“Jack, what do you want to be when you grow up?”
“A firefighter, or a doctor.”
“That’s awesome, buddy! What do you think Norah is going to be when she grows up?”
That seems about right.
Jack then proceeded to ask me what I wanted to be when I grew up. I told him that my job was to help people find their jobs, because I had about two seconds to explain my employment in higher education career services to my two year old before he wandered off looking for crackers.
(Another thoughtful pause)
“Where people’s jobs go? Mommy find them?”
And then we got into a whole big thing about technology, outsourcing, and the changing economic landscape, realized that we had vastly different views on renewable energy and climate change, and haven’t spoken since.
But come on, how cute is that? He thought the jobs were missing like the pretend cookie from his picnic set or all of his socks. And even better, he must have imagined me as this awesome detective out searching the city for the jobs. I’m basically Olivia Benson now so all my dreams have come true.
Olivia Benson or not, I do love my job. It’s rewarding, challenging, and the people are incredible. It’s not what I originally wanted to be when I grew up though. I wanted to be a Food Decorator.
Go ahead, tell me that’s not a thing like my parents did so many years ago crushing my dreams. (Note: I had this dream for about 45 seconds while on a cruise because I thought the sauce on the plates looked pretty. My dreams weren’t crushed, I’m fine.) But did I let my parents know that I really wasn’t that broken up about the fact that they said being a Food Decorator wasn’t really a job and that I would probably have to also cook the food? Of course not, because I’m horrible. Instead I bring it up semiannually, dramatically lamenting about how I’ve let the world pass me by because I didn’t pursue Food Decoration. And when others talk about times when they didn’t feel supported by their parents, I fall back on this story because I’ve had a very privileged life of leisure sans actual story-worthy issues. It’s a real wonder that Merm and Pop even like me.
So at the end of the day I can acknowledge that I’m overdramatic and a royal pain in the rear, but I refuse to be a hypocrite. Norah, if you do want to be Batman, be Batman.
With undying support for my children’s dreams,