I’ve been thinking about this topic for awhile now and tonight when I saw my friend’s post about it on Facebook, it made me think of it again. Her post was about all the careers we dream of when we are small, versus where we really end up in life and what we actually end up doing.
Growing up, I imagined many different careers for myself. When I was really little, I looked up to my teachers and dreamed of being one myself. When I got older I thought I would become a lawyer (but later realized I’d simply been reading too many John Grisham novels). For many years, I dreamed of being a dancer, particularly a ballerina, Broadway, or music video dancer. Then, as I set out to university, I dreamed of being a journalist and working a glamorous job at a glossy magazine.
Now, all these years later, I have a job I truly love: an elementary school teacher. It’s not surprising, being that throughout my youth I was always that student who absolutely loved school. I loved the social aspect, I loved writing, and I was one of the few kids who was actually thrilled when the teacher said it was time for independent reading!
Teaching allows me to use many of my natural skills (planning, organizing, communication…) and has taught me many new ones (leadership, differentiation, flexibility to name a few). I am lucky to have the freedom to create my own lessons (provided they meet a variety of standards) and enjoy coming up with new and exciting ideas to motivate, inspire, and educate my students!
Oh, my students! They are the reason I teach. I wanted a job where I could have a real affect on the world, where I could help shape tomorrow’s future (as cliché as that sounds). And while I have that opportunity in my profession, even better is the affect those wee little ones have had on me!
On early mornings when I practically have to drag myself to work, all it takes is the first little cutie to call out “Bonjour Madame!” as I walk into the building and their smile brightens my day. Teaching primary means lots of hugs, mistakenly being called “Mom” often, and kids who generally aim really hard to please. It’s no wonder watching them meet milestones, accomplish goals, and discover new things is so fascinating and rewarding. It’s really true what they say – that they aren’t just my students, that they practically become my own children – my little babies that I get to nurture, teach, and love.
But despite everything I love about teaching, I often wonder about other careers I could have had (or might end up having in the future, because we never really know where life might take us) And then just recently, when my Dad suddenly lost his job after 25 years of hard work and dedication, it made me think about it again. Are other people like me? Do they have a job they truly love, but another career in mind that would fulfill their inner passion? A position that would be their ultimate dream job?
For me, my ultimate dream job would be to be a writer. The life of those who create, write, and blog seems so incredibly glamorous (although I am not naïve enough to believe it’s always so, or that these people don’t work their behinds off as much as anybody else!) I dream of a beautiful home office decorated in white with touches of soft gray, pink, and gold. There are fresh flowers, beautiful journals, and a softly-scented candle on my desk. My office has giant windows with a beautiful view of lush vegetation and the lake outside. It is quiet. Oh, so quiet with maybe only the sound of Tucker snoring softly at my feet. My days consist of sipping my coffee, writing, and creating in my own personal oasis. I might be writing blog entries, magazine articles, children’s books, or even a novel.
I know all of this is an over-the-top dream that seems a little too perfect and, while I like to think of myself as a dreamer, I know very little or possibly none of this will come true. But the whole concept of having a job you truly love versus that inner passion is interesting to me. Very few people are lucky enough to take their true passion and turn it into a realistic, feasible career.
So I leave you with this thought – is your current job your true passion? Or if you could do anything and make a living at it, what would you do? I’d love to hear about it ~ leave your thoughts in the comments below!