When you’re a child and you’re dreaming about life as a grown up you never quite picture it the way it actually is. You don’t picture how much it will suck having to pay rent every month for a scummy apartment with a dishwasher that leaks. You don’t picture working long hours day after day only to pcik up your paycheck and literally sob over the measly earnings that could barely cover the pair of Kate Spade heels you’ve been lusting after. You don’t imagine sighing to yourself and being forced to make the sad decision “Kate Spade shoes or a roof over my head” ? And then continuing to torture yourself by online window shopping in bed for the remainder of the evening.
When I was seven or eight I would lay in bed and record my dreams in my diary. I wanted to be a teacher, I wanted to have four daughters, I wanted to have a puppy and a house with a room with a trampoline floor and a rock wall. At 12 I declared I would only ever shop at J.Crew once I began my career as a Kindergarden teacher which was really quite ambitious given that I also hoped to live in a posh apartment in the city and spend my summers traveling in Europe. As I grew older and arguably “wiser” I thought to myself I want to get married barefoot in a field of daisies with a baby cow frolicking around with a bow around its neck at my wedding. I thought I wanted to join the Peace Corps, to work as an environmental scientist, to marry my equally as hippie high school boyfriend who also preferred life with dreadlocks and sans shoes. Who needed money or rules or hair brushes when you had love and daisy crowns and henna tattoos?
Then I got to college and the day came I was sort of forced to choose a path for myself and suddenly I felt as if I was at the base of a tree. I was at the base of a tree and there were branches jotting out in every direction and I could choose to climb up to any branch and each branch had limbs and twigs growing from it that I could also “follow” but instead of choosing a branch and seeing where it would lead me…I just sat there paralyzed in fear. Wanting everything can be just as bad as wanting nothing because when you want to help save the rainforest and teach kids how to read and work as a buyer for Nordstrom and write for Glamour magazine…all of a sudden you can’t pick a path and just stick with it because you’re terrified your choice will force you to forfeit all of your other dreams…and in a way it does.
A big part of me is still that little girl that wants to be Barbie, not because I have blonde hair and lust after an extensive shoe collection, but because there are so many roles I long to fill. My short time working in marketing has affirmed that I can see myself working in the field. I am soaking everything up like a little sea sponge and I love it. However I have commitment issues. My heart still pulls me in so many directions. I don’t believe I have a dream job, but rather a dream “feeling”. I want a career that energizes me, that challenges me, that forces me to learn and grow (don’t we all?). I want room for creativity, I want to incorporate writing into my career and I really really just want an office with a turquoise accent wall and lots of natural light (someday people).
How did you decide what you wanted to be as a grown up? Sometimes I wonder why I struggle so much with this endeavor while so many others seem to have had it figured out since they were five (trust me I’ve had more than my share of venting cry sessions over the issue).
P.S. I still want to be a Victoria’s Secret Angel obviously although I thought I should update you guys that I ate three carrot cake cupcakes yesterday so my progress might be a little hindered on that front.