What do you want to be when you grow up? I still ask myself this question on a pretty regular basis. Considering that I am forty, I find it kind of amusing. Amusing because a teacher of sixteen years and mother to a two year old should pretty much have it figured out by now and because I assume many people look at me and decide that I am a grown up. But the truth is I don’t. I don’t completely know what I want to be, I don’t always see myself as a grown up and that is perfectly okay with me.
Whenever the lottery hits a new all time high, my husband and I play. After we buy the tickets, we sit around discussing all the things we would do with the money. Buy a new house, go on vacation and I inevitably tell him that I would go back to school. He laughs at me and I defend myself saying that I would become a physician’s assistant or chemical engineer. I love to learn and I like helping people. He then reminds me that I pretty much do those kind of things already; I teach and I help children. We laugh, but I start thinking again about what I would do if I could do anything.
Please don’t get me wrong, I love my job. I tell my students all the time that I have the best job ever; I get paid to talk and read. How awesome is that? I have no intentions of leaving the classroom, it is my calling. But I still like to dream. Dream that if I could do anything in the world what would it be. I have dreamt of writing a young adult fiction novel for years. I think every English teacher secretly has a book idea. I have it outlined and drawn some sketches for an important setting, but I haven’t gotten much further. However, rather than writing this book, I started blogging. I had no idea how much I was going to love this. The writing is manageable and enjoyable; it is a dream that didn’t even exist when I was a kid.
I think that dreaming, setting goals, working hard and knowing that you can always improve yourself is one of the things that can help to keep you young. Or at least let you think that you are still young. I believe that part of the reason that I don’t really feel like a grown up is because I am not done yet. I am not done becoming the person that I will be. I still have more growing up to do. I want to learn more, do more and be more. I want to try new things, which will also mean that I will fail sometimes, but I am okay with that too. I want to keep growing up and keep dreaming. I want to live my life always having a new goal to achieve or skill to master.
I am a mother, I am a teacher and I am a dreamer, but I am so much more. I will continue to learn, grow, laugh, cry and smile. I will keep dreaming of what I will be and accept the changes that it will bring. I will continue to ask myself, what do you want to be when you grow up?