the wild game selection on a vegan menu?
I wonder how many people actually wake each day thrilled to be spending another day at their place of employment, knowing they are fulfilling a lifelong dream, a passion, and truly enjoying what they do. They don't just have a job--their job is an extension of who they are. Is it dumb luck or a chance of a lifetime that falls into their self-satisfied laps? More likely they actually know what they want and they have the drive, talent, and tenacity to go after it.
Jobs I have dreamed of over the years:
Photographer (National Geographic)
Magazine Editor (Vogue or Rolling Stone)
Marine Biologist/Killer Whale trainer (until I discovered I was terrified of sharks)
Actress (must be nominated for Oscar)
Advertising art director/copywriter
Art gallery owner
Jobs I have actually held:
Sales Girl/Ear Piercer
Charitable Giving Solicitor
Custom Framer/Art Sales Associate
Department Store Department Manager
Bridal Gown Salon Manager
Social Services Worker
Stay At Home Mom/Jane of All Trades
I think it may have more to do with courage. So many of the things I have wanted to do in my life are creative and involve spilling my heart and soul onto a piece of paper for others to read, critique, and most likely reject. To make it you need a tough skin, yet as I grow older I find that my skin is thinner and less resilient, far more prone to injury, and takes longer to heal. It has been damaged by sunshine and time. I find it far easier to hide in the shade to prevent more wounds than to slather on layers of protection, a virtual suit of armor, and face the chance of gaining more scars.
To succeed that must change.
When I grow up I want to be brave.
"We gain strength, and courage, and confidence by each experience in which we really stop to look fear in the face... we must do that which we think we cannot. "