What were your childhood dreams of what you wanted to be, and how did they die?
The first thing I remember wanting to be was a GI Joe style army woman.
Somehow this managed to merge into being an army nurse… and then into a nurse like my grandma (my mom wasn’t a nurse yet at that point)… and so the family always told people that I wanted to be a nurse… when really I sort of wanted to be GI Joe and was settling for the idea of GI Joe nurse.
This died pretty early… and if it hadn’t, it would have been eliminated by knee injuries and later by other physical factors.
And I really don’t like much at all about nursing. To me, it has all of the hard parts of the care, without any of the interesting diagnosis parts, and I’m still not a big fan of blood.
The second one was a librarian. This one died mostly be working in the library for several years for elective credit.
I discovered that I really don’t like teaching… I really don’t like reading books that are out of my interest areas entirely… and I get frustrated easily by questions that people should be able to find the answer to if they actually took the time to try to find it. None of these work out well in a library.
The third one that I would consider childhood was late teens, when I wanted to work in radio.
Two things happened to this… one, like the library, the more I got into actually doing it, the more I figured out that I really preferred being on the outside edges of involvement.
I burnt out.. pretty big time… by all of the other stuff beyond the actual radio process. If I could have stayed an intern forever and worked with just the on-air, contests, and production aspects, I think I would have been ok… but there’s so much more.. paperwork stuff… sales stuff… marketing stuff… non-profit fundraising stuff… coordinating stuff… technical stuff…
Which leads to the second thing… the radio industry, in particular the Christian radio industry, changed a lot between the time I started my first internship in my junior year of high school and the time I graduated. Things became much more computer run… most of the stations in my area and many other areas became feeds that were coming from an entirely different part of the country and had no actual local content or staff… and the few jobs that were still there are almost entirely focused on doing all of that other stuff that I never liked in the first place.
So most of my dreams were not so much killed by lack of confidence in reaching them… or lack of feeling of being worth reaching for…. as much as they died because I went after them enough to realize that the reality was far different from the dream, and not something that I really wanted once I realized exactly what it was that I’d been chasing.