Monday, July 15, 2013

"What do you want to be...?"

When I was a kid people would always ask me "What do you want to be when you grow up?"  I never had an answer to that question.  I don't even remember secretly having an answer I was embarrassed to tell others.  The answer just wasn't there.  I'm not sure I could relate to the question at all.

I also remember in elementary school hearing other kids saying which college they were going to attend, and asking me where I was going to go.  I had no answer to that, either.  I never understood why they were even thinking about it, and wondered why it mattered to them.  I remember thinking that they would probably change their minds several times before the day came.

There were a lot of things I wanted to experience, but nothing I wanted to do to the exclusion of everything else.  And, I suppose, without a clear picture of what I wanted to "become" I couldn't get interested in going to college to become something.  Even when I did go to college, I never "declared a major".

But it all came back to not having any answer to "What do you want to be when you grow up?"

Now I regret that to a certain degree, but I'm not sure what I could have changed.  Because I still "suffer from" the same ... lack, or absence.  It's probably a personal failure on my part, but I swear it feels like a genetic glitch- like I'm missing an organ from birth and no amount of wishing or pretending will make it spontaneously grow.  Perhaps if I had been a more motivated person, I could have forged on ahead as if I had an answer.  And sometimes I wish I had.

I will say that there were some things I wanted to do.  And each and every one of those things I was told was not possible because it was "illegal".  Of course, now I realize that "illegal" doesn't mean "impossible", or even "wrong", but at that young age all I thought was that I didn't want to be the bad guy breaking "laws" and going to jail just for doing what I selfishly wanted to do.  It's a difficult delusion to kick.

And please don't forget.