They (whoever "they" is) say that when you're thinking about how to choose your career path, you should think back to yourself as a kid and what you filled your days with. Of course, figuring out what you want to be as an adult isn't always that simple, but it is fun to look back on all of the hopes and dreams you set out for your life as a kid, and compare and contrast them to the here and now.
The very first thing I wanted to be was a nurse, or the first thing I remember wanting to be. I have no idea what gave me the idea that I would want to do this (in another life, however, I would have loved to have been a doctor, so maybe there is that) or why it was specifically a nurse and not a doctor, but it is the first vocation I really remember wanting to do. My uncle, who is diabetic and takes insulin shots everyday, used to let me help him. This came in quite handy for when I was an adult and had to give myself shots on a very short lupus treatment.
With the exception a few months on the flute, I was never really musically inclined.
After the nurse phase wore off, I wanted to be an astronaut. Again, I have no idea why since the idea of floating up into space and being mere inches away from suffocation freaks me the f out. I did take astronomy for my science in college, which I did enjoy, but when it gets to physics of stars, girl, you've lost me. However, this dream was partially curtailed when a boy in my kindergarten class told me I wasn't allowed to be an astronaut because women aren't allowed in space. Excuse me, jerk, but have you ever heard of Sally Ride? One of my first brushes with misogyny, however, I still am not convinced I would have been an asset to NASA.
I also really, really liked gymnastics and went through a phase when I was 9 where I wanted to be a professional gymnast. Like, I wasn't even all that good at it, but I would put on my leotard (or sometimes snap-crotch bottom body suit) and prance around the living room doing basic floor routines. I was convinced for a long time if I had stuck with it, I would have been pretty good, but I think that's just a lie I told myself.
Besides gymnastics, I did really love dancing and danced for a long time--first ballet and then Irish. I would say that I was actually pretty good, but of course, nowhere near what is necessary to be a professional. But, like every girl, I did dream of becoming a ballet dancer--but after puberty hit and I realized I wasn't going to be 90lbs without subsisting on simply lettuce, my fate was pretty much sealed.
By the third grade, I discovered my love of both theatre and writing. I acted in a really terrible production of a play called Torah, where I played a townsperson during some Biblical era. My dad was one of the leads. Piggybacking on that, I started auditioning for productions and doing quite a bit of acting up until my 20s--mostly as a hobby, but always knowing I wanted theatre in my life to some degree. I also started on my first novels at this time, most of them were historical fictions about the Oregon Trail (never let it be said that a computer game can't have a positive influence!).
I also wrote a Christmas mystery play and forced all of my friends to be in it for our families. Here we are above acting it out, with me as the director. This is perhaps the biggest preview of anything that I would do with my life in the future, aside from the hours and hours I spent as a child poring over history books and historical fictions.
My love of drama, writing and exploring the lives of others started at an early age, as demonstrated here by my 3rd birthday party in which I forced my mother to dress up as Mary Poppins and me as Jane Banks.
As a young adult, I toyed with the idea of owning a theatre, being a doctor and a lawyer before settling on my current (and maybe crazy) career path.
How about yourself? What did you want to be as a kid?