Who do you want to be? Adults ask kids this question about ten times a day – growing up and becoming someone is the end goal – kids are expected to know the answer yesterday. But at some point, we stop asking. We take the generic answer of teacher or doctor as good enough, and we stop asking. There’s nothing wrong with these professions. Anybody would be proud to say their child aspired to be these things, but when did we decide to stop asking the questions when we got the right answer? When did we decide to ignore the look in their eyes, and decide their limits have been met before we even really know what those are?
So who do you want to be? The first thing that comes to mind for most is a career. Usually one that makes a difference, something that sparks change. Even if that’s not what we really want to do – we’re sure that’s what everyone wants to hear.
At twenty one years of age, after three years of college and no clue ‘who I want to be’, I started asking myself this question again, picturing middle school me with her whole life a mystery and everywhere in the world to go. I started asking myself again, but this time the answers were different.
I want to be the girl other girls look to for help. I want to be the girl at the bar who you stumble over to when you’ve had one too many to drink and you need someone safe to wait with after you call a cab. I want to be the girl that gives other girl’s confidence to be themselves. I want to be the girl who appears brave even when she isn’t, who seems to know what she’s doing even when she’s lost, and above all else, who loves so strongly, when you hold her, nothing else matters.
I want to be the girl who doesn’t have to limit herself to being one thing – career or otherwise. I want to be the girl who can be everything she ever dreamed of being, all while being the only thing that really matters – happy.
Who do you want to be when you grow up?